Laundry

Do you use our favorite disinfectants for COVID-19 germs in your home?

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Hands with yellow gloves holding blue cleaning towel scrubbing countertop Credit: Getty Images / Wave Break Media

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It’s been just about a year since the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) declared the coronavirus a pandemic—and we’ve learned a lot about taking care of ourselves and our homes since then. One major change most of us have adopted includes frequent disinfection with our trusty disinfecting wipes and DIY cleaning solutions to protect ourselves from the coronavirus, which can survive on surfaces for days.

Over the past year, experts have learned more about COVID-19 and how the disease spreads. The CDC now says the main form of disease transmission is through close person-to-person contact and that SARS-CoV-2 does not spread easily on surfaces. This should give you some peace of mind, but it never hurts to be extra safe by regularly cleaning surfaces, too.

Which products should you use to protect against coronavirus?

Sprays and sanitizers have been in high demand in the past year and have only recently become easier to acquire—but which ones are actually effective (i.e. worth buying)?

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has a list of products that they've approved for use against the coronavirus. According to the EPA, all of the products—which include brands like Purell, Clorox, and Lysol—have been proven to be "effective against harder-to-kill viruses," according to a news release, EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler stressed, "Using the correct disinfectant is an important part of preventing and reducing the spread of illnesses."

Our favorite disinfectants to fight the coronavirus

Lysol
Credit: Reviewed / Betsey Goldwasser

If your disinfectant product doesn't specify how long you should leave the surface wet, aim for 5 minutes.

While we can see the light at the end of the tunnel in regard to this pandemic, we are still wrangling with it, which may make finding your favorite disinfectants difficult.

Here are some of our favorite products, all listed on the EPA’s approved list of products to kill coronavirus—and yes, they’re in stock.

How to clean surfaces of the coronavirus (and other viruses and germs)

It's not just what you use to clean—it's also how you clean. Yes, there is a right and wrong way to use disinfecting wipes effectively.

Using just one wipe for all your surfaces may not be enough—that’s because surfaces must stay wet for a certain amount of time in order to properly disinfect. The CDC advises following the instructions on your cleaner’s label, ensuring that the surface is wet for the recommended period of time. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, for example, require 15 seconds of this “wet” time in order to guarantee germ and virus disinfection. Lysol Disinfecting Wipes requires two minutes. Before using disinfecting wipes, be sure to clear the surface of any dirt or debris with soap and water to allow the wipes to work its magic.

The CDC also recommends cleaning "high-touch" surfaces daily to keep your home clean. These surfaces include tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, desks, toilets, and sinks. Be sure to wear disposable gloves (which should be discarded after each use) while disinfecting and to wash your hands immediately after.

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