In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Internationally reputed organizations such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-USA, National Health (NHS)-UK and Havard health released guidelines for cleaning and disinfecting your home, including clothing, towels, linens, and other items that go into the laundry. As advised by those organizations, household members should educate themselves first about COVID-19 to prevent the spread of the virus at home.
1. Do not shake dirty laundry.
This minimizes the possibility of the virus dispersing through air.
2. Use a “bleach based” laundry Product.
National health of UK recommends to use a bleach based laundry product to prevent germ from spreading. Excessive soap also creates unwanted suds, enabling dirt and grime to remain trapped between fibers. Be sure to use the right amount of soap for proper cleaning and easy rinsing.
US National Institutes of Health (NIH) research also has shown that coronaviruses can be inactivated within a minute by disinfecting surfaces with 62-71% alcohol, or 0.5% hydrogen peroxide bleach or household bleach containing 0.1% sodium hypochlorite.
3. Wash items using the warmest appropriate water. The hotter the wash, the better.
Use the warmest appropriate water setting when washing clothes, towels, and linens. Also, dirty laundry from an infected person can safely be washed with other people’s items. If possible, wash items at a temperature of at least 55 Celsius.
Higher temperatures and humidity also tend to result in other coronaviruses dying quicker, although research has shown that a related coronavirus that causes Sars could be killed by temperatures above 56°C or 132°F (hotter than even a bath scalding enough to cause injury) at a rate of about 10,000 viral particles every 15 minutes.
4. Use a heat dryer.
To further prevent the spread of disease, dry your clothes well with heat, as viruses hate heat.
5. Steam the clothes.
You can also steam your clothes after, adding an extra layer of protection.
6. Wash your bedding regularly.
Increase the frequency of your linen cleaning routine.
7. Clean and disinfect clothes baskets, carts, and hampers.
Clean these items as often as possible and use a disposable bag liner, if available. If no gloves are used when handling dirty laundry, be sure to wash hands afterward.