Disinfecting and cleaning our home has never been more necessary these days. Due to the threat of COVID-19 pandemic, all we want to do is be safe and healthy. Staying clean and germ may start from our home. There are many disinfectants that are available in groceries and supermarkets. Although these products may keep things clean, some of them aren’t really safe for our health due to their harmful chemicals. Some of these products aren’t safe with animals and the environment as well.

As recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), your cleaning products need to be EPA-registered in order to be effective against coronavirus. You should follow these label directions carefully, for safe and effective use. You must remember that these products are used for surface only, and not on humans. However, there are home or natural disinfectants that can kill germs that limits contact with bacteria and viruses.

disinfectant spray spraying bacteria Cleaning, Sanitizing, Disinfecting: What’s the Difference?

An important first step to staying healthy is knowing the difference between cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting.

  • Cleaning refers to the removal of dirt, debris, grease, and germs. Cleaning physically removes germs from surfaces, but, generally, doesn’t kill them. Cleaning lessens the dirt that may contain bacteria and viruses. 
  • Sanitizing is reducing the number of germs on a surface. This may reduce the risk of spreading infections. 
  • Disinfecting refers to the killing of germs on surfaces. This usually involves using disinfectants with chemicals like EPA-registered disinfectants. Typically, you will need to clean a surface before you fully disinfect to lower the risk of spreading bacteria and viruses.

 

Natural Disinfectants vs. Chemical Disinfectants 

We should all practice to frequently clean and disinfect our homes, from the kitchen to bathrooms, desk, tables, doorknobs, sink, faucet, and even light switches. When choosing natural disinfectants in our home, we often ask if we should use natural or chemical disinfectants? Whichever it is, these disinfectants have to be EPA-registered. 

Natural disinfectants and chemical disinfectants can both effectively lower the risk of spreading contagious diseases by killing the germs on surfaces. Here are the differences between natural disinfectants to chemical disinfectants. 

Natural Disinfectants Pros:

  • Using natural disinfectants is safe, especially around children and pets, since it does not contain harmful chemicals.
  • Natural disinfectants are eco-friendly.
  • These plant-based disinfectants are just as effective as a chemical cleaner when used properly.

Natural Disinfectants Cons:

  • Not all natural disinfectants are effective. As a result, it does not kill germs and might spread bacteria and viruses.
  • Natural disinfectant works slower than using chemical disinfectants.

Chemical disinfectants are products that can be found in supermarkets. This kind of disinfectant is commonly used in our households. 

Chemical Disinfectant Pros:

  • Chemical disinfectant works faster than natural disinfectants. 
  • This kind of disinfectant typically gets rid of 99.9% germs.

Chemical Disinfectant Cons:

  • Chemical disinfectants have dangerous chemicals such as ammonia, bleach, sodium hydroxide, etc., which is bad for both humans and animals. 
  • Using chemical disinfectant is hazardous to health, if not used properly.

 

4 Best Natural Disinfectants

Using natural disinfectants is safe and effective, most of the time. These are easily accessible as it can be found in your kitchen or if not, you can easily buy it at local stores. Here are some natural disinfectants that you can use at home:

vingear in a bottle to be used as a disinfectant

 

1. Vinegar

Vinegar is more than just a cooking ingredient that you have at home. This clean and biodegradable liquid is made up of 95% water and 5% acetic acid. This can kill up to 80% of germs.

 

2. Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is also known as oxygen bleach. This compound is made up of water and oxygen molecules. This can be used for laundry, kitchen and bathroom cleaning, and many more. You can use this at 3% concentration or you can dilute it to water. However, you must not combine vinegar with hydrogen peroxide. This will create peracetic acid, which is potentially toxic.

 

3. Alcohol

This is commonly used as an ingredient in sanitizers and disinfectants. It comes in different names – isopropyl alcohol, ethyl alcohol, but it is commonly called rubbing alcohol. It is a great natural disinfectant as it effectively kills germs. This versatile natural disinfectant is greatly used in cleaning surfaces and even removing bad smell from the laundry or shoes. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends at least 70% alcohol content for disinfection.

 

4. Essential Oils

These concentrated liquids extracted from plants have natural antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties. These are great natural disinfectants as they enhance disinfecting surfaces. Plus, it leaves a natural, fresh scent on homes. Here are the following essential oils that you can use to disinfect surfaces in your home. You can mix these with water or vinegar, and you can use it as a homemade disinfectant spray.  

  • Tea Tree Oil 
  • Lavender Oil
  • Thyme Oil

 

In these times where we need to be extra careful with our health, it is important that our home must be clean and sanitized. Using these natural disinfectants will not only keep your home clean and germ-free, but it also gives you peace of mind that these will not harm you or your family. However, you must keep in mind to use disinfectants that are EPA-registered and recommended by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Cleaning and disinfecting frequently will keep homes safe and healthy, not only from coronavirus but other diseases as well.