Cleaning & Disinfecting


Cleaning refers to the removal of germs, dirt, and other impurities from a surface. While it does not eliminate the germs, removing them reduces the amount of germs and the potential to spread infection.


Disinfecting is the process of using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. Disinfecting is not synonymous with cleaning, however, and should be performed after a surface has been cleaned.

Basic Cleaning & Disinfection Guidelines

In offices and at home, routine cleaning and disinfecting of the most frequently touched surfaces and objects should be performed. These could include:

  • Doorknobs
  • Countertops
  • Light switches
  • Desks
  • Toilets
  • Faucets, sinks, etc. 


Wear disposable gloves when cleaning and disinfecting surfaces, and be sure to dispose of them after use. For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective (CDC Disinfection Guide).