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When Should St. Louis Office Cleaners Clean, Disinfect, or Sanitize?

This is a common question that gets asked in the Office Cleaners Industry. As professional cleaners, we deal with a host of different surfaces that host dirt, grime, bacteria and germs. Here are some tips to help you how you should clean your office.

St. Louis Office Cleaners

Low-Risk Surfaces

Cleaning low-risk surfaces such as windows and floors where you are least likely to contract a pathogen is just cleaning. Most cleaning solutions today will sanitize to some degree. It will help to reduce these pathogens on these surfaces.


Cleaning alone will always help to make your office environment healthier and more pleasant for the occupants. Cleaning surfaces in your office are meant to remove visible dirt, dust, and grime. Sanitizing a surface does not kill bacteria. It does reduce the occurrence of bacteria, germs, and viruses. If you are looking to kill these germs, you will need to disinfect the most important areas in your office to stop the spread.


When you sanitize, you are reducing/killing the bacteria that is present on that surface, but you are not getting rid of the viruses and fungus that are still present. Sanitizing is a better solution than cleaning alone, but the goal in your office is to get rid of the bacteria, viruses and other pathogens. When you hire St. Louis Office Cleaners you get a crew of professionals that understand the difference between cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting.


Do disinfectant wipes allow for enough dwell time to meet kill claims?

Ready-to-use wipes with short dwell times are ideal for high-traffic areas. By selecting ready-to-use wipes with a strong substrate and that stay wet longer, staff can disinfect greater surface areas with fewer wipes reducing costs and delivering better value for facilities. Using the right disinfecting wipes with the fastest kill times coupled with implementation of standardized cleaning protocols, commercial facilities should see a return on investment while never compromising on clean.


Year-round (with peaks during cold and flu season), the spread of norovirus, influenza, rhinovirus and other common illnesses present a challenge to the cleaning staff responsible for eliminating germs with proper cleaning and disinfecting. Staff will often turn to wipes for a convenient solution and can be confident they are killing germs of the highest concern.

— Lynda Lurie, marketing manager, Clorox Professional Products Co., Oakland, Calif.


The Differences in cleaning


Cleaning is done with soap and water and some type of scrubbing instrument. Cleaning does not kill bacteria, viruses, or fungi. These are typically referred by most people as “germs.” Cleaning products are primarily designed to remove dirt and grime from the surface you are cleaning.



These products are chemicals that are designed to kill germs. They are called antimicrobial pesticides. They are regulated by the EPA. Sanitizers don’t kill all the germs. They are meant to reduce the spread of germs. In most cases, the surface is cleaned first then sanitized. Some products on the market do both, clean and sanitize.

If you look at the back of the hand sanitizer bottle, you’ll notice that is will say it kills 98 or 99% of germs. Sanitizing will only kill certain germs and not all.



Disinfecting is how hospitals treat every surface to prevent the spread of HAI’s. Disