Why Your Disinfectants May Not Be Working

Sept. 13, 2017

Popular disinfectants may not be effective at eliminating germs because of user error. 

Sealed Air’s Diversey Care division of sustainable cleaning, sanitation and hygiene solutions newly released a groundbreaking study on the bactericidal efficacy of disinfectants.

This study investigated the influence of contact time and concentration on bactericidal efficacy of three types of disinfectants (accelerated hydrogen peroxide [AHP], quaternary ammonium compounds [Quats], and sodium hypochlorite) on stainless steel surfaces using Environmental Protection Agency procedure MB-25-02.

The research, conducted with Purdue University, found that the three tested disinfectants were significantly less bactericidal at lower than label use contact times and concentrations.

Other highlights from the study:

  • The bactericidal efficacy of the sodium hypochlorite disinfectant was most tolerant to the decreases of contact times and concentrations, followed narrowly by accelerated hydrogen peroxide disinfectant and quaternary ammonium compounds disinfectant is most affected.

  • In healthcare facilities, deviations from disinfectant direction of use, such as shorter wet contact time, could result in suboptimal disinfection.

“In busy healthcare facilities, disinfectants are often applied once and left to dry, regardless of the unique label instruction,” says Peter Teska, Infection Prevention Expert from Diversey Care. “As this study shows, disinfectants don’t live up to their claims if they get over diluted or are not reapplied as directed”

“Understanding the antimicrobial efficacy of disinfectants under different conditions offers healthcare facilities valuable information on disinfection limits, opportunities and corrective actions,” says Haley F. Oliver, associate professor, Department of Food Science, Purdue University

The full study results is available at the AJIC web site here

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Buildings, create an account today!

Sponsored Recommendations

Building Better Schools

Download this digital resource to better understand the challenges and opportunities in designing and operating educational facilities for safety, sustainability, and performance...

Tips to Keep Facility Management on Track

How do you plan to fill the knowledge gap as seasoned facility managers retire or leave for new opportunities? Learn about the latest strategies including FM tech innovations ...

The Beauty & Benefits of Biophilic Design in the Built Environment

Biophilic design is a hot trend in design, but what is it and how can building professionals incorporate these strategies for the benefits of occupants? This eHandbook offers ...

The Benefits of Migrating from Analog to DMR Two-Way Radios

Are you still using analog two-way radios? Download this white paper and discover the simple and cost-effective migration path to digital DMR radios that deliver improved audio...