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Cleaning vs. Disinfection: What’s the Difference?

A Person Cleaning the Table With a Wet Rag and Spraying Bottle

Cleaning and disinfecting are essential to protecting your family and home from germs and illness. These services remove different types of dirt and contaminants from surfaces.

For example, when you hire HVAC cleaning in Atlanta, they will use special vacuums to remove dust, pollen, and other irritants from your system. This helps improve your indoor air quality and can reduce allergy symptoms.

It is essential to choose the right company for the job. Some companies will only clean surfaces, while others will also disinfect them.

Read on to understand the difference between cleaning, disinfecting, and sanitizing and when you should use each service.

What Is Cleaning and How Does It Work?

Cleaning is the first and most crucial step in the disinfection process. Cleaning surfaces removes dirt, grime, and other contaminants that can hinder the efficacy of disinfectants. Cleaning aims to prepare surfaces for disinfection by removing as many potential pathogens as possible.

Some of the cleaning essentials include:

-Using the correct cleaning products for the job: general purpose cleaners, all-purpose cleaners, and disinfectants are not created equal. Different surfaces require different cleaners to be effective.

-Preventing cross-contamination: using separate cleaning cloths, mops, and other supplies for different areas of your home or office will help to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria.

-Properly ventilate the area: open windows and doors to ensure that the area is well-ventilated while cleaning.

What Is Disinfecting and How Does It Work?

Disinfecting is a process that uses chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. The goal of disinfecting is to reduce the number of germs on surfaces to a safe level for human contact. Disinfecting does not necessarily remove all dirt and debris from a surface. Still, it will kill most of the harmful bacteria and viruses.

Many different chemicals can be used for disinfecting, but the most common active ingredients are phenols, quaternary ammonium compounds (also known as quats), and chlorine bleach. Each of these chemicals works in a different way to kill germs.

Phenols work by breaking down the cell walls of bacteria and viruses. Quats work by disrupting the cell membranes of bacteria and viruses.

Chlorine bleach works by damaging the proteins that makeup bacteria and viruses.

Which Is Better: Cleaning or Disinfecting?

1) The Type of Surface

Some surfaces like glass, stainless steel, or plastic can be cleaned and disinfected with the same product. However, other surfaces like wood must be cleaned before being disinfected.

2) The Level of Contamination

Some surfaces are more likely to be contaminated than others. High-touch surfaces like door handles, light switches, and countertops are more likely to have germs on them than other surfaces in your home. These surfaces should be cleaned more often than others.

3) Safety and Environmental Concerns

Whether you’re using cleaning products or disinfectants, it’s essential to follow the manufacturer’s instructions on proper usage, including any precautions you should take. Some products may not be safe for specific surfaces or around pets and children.

For the best disinfection services in Atlanta, call Speed of Need Cleaning. Our professionals can help determine if your home or business needs cleaning, disinfecting, or both. We use top-of-the-line products to disinfect your home or business safely.

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