Coronavirus- What you need to know
Updated: Jul 14
The Coronavirus (COVID-19) is quickly spreading throughout the world and cleaning companies play an important role in reducing the chance of spread. But many are not prepared so The Janitorial Store has compiled some of the most useful information to help you deal with this fast-spreading virus.
Thanks to ISSA, the CDC, OSHA, and other resources for some of this information.
Regarding communication with your clients, if you have not yet contacted them about the precautions you are taking and recommendations, then do so as soon as possible. We are seeing many facilities reaching out and relying on their cleaning company to provide them with a plan. Not only do they want to know what you're currently doing to disinfect their building, but they also want to know if you have a plan for major cleanup should an employee or visitor have been diagnosed with the virus.
Resources for Information about Coronavirus (COVID-19)
We recently sent out a Pandemic Plan for COVID-19 to our members. We have decided to open that up for any cleaning company or individual that needs it. Download the link below.
Considerations for How to Charge for COVID 19 Cleanup
Many cleaning companies are finding that their clients want them to provide disinfecting service for their facility.
How do you price this service? You can price it by the square foot or by the hour.
What is the density of objects in the facility? This will make a difference in what you might charge.
What is the number of desks, tables, chairs, equipment, etc that are in the facility?
Per square foot, pricing is ranging from .10 - .75 per square foot.
Pricing by the hour could be $60.00 plus the cost of supplies.
Electrostatic sprayers can do up to 23,000 square feet with 2.5 gallons of solution. You can set your own per-hour pricing for this service. Take into consideration what the client wants to be done.
Do they want on-call service, recurring service, one-time treatment? Keep in mind that depending on the tip size you're using you will use more or less solution. Common tip sizes are 60-80-110 micron. When using the larger output of solution the dwell time is longer.
Large output - 10 minutes.Medium output - 4-10 minutesSanitizing - 2 minutes
What about foggers?
You can use foggers, but in most cases, you will need to clean surfaces before treating them.
Foggers can treat 6,000 cubic square feet at a time. The Power-Flite Commercial Fogger — Model# PF04 sprays up to 25ft. with full coverage. Pricing per square foot would be similar to those prices listed above per hour pricing - you'll want to workload the job.
Residential Cleaning Companies - How to Help Your Homeowner Clients
If you have not yet contacted your clients, you must do so as soon as possible! Some of your clients are concerned and are asking for your assistance to keep their homes clean and sanitized. You must put protocols in place for cleaning their homes properly (see resources above).
Other clients are concerned that your employees may be bringing the Coronavirus into their homes and may want to cancel service and do the cleaning themselves. Here are their main concerns:
Your employees are unknowingly sick and could bring the virus into their home. You are using your own vacuum cleaners and other tools that have been in other homes and you could be spreading the virus that way.
Again, follow the correct protocols and send them information on specifically what you are doing to protect their home and family. For example:
Let them know what kind of disinfecting cleaner you are using and that it is on the list of disinfectants approved by the EPA give them a list of the surfaces you will be disinfecting. They may not be fully aware of all the surfaces that we touch frequently in our homes. You have 3 options when deciding how to handle vacuuming.
You can disinfect your vacuums after leaving each home you clean you can use the client's vacuum cleaner you can skip vacuuming altogether, letting your client handle that, and focus most of your efforts on disinfecting surfaces.
Be proactive in these circumstances and communicate with your clients with care and concern. Even if they temporarily discontinue services, stay in touch until things calm down and reconnect in order to get them back on your schedule. Most of you weathered the storm of the economic downturn a few years ago and you'll be able to do it through this crisis too!
See the next article for recommendations for cleaning households with suspected or confirmed cases of Coronavirus. Many of these recommendations can be implemented as you clean for your clients.
Interim Recommendations for US Households with Suspected/Confirmed Coronavirus Disease 2019 (From the CDC)
There is much to learn about the novel coronavirus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Based on what is currently known about the novel coronavirus and similar coronaviruses that cause SARS and MERS, spread from person-to-person with these viruses happens most frequently among close contacts (within about 6 feet). This type of transmission occurs via respiratory droplets. On the other hand, the transmission of novel coronavirus to persons from surfaces contaminated with the virus has not been documented. Transmission of coronavirus occurs much more commonly through respiratory droplets than through fomites. Current evidence suggests that novel coronavirus may remain viable for hours to days on surfaces made from a variety of materials. Cleaning of visibly dirty surfaces followed by disinfection is a best practice measure for the prevention of COVID-19 and other viral respiratory illnesses in households and community settings.
This guidance provides recommendations on the cleaning and disinfection of households where persons under investigation (PUI) or those with confirmed COVID-19 reside or maybe in self-isolation. It is aimed at limiting the survival of the virus in the environment. These recommendations will be updated if additional information becomes available.
These guidelines are focused on household settings and are meant for the general public.
