Which household cleaning products inactivate COVID-19?

The ability of common household cleaning products to inactivate SARS-CoV-2 – the virus that causes COVID-19 – has been tested by Australian researchers, who have shown that detergents, bleach and alcohol are very effective in getting the job done. .

The research team tested the ability of inexpensive and readily available household cleaning products to render SARS-CoV-2 non-infectious. They used vinegar, bleach, dish detergent, and ethanol to represent alcohols available at home.

“Our results show that detergent, bleach and alcohol are very effective in rendering SARS-CoV-2 non-infectious, but vinegar does not work at all,” says lead author Dr. Julie McAuley, a researcher at the Peter Doherty Institute for Infection and Immunity, Victoria.

The researchers also identified the minimum concentrations of these cleaners needed to inactivate the virus.

“To create an effective cleaning solution, just add a similar amount of detergent to the water as you would to your dishes. [two millilitres in one litre]then wipe the surface potentially contaminated with SARS-CoV-2 and let it dry,” says McAuley.

“For bleach, our results show that as little as 5ml can be added to 1 liter of water and could be ideal for disinfecting bathroom surfaces,” she adds. “Hand soaps containing alcohol, or solutions used to clean surfaces, must contain more than 40% alcohol to be effective.”

But if you plan to combine household products to increase their effectiveness, it may be wise to wait.

“Surprisingly, when we combined the bleach and detergent, we did not see an increase in virucidal potential to inactivate SARS-CoV-2 compared to using each component alone,” McAuley says. .

“We must also caution against combining chemicals with the intent of increasing their virucidal activity, as some household disinfectants contain buffering agents which we believe may counteract the effective virucidal concentration of the other chemical with which they were mixed up.”

All tested dilutions, products and combinations have been published in the new study and are available to the public to inform their COVID-19 cleaning plans.

“We wanted to provide all the information needed to help people safely clean potentially contaminated surfaces, reducing the potential for transmission in their homes and workplaces,” says McAuley.

The research is published in the journal Virus.

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