The EPA’s List N lists over 400 chemicals approved for use against emerging viral pathogens, including SARS-CoV-2. If you don’t have time to vet these, you might take one of two directions.
First, you could look up what you usually use to see if it’s on the list. If it is, you are good to go.
Or, you can look for products with the below ingredients, since they are less likely to harm you, your employees, and your customers. This approach presents a two-fold opportunity to select effective cleaning products while showing much-needed care and concern for your employees.
Citric acid is sold commercially as a general disinfectant and cleaning agent for removing soap scum, hard water stains, lime, and rust. It’s viewed as a safer alternative to conventional disinfectant and cleaning products, such as quat and chlorine bleach.
Hydrogen Peroxide is a safe and common cleaning solution that is approved for sanitation use to cleanse the workplace of COVID-19. Household-grade concentrations of this chemical are generally considered safe to use, but should never be ingested.
DO NOT USE THIS INGREDIENT
You wouldn’t want to include something caustic like Hydrochloric Acid in your cleaning regime, since it is a hazardous liquid that is corrosive and, in concentrated forms, releases acidic mists that are also dangerous.
If the acid or acidic mist comes into contact with the skin, eyes, or internal organs—the damage can be irreversible or even fatal in severe cases.
Lysol® uses hydrochloric acid in its toilet bowl cleaner, which is clearly not a great idea when there is a possibility of acidic mists being formed that can do permanent damage.
There are real risks to the chemicals in disinfectants. If you check yours and discover bad stuff, switch to something that isn’t harmful to employees, customers, and yourself.
So often, companies don’t pay attention to risks in the workplace until something bad happens. Don’t let your fear of COVID-19 infection trump other aspects of employee health that you must also consider.
If you need guidance with any part of your COVID-19 prevention strategy, we’re here to help.