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Sanitizing vs. Disinfecting

Updated: Mar 12, 2021

Which one of these 'disinfectants' is approved for front of house disinfecting?

If you guessed the Seventh Generation you are right!

This Clorox Bleach is the No-Splash version and therefore not an acceptable chlorine for disinfecting. The Seventh Generation is registered and approved by the FDA.


In the back of the house you want to continue to use the same levels of chemical concentrations you did before the pandemic started. That would be chlorine concentrations between 50 – 200 PPM or quaternary ammonium known as ‘quat’ solution at 200 (some are 150) to 400 PPM. Continue to use test strips to assure it is accurate.


In the front of the house you should be disinfecting, not just sanitizing. Disinfecting is actually a process that kills viruses. You can use a disinfectant that is pre-mixed, but you must be clear on the ‘contact time’. Read the label carefully. You must know how long the disinfectant needs to remain on the surface (contact time) before it is wiped off, to be effective, and kill the virus if present.

It is essential to read and follow the directions on the label of any disinfectant you are using in the front, on non-food contact surfaces, for it to be effective.

Directions for use for this product requires 10 minutes contact time to be effective against coronavirus.

Also outlined is the EPA registration number.


CDC has provided a solution that you can make up each day using bleach that will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.

Use bleach containing 5.25%–8.25% sodium hypochlorite. Do not use a bleach product if the percentage is not in this range or is not specified.

  • Follow the manufacturer’s application instructions for the surface, ensuring a contact time of at least 1 minute. Wipe off with a dry paper towel.

  • Ensure proper ventilation during and after application.

  • Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date.

  • Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. This can cause fumes that may be very dangerous to breathe in.

  • Prepare a bleach solution by mixing:

    • 5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) of 5.25%–8.25% bleach per gallon of room temperature water OR

    • 4 teaspoons of 5.25%–8.25% bleach per quart of room temperature water

  • Bleach solutions will be effective for disinfection up to 24 hours.

  • Label and date the spray bottle.


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