Guide to Home and Office Cleaning During the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak
St Anne’s Cleaning present the following guide that highlights how and what to clean during the Coronavirus outbreak.
To reduce the risk of coronavirus (COVID-19) infection, more frequent cleaning is recommended in all properties, including those with no confirmed cases of coronavirus. When cleaning, extra attention should be given to ‘high-touch’ surfaces such as door handles and light switches.
If there has been a confirmed or suspected case of coronavirus in a property, it is recommended that the property is deep cleaned and disinfected to reduce the risk of transmission to other people.
When there is confirmed or suspected coronavirus.
How to clean: When there is confirmed or suspected coronavirus
If there has been a confirmed or suspected case of coronavirus in a property, the following steps should be taken to clean and disinfect the property.
1. Find out when the property was last contaminated with coronavirus
A study has shown that coronavirus (COVID-19) is stable for two to three days on plastic and stainless steel surfaces. Therefore please follow the extra precautions that are recommended throughout this guide if the property was exposed to coronavirus within the last 72 hours.
If there is a person in the property with suspected or confirmed coronavirus, this person should be isolated to a single room while the cleaning takes place. This person should also use their own bathroom if possible. Unless needed, these rooms should not be cleaned until this person has completed the required isolation period. If a separate bathroom is not available, this person should clean and disinfect the shared bathroom after each use.
Gather your usual cleaning supplies, plus a disinfectant product and disposable protective equipment (gloves, shoe covers, apron, mask, goggles)
Research conducted on other coronaviruses indicates that a number of widely available disinfectant products are effective against COVID-19.
We recommend Dettol Surface Cleanser, which kills 99.9% of germs. The rest of your cleaning equipment should include:
Mop and bucket
Steam cleaner or camper shampoo
You should bring the following Personal Protective Equipment
Disposable shoe covers
If the property has been contaminated within the last 72 hours, it is further recommended that you bring:
Disposable surgical mask
3. Upon Entering the Property
Avoid physical greetings, remove your shoes or cover them with disposable covers
Wearing outdoor shoes inside the home can contaminate floors. Remove shoes or put on shoe covers upon entry.
Once inside, avoid physical greetings and try to stay more than 2m away from anybody else in the property.
4. Wash your hands
With warm soapy water for 20 seconds and put on Personal Protective Equipment
Wash your hands with warm soapy water for at least 20 seconds. You can find a NHS guide to washing your hands here
After washing hands, ensure that you are wearing your Personal Protective Equipment
5. Open Windows and Turn on Extractor Fans for Ventilation
Before cleaning, open any windows that you can for ventilation, and turn on extractor fans.
6. Clean Surfaces
With warm soapy water, paying extra attention to ‘high-touch’ surfaces including door handles and light switches
All areas that a symptomatic person has passed through should be cleaned. Pay extra attention to ‘high-touch’ surfaces that are contacted frequently in daily life including:
All bathroom surfaces including the toilet
A two-step decontamination process is recommended, consisting of cleaning followed by disinfection. Cleaning with soap and water removes germs from the surfaces, while disinfection reduces the risk of infection by killing remaining germs.
To clean hard surfaces, use warm soapy water and a clean microfiber cloth to wipe down the area.
Be careful when cleaning electrical sockets and light switches. Use as little moisture as possible by applying a small quantity of product to a cloth and using this to clean these surfaces.
Start cleaning the high surfaces, working your way down and out of each room, to avoid contaminating areas that you have already cleaned. Leave a bathroom until last, as this is where you will clean yourself and your tools at the end of the clean.
7. Disinfect Surfaces Using a Product that ‘Kills 99.9% of Germs’
Once the surfaces have been cleaned, they can be decontaminated with a disinfectant product. The disinfectant we recommend can be sprayed directly to the surface, wiped over with a clean, damp cloth and left to dry.
Some disinfectants require rinsing, or are most effective when left on the surface for a few minutes before wiping. Always check the label to ensure you are using products as recommended, to maximise effectiveness.
If you are disinfecting sensitive stone surfaces such as marble or granite, check the product label to ensure it will not damage the surface. Optionally, you can use a disinfecting stone spray.
8. Machine-wash Soft Furnishings, Contaminated Clothes and Bed Linen
Avoid shaking soft furnishings (mats, rugs cushions etc). These items can carry germs, and shaking them can contaminate areas you have already cleaned.
Vacuum these items with the soft brush attachment, and delicately place them in the washing machine. Check the labels carefully and wash items at the highest recommended temperature.
Follow the same process for any clothes or linen – delicately place these items in the washing machine, and wash at the highest recommended temperature.
Items that have been heavily soiled with body fluids and cannot be washed should be disposed of. If a 72 hour waiting period has been observed since the property was contaminated, this can be done immediately. If not, store this waste securely for 3 days before placing in household waste.
9. Vacuum all Floors, Upholstery and Skirting Boards
Before cleaning and disinfecting floors, any visible dirt and debris should be vacuumed. Ensure that floors are cleaned right to the edges and into the corners. Upholstery and skirting boards should also be vacuumed.
10. Mop Hard Floors
Using warm water and disinfectant.
To clean hard floors, fill a bucket with warm water and a disinfectant product that is suitable for your floor’s surface.
We recommend a product such as Dettol Spray. Mop in a figure of 8 motion and work your way out of the room, to avoid contaminating previously cleaned areas of the floor.
11. Deep Clean Carpeted Floors
Using a steam cleaner or carpet shampoo.
For carpeted floors, steam cleaning provides the most effective option for removing germs.
If steam cleaning is not possible, then a carpet shampoo product such as Vanish carpet shampoo will remove more dirt and germs than vacuuming alone. This product is mixed with water to form a foam, which is applied to the carpet, then vacuumed 2 hours later.
With both methods you should work your way out of the room, to avoid contaminating previously cleaned areas of carpet.
12. Clean Non-Disposable Equipment at a High Temperature
Machine-washable equipment such as cloths and mop heads should now be cleaned at a high temperature (ideally 60C or above). Check the labels carefully and wash items at the highest recommended temperature. Non-machine washable equipment such as goggles and mop handles should then be washed and disinfected.
13. Safely Dispose of Waste
All non-washable equipment should be disposed of.
Remove all protective clothing (shoe covers, gloves, apron) and double bag these items. If the property was not exposed to coronavirus in the last 72 hours, all items can immediately be disposed of in the household waste.
If the property was exposed to suspected coronavirus within 72 hours, these items should be stored securely for 3 days.
Immediately wash your hands with warm soapy water for 20 seconds.
Once 72 hours have elapsed, these items should be moved from secure storage to household waste.
Cleaning guide: When there is no suspected coronavirus
How to clean: When there is no suspected coronavirus
During the coronavirus outbreak, enhanced cleaning methods and precautions are recommended to reduce the risk of infection, even when there are no suspected cases of coronavirus in the property.
St Anne’s Cleaning wish you to remain safe and therefore we suggest you give us a call on: 0800 999 3397 for all your cleaning needs
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