Confirmed cases of coronavirus have now been reported in all 50 states, and people everywhere are more concerned than ever about home cleaning and disinfecting.
We’ve done some research into best practices for preventing spread of COVID-19 and disinfecting your home. Here are some timely tips for home cleaning and disinfecting to help keep you and your family safe.
First, take preventive action.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) stresses the importance of every American practicing everyday preventive actions that can help prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses. The best advice? Act as if you have the virus and take precautions to avoid spreading it.
Some of the CDC’s recommendations for preventing the spread of coronavirus are:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- If you’re sick, stay home – except to get medical care.
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue.
- Clean frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles every day using a regular household detergent and water.
- If surfaces are dirty, clean them with detergent and water prior to disinfection.
- A list of products for disinfection, with Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-approved emerging viral pathogens claims, maintained by the American Chemistry Council Center for Biocide Chemistries (CBC), is available here. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Always wash your hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty.
Disinfecting tips for your home
The first recommendation from the CDC when it comes to home cleaning and disinfecting is the same as advice issued for how to kill flu virus on surfaces. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces and objects, such as tables, countertops, light switches, doorknobs, and cabinet handles.
Additional guidance from the CDC includes:
- Wear disposable gloves when you clean and disinfect.
- Clean surfaces using soap and water. Routinely clean frequently touched surfaces.
- Disinfect using diluted household bleach solutions, provided their appropriate for the surface you’re cleaning. Check to be sure the bleach has not passed its expiration date.
- Unexpired household bleach, when properly diluted, is the best house disinfectant.
Most commercially available disinfectants should have a label that lists the viruses they’re effective against, and that’s what you’ll want to look out for more than any particular active ingredient.
According to Dr. John Townes, head of infection prevention and control at the Oregon Health & Science University, “If [a disinfectant product] has an indication for killing influenza, RSB, SARS virus, or other coronaviruses, then it should work against this one also.”
- Disinfecting wipes (Clorox, Lysol, or store brand will do)
- Disinfectant spray (Purell, Clorox, Lysol, all make sprays that will work)
- Isopropyl alcohol
- Hydrogen peroxide
If you can’t find these items, here’s how to make a bleach solution for disinfecting your home:
- Mix 5 tablespoons (1/3 cup) bleach per gallon of water
- Mix 4 teaspoons of bleach per quart of water.
Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser.
Other products you can use include alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and household cleaners and disinfectants.
Many cleaning products recommend:
- Keeping the surface wet for several minutes to make sure germs are killed.
- Wearing gloves and making sure the area you’re cleaning has good ventilation while you’re cleaning and disinfecting.
Disinfecting tips for various types of surfaces in your home
- Soft surfaces such as carpets, rugs, and drapes:
- Clean with soap and water, or with cleaners designed for these surfaces.
- If possible, launder items according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the warmest water setting you can, and let your items dry completely.
- As an alternative, you can disinfect with an EPA-registered household disinfectant.
- Laundry such as clothing, towels, and linens:
- Wear disposable gloves.
- Wash your hands with soap and water as soon as you remove the gloves.
- Do not shake dirty laundry.
- Wash your items in the warmest water possible and let them dry completely.
- Clean and disinfect clothes hampers according to the appropriate guidance.
- Food service items
- Wear gloves when washing dishes.
- Wash dishes and utensils in hot water or in a dishwasher.
- Use gloves when removing garbage bags, and when handling and disposing of trash.
- Wash hands after removing gloves.
Steps to take if someone in your home is sick
If someone in your home has COVID-19, choose a room in your home where the sick person can be kept separate from the rest of the family. If possible, the affected person should also have a separate bathroom for their use only.
The sick person should have their own trash can, and gloves should be worn when removing trash bags and disposing of them. After removing gloves, wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water.
How Deerbrooke is responding to COVID-19
The health and safety of our guests and staff is our primary concern. Please be assured that all of our builders are taking every precaution to ensure that their model homes are safe, including frequent cleaning and sanitizing throughout the day.
If you’d like to take a virtual tour of our community or our model homes, please contact us and we’ll do our best to accommodate you. If you’re interested in an in-person tour, please contact us ahead of time so we can make sure you’re the only visitor in our model home.
To help reduce the possibility of spreading COVID-19, we ask that only you and one other guest attend your appointment.
And of course, if you’re feeling sick – or have been in contact with someone who is – we respectfully ask that you wait until you’re healthy to visit our community. Please know that we take your health and safety extremely seriously.
Stay Safe. Stay Healthy.
Deerbrooke in Leander has chosen three of the area’s most highly respected builders to create the home you’ve always dreamed of providing for your family. Please browse their floor plans, get to know their designs, and request a virtual tour or online meeting if you’re interested in building a new home.
Contact us at 512-387-8632 to schedule your private or virtual tour and meet our builders!