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Division of Facilities

General Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfecting

Routine cleaning and disinfecting is key to maintaining a safe environment for faculty, students, and staff. 

Cleaning removes dirt and most germs and is usually done with soap and water or other cleaner.

Disinfecting kills most germs, depending on the type of chemical, and only when the chemical product is used as directed on the label.

Sanitizing reduces the number of germs on a surface whereas disinfectants kill most of them.

General precautions for staff/students assigned to general cleaning in offices and break rooms

As long as routine cleaning and disinfecting have taken place regularly, additional cleaning and disinfecting is likely not necessary. The following are general precautions for staff given that community transmission of COVID-19 may occur:

  • While cleaning and disinfecting, and until a person can wash hands after doing so, staff should not touch their
  • Make sure surfaces are free from heavy residue before
  • Staff should wear disposable gloves when handling trash or cleaning and disinfecting shared workspace, counter tops or frequent touch points to protect skin from
  • Staff should thoroughly wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after gloves are
  • Staff who are responsible for cleaning and disinfecting should be trained to use disinfectants safely and effectively.
  • Use an EPA-registered disinfectant and follow the manufacturer’s instructions to ensure safe and effective use of the All bottles MUST be properly labeled.
  • Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration
  • Disinfectant must remain wet on the surface (dwell time) per the manufacturer’s
  • All cleaning staff should be trained on the hazards of the cleaning chemicals used in the workplace in accordance with OSHA’s Hazard Communication Standard 29 CFR 1910.1200
  • Safety data sheets should be available for each disinfectant used and should be the basis for training employees on the hazards of the
  • All disinfectant products used in response to COVID-19, must meet EPA's criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2
  • Never mix chemicals such as bleach with ammonia (which produces a hazardous vapor).