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Disinfecting With Wipes

Though surface transmission of COVID-19 is rare with proper hand hygiene and etiquette, disinfecting wipes may still be utilized throughout campus on a case-by-case basis, to meet regulatory requirements for surface cleaning in areas where there are 1) shared materials between multiple users or 2) to supplement routine cleaning in areas where custodians do not routinely service or in areas where it is not appropriate for them to do so (labs, research spaces, private offices). This guide will help you properly disinfect surfaces with wipes, should you need to use them. 

August 6, 2021

Here’s what you need to know:

  • Disinfection and sanitation is a shared responsibility
  • COVID-19 can live on surfaces although this is not widely proven to be the main source of transmission
  • HSU will provide EPA-approved disinfecting wipes in common areas

About Disinfection and Sanitation

Disinfection and sanitation throughout campus is a shared responsibility. Efforts to reduce the spread of disease on campus through frequently touched surfaces include:

  • Periodic and/or once per day cleaning following CDC guidelines using EPA-approved disinfectants of touched surfaces
  • Enhanced cleaning per CDC recommendations in response to positive cases on campus
  • Using state-of-the-art cleaning equipment for bathrooms and other communal spaces
  • Providing EPA-approved wipes in areas of frequently shared equipment such as computer labs, and in lobbies and foyers where frequently touched surfaces are located 

If the sanitization is performed by the individual who is using or touching the shared object or common surface, it should be performed as appropriate for the need. Hand hygiene will still be the most effective way to reduce transmission, but there are cases where the use of wipes is warranted.  


Proper Use of Sanitizing Wipes

If a surface is visibly dirty, you must clean off any dirt or debris first and then sanitize, as COVID-19 can hide in the dirt.

To ensure sanitation, each wipe has its own “minimum wet time”. 

  • Alcohol based wipes: 30 seconds
  • Clorox and Lysol wipes (or other “quaternary ammonium chloride compounds” types): 4 minutes
  • Diluted bleach: 5 minutes
  • 3% hydrogen peroxide: 8 minutes

Wipe in one direction only and let the surface air dry.