The Best Products and Methods for Disinfecting Your Kitchen
Maintaining good kitchen hygiene is an important habit all year round, and with most people working from home, keeping your living space clean is of huge importance. The latest research has found germs and viruses can remain viable and infectious on a number of surfaces for up to 72 hours. These surfaces include plastic, stainless steel, copper, cardboard and aerosols.
With this in mind, we’ve rounded up the best kitchen cleaning products and methods for maintaining safe hygiene within the home, and especially the kitchen, which is one of the most high-traffic areas.
Clean first, then disinfect
In line with recently released guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting home environments, the most important step to remember is that cleaning is essential for disinfecting. Cleaning a surface before using a disinfecting agent increases the disinfectant’s potency, stemming the spread of viruses.
The reason for this is that “organic matter can inactivate many disinfectants,” making whatever product you’re using redundant. Wipe away all the food scraps, dirt, dust and other particles before going to work with disinfectants.
Frequently touched surfaces, which include door handles, light switches and tabletops should be cleaned as frequently as possible with a detergent solution, followed by an antibacterial solution. This should be an alcohol-based disinfectant or bleach for maximum safety.
Sinks and basins fall under the minimally touched surface category, however they deserve the same level of attention, as they can be breeding grounds for bacteria. Rinsing and scrubbing your sink with a detergent first will again aid the potency of the bleach or alcohol you use to disinfect the area.
Which products should you use?
There’s a whole host of products you can reach for to clean and disinfect your kitchen.
The job of a detergent is to clean the surface of organic matter, germs, build-up of residue and even viruses. Dish soap will help to a degree with this, although you may be better off opting for a multi-purpose spray. Always look for a detergent with an alcohol content, as this will kill bacteria. Vinegar is another ingredient to look for, as it assists with the breakdown of built-up residue, helping you maintain a clean kitchen.
A disinfectant should always follow a cleaning product. Disinfecting solutions should be applied to the surface, and sit for at least 10 minutes to allow the disinfection to properly occur, and kill as many germs as possible. The most potent disinfectant products for your kitchen are bleach and alcohol spray with at least 70% isopropyl alcohol. Look for hospital-grade disinfectant sprays for the best results.
What should you clean?
It’s important you clean high-traffic areas of your kitchen the most frequently. These include:
- Door handles
- Light switches
- Benchtops, tabletops and surfaces where you cook and eat
- Fridge, microwave and cupboard doors
- Drawer handles
These areas should be cleaned at minimum daily. Exceptions to this rule include food prep areas, door handles and light switches, which should be cleaned more frequently as they’re more likely to harbour and transmit harmful germs and viruses. It’s also important to closely monitor these areas whenever someone may be coughing, sneezing or showing any symptoms of illness. Official government guidelines suggest disinfecting these areas as frequently as possible.
Some best practices for kitchen cleaning
When cleaning, make sure you wear protective equipment such as gloves and a mask (depending on if and how much bleach you may be using). When wiping surfaces, it is most hygienic to use single-use paper towels or antibacterial wipes, as reusable cloths can harbour nasty bacteria. Remember to wash your gloves thoroughly after each use with soap and water, and hang them to dry. Thoroughly wash your hands as well to avoid the spread of bacteria.
Maintaining good hand hygiene is one of the most important steps you can take to avoid the spread of viral bacteria. The rubbing motion of washing your hands works to kill viruses most effectively, so be sure to rub your hands together for at least 20 seconds, then rinse.
Whilst maintaining cleanliness within your home is an important step for avoiding the spread of any bacteria or virus, the ultimate way to stop the spread is to enjoy the comfort of your own home and try new recipes.
All of the best kitchen design ideas are in our 2020 Design Trends eBook. Download it now.
At Apollo Kitchens, we’re here to help you at each stage of the kitchen renovation process. Reach out to us today and we’ll happily provide you with our expert advice.