Does seeing the office cleaner dusting your desk put your mind at ease? Does the smell of bleach in the office bathroom give you the sense that all is well with the world and your bathroom is squeaky clean? Turns out this may not actually be the case.
With COVID putting office hygiene on the agenda like never before, we asked Caroline Ayers, Winc’s resident Health, Hygiene & Safety Specialist, to help us separate fact from fiction. We put six common cleaning myths to the test. Here’s what she had to say.
Myth 1: Bleach cleans absolutely everything
Despite popular belief, bleach alone is not an effective cleaning agent.
“On its own, it’s great for stain removal and but bleach still needs some form of surfactant to lift the soil away. Keep in mind that it also degrades the layers of a surface, making them more susceptible to bleach resistant superbugs which breed when bleach is overused or used as a sole cleaning agent,” says Caroline.
Her advice? If you are required to use bleach, make sure you use it with other disinfectants that are less corrosive and less harmful.
Myth 2: Feather dusters are effective dust removers
“Feather dusters are notorious for lifting dust into the air. They just don’t hold dust particles all that well and increase the risk of cross-contamination when cleaning,” says Caroline.
“This way, you’re likely spreading germs from surface to surface and inhaling particles as you go. Microfibre cloths are a great alternative. Most are washable and reusable, making them a great eco-friendly choice.”
Myth 3: The workplace dishwasher cleans itself
If not properly maintained, dishwashers retain food bits and hard water minerals as well as build up grease and limescale. They should be cleaned monthly with a commercial dishwasher cleaner.
“There are certain products that can help clean the inside of the dishwasher,” says Caroline, “but this all depends on the chemical formulation of the product. All dishwashers need to be serviced by the manufacturer or a dishwasher specific agent needs to be used to maintain cleanliness.”
Myth 4: Green cleaning products are less effective
This is a widespread myth. In most cases, green cleaning products are just as effective as traditional cleaners.
“If you have concerns about the efficacy of green cleaners, search for relevant certifications to verify their claims. Winc uses market intelligence, due diligence, testing and trials, industry knowledge, supplier information and current SDS to ensure that customers have access to information relating to products safety, suitability and effectiveness,” says Caroline.
Myth 5: The more product you use, the better the clean
“Cleaners use various active ingredients, such as detergents, surface protectant or fragrance oils, which leave residue. Over-dilution and general wet mop cleaning, which usually leave surfaces wet, can lead to the accumulation of residue. This will make your surfaces feel tacky and look grimy over time. The residue can also become a breeding ground for microbes,” says Caroline.
Myth 6: Soft furnishings can be completely disinfected
“Disinfectants work best on hard, non-porous surfaces. Depending on the ingredients, many disinfectants are safe to use on soft furnishings like seating and fabric, or porous materials such as wood, rubber and grouting, and do in fact kill germs. However, they may only be effective against germs on the surface where the disinfectant is active for the necessary time period,” says Caroline.
Does your workplace have everything it needs to maintain the right hygiene requirements? At Winc we stock a wide range of cleaning and hygiene products on our website. We currently have a number of cleaning and hygiene essentials on sale*.
*All promotions and products are advertised in good faith to be available at the time of sale, however, unforeseen circumstances such as supply or delivery problems or unexpected demand, may occasionally result in stock unavailability. All purchases are subject to Winc terms and conditions of sale.