Cleaning refers to the removal of germs, dirt, and impurities from surfaces. Cleaning does not kill germs, but by removing them, it lowers their numbers and the risk of spreading infection. Disinfecting refers to using chemicals to kill germs on surfaces. This process does not necessarily clean dirty surfaces or remove germs, but by killing germs on a surface after cleaning, it can further lower the risk of spreading infection.
General Recommendations for Routine Cleaning and Disinfection of Households
Community members can practice routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces (for example tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks) with household cleaners and EPA-registered disinfectants that are appropriate for the surface, following label instructions. Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during the use of the product.
General Recommendations for Cleaning and Disinfection of Households with People Isolated in Home Care (e.g. Suspected/Confirmed to have COVID-19)
Household members should educate themselves about COVID-19 symptoms and preventing the spread of COVID-19 in homes. Clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces daily in household common areas (e.g. tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, light switches, remotes, handles, desks, toilets, sinks)In the bedroom/bathroom dedicated for an ill person: consider reducing cleaning frequency to as-needed (e.g., soiled items and surfaces) to avoid unnecessary contact with the ill person.
As much as possible, an ill person should stay in a specific room and away from other people in their home, following home care guidance. The caregiver can provide personal cleaning supplies for an ill person's room and bathroom unless the room is occupied by a child or another person for whom such supplies would not be appropriate. These supplies include tissues, paper towels, cleaners, and EPA-registered disinfectants. If a separate bathroom is not available, the bathroom should be cleaned and disinfected after each use by an ill person. If this is not possible, the caregiver should wait as long as practical after use by an ill person to clean and disinfect the high-touch surfaces. Household members should follow home care guidance when interacting with persons with suspected/confirmed COVID-19 and their isolation rooms/bathrooms.
How to clean and disinfect: Surfaces
Wear disposable gloves when cleaning and disinfecting surfaces. Gloves should be discarded after each cleaning. If reusable gloves are used, those gloves should be dedicated to cleaning and disinfection of surfaces for COVID-19 and should not be used for other purposes. Consult the manufacturer's instructions for cleaning and disinfection products used. Clean hands immediately after gloves are removed. If surfaces are dirty, they should be cleaned using a detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection. For disinfection, diluted household bleach solutions, alcohol solutions with at least 70% alcohol, and most common EPA-registered household disinfectants should be effective.
Diluted household bleach solutions can be used if appropriate for the surface. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for application and proper ventilation. Check to ensure the product is not past its expiration date. Never mix household bleach with ammonia or any other cleanser. Unexpired household bleach will be effective against coronaviruses when properly diluted.
Prepare a bleach solution by mixing:5 tablespoons (1/3rd cup) bleach per gallon of water or4 teaspoons bleach per quart of water products with EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claims are expected to be effective against COVID-19 based on data for harder to kill viruses. Follow the manufacturer's instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products (e.g., concentration, application method and contact time, etc.).For soft (porous) surfaces such as carpeted floor, rugs, and drapes, remove visible contamination if present and clean with appropriate cleaners indicated for use on these surfaces. After cleaning:
Launder items as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely, or
Use products with the EPA-approved emerging viral pathogens claim that are suitable for porous surfaces.
Clothing, towels, linens and other items that go in the laundry
Wear disposable gloves when handling dirty laundry from an ill person and then discard after each use. If using reusable gloves, those gloves should be dedicated to cleaning and disinfection of surfaces for COVID-19 and should not be used for other household purposes. Clean hands immediately after gloves are removed.
If no gloves are used when handling dirty laundry, be sure to wash hands afterward. If possible, do not shake dirty laundry. This will minimize the possibility of dispersing the virus through the air. Launder items as appropriate in accordance with the manufacturer's instructions. If possible, launder items using the warmest appropriate water setting for the items and dry items completely. Dirty laundry from an ill person can be washed with other people's items. Clean and disinfect clothes hampers according to the guidance above for surfaces. If possible, consider placing a bag liner that is either disposable (can be thrown away) or can be laundered.
Hand hygiene and other preventive measures
Household members should clean hands often, including immediately after removing gloves and after contact with an ill person, by washing hands with soap and water for 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available and hands are not visibly dirty, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol may be used. However, if hands are visibly dirty, always wash hands with soap and water. Household members should follow normal preventive actions while at work and home including recommended hand hygiene and avoiding touching eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
Additional key times to clean hands include: After blowing one's nose, coughing, or sneezing after using the restroom before eating or preparing food after contact with animals or pets before and after providing routine care for another person who needs assistance (e.g. a child)
The ill person should eat/be fed in their room if possible.
Non-disposable food service items used should be handled with gloves and washed with hot water or in a dishwasher.
Clean hands after handling used food service items. If possible, dedicate a lined trash can for the ill person.
Use gloves when removing garbage bags, handling, and disposing of trash.
Wash hands after handling or disposing of trash.
Consider consulting with your local health department about trash disposal guidance if available.
Innovative Cleaning Solutions is a cleaning company that provides Housecleaning services. If you are in need of a clean and don't have the time, book your FREE Estimate now! For more information about Innovative cleaning Solutions visit our website.