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Bubbles and Foam

Cleaning vs. Sanitizing vs. Disinfecting


When we talk about cleaning a childcare facility, it’s important to distinguish the differences among cleaning, sanitizing, and disinfecting. Cleaning is the process of removing visible dirt and debris, as well as some germs, from a surface. You usually use soap and water for this process, and it may leave some germs behind.

Disinfecting kills or removes more germs than cleaning does, but it doesn’t necessarily remove enough of them to make the surface or object safe. Disinfecting usually involves using a chemical like Bleach or ammonia to kill viruses. Sanitizing aims to remove most or all germs, including both viruses and bacteria, to reduce populations to a safe level.

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