Survey shows 42% of Americans are not disinfecting properly

March 30, 2020

A new poll conducted for the American Cleaning Institute (ACI) finds that four in ten Americans are not properly allowing disinfectant sprays and wipes to kill the viruses and germs that can make us sick.

The survey, conducted by Ipsos for ACI, asked respondents to indicate how they are primarily using disinfectants on surfaces in their homes, in an effort to understand and help educate consumers to use products as directed in the midst of COVID-19.

Twenty-six percent of those surveyed say they spray and then wipe the surface immediately after, while another 16 percent make a quick pass with a disinfectant wipe. The poll shows that other consumers are getting it right: 26 percent keep the surface wet with disinfectant wipes for as long as recommended on the label, while another 16 percent spray and leave until air dried.

ACI’s key tips to proper disinfection:

  • Pre-clean any surfaces prior to disinfecting to remove any excess dirt or grime.
  • Use the disinfecting spray or wipe as directed.
  • After disinfecting, let the surface air dry making sure it stays wet for as long as recommended on the product label. This is critical in ensuring that the proper germ or virus kill takes place as intended.
  • If disinfecting food contact surfaces or toys, rinse with water after they air dry.
  • If using a disinfectant wipe, throw out after using. Do not flush any non-flushable products.

“Prudent and proper use of disinfectants will continue to provide crucial health and wellness benefits in multiple surroundings, including homes, healthcare settings and essential workplaces around the country,” said Melissa Hockstad, ACI President & CEO. “Reading the label is so important to achieving maximum effectiveness for any cleaning product or disinfectant.”

The survey did indicate that 82 percent of respondents were either very or somewhat confident that the cleaning products they use will protect against the spread of the coronavirus.

“The manufacturers of cleaning products, disinfectants, soaps and sanitizers and their ingredients are working around the clock to meet the unprecedented demand for these vital products,” said Hockstad.

“These companies are rising to the challenge and doing everything possible to get these essential products into the hands of those who need them the most, even with the immense challenges affecting our supply chains. We are working hard so that consumers have access to these trusted products and want to ensure they are being used correctly to fight the spread of COVID-19 in homes and communities.”

The ACI provides updated information on cleaning for the coronavirus on its website.

ACI has the story.

More COVID-19 coverage HERE.