Disinfect / Sanitize

Following are some infographics from California Department of Pesticide Regulation that can be added to your handbook, printed off for posting on site and/or shared with families to inform them of your practices in maintaining a healthy environment.

Water Quality & Health Council has a great post (with posters) on HOW TO SANITIZE AND DISINFECT SURFACES IN CHILDCARE ENVIRONMENTS including a link to The National Association for the Education of Young Children Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Disinfecting Frequency Table.

GOOD hand hygiene is the most effective way to prevent the spread of infections. Next comes creating a clean environment. That cleaning starts with regular soap, water and a good scrib.


Cleaning is an important first step in removing disease-causing microorganisms. Cleaning means physical removing visible dirt and organic matter from objects using some type of soap, warm water and friction (scrubbing/rubbing action). Cleaning physically removes some germs such as bacteria, viruses, parasites, moulds. It does not kill all of them. Some will remain on the cleaned surface. If not cleaned first however, the dirt and organic matter on surfaces can coat and protect germs causing any further disinfection processes to be ineffective. Cleaning solutions such as soaps and detergents should be appropriate for the type of surface or items being cleaned. 

Last modified: February 19, 2020


Disinfecting/sanitizing is the next step in reducing the number of germs from any surface. This process will reduce the number of germs to an acceptable level (all germs will never be removed). This process is achieved by using either high temperature water during the rinse cycle (e.g. commercial dishwashers at greater than 82℃/180℉) or chemical solutions. Many chemical disinfectants are available. Chemical manufacturing labels with information and instructions should be read and followed carefully. These processes do NOT sterilize items.

Three-Step Cleaning and Disinfecting Method
  • Step 1: CLEAN: Use soap, water and a clean cloth/brush. Scrubbing to clean.
  • Step 2: Rinse: Use clean water and a clean cloth or place under running water.
  • Step 3: Disinfect: Apply chemical following provided directions (strength and contact time) to the surface.

Check out this detailed article by EXTENSION ALLIANCE FOR BETTER CHILD CARE on Disinfecting child care surfaces with a bleach and water solution.

Huron Perth Public Health is one of 35 health units in Ontario and has some great information charts on disinfectants:

EPA’s Registered Antimicrobial Products for Use Against Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2, the Cause of COVID-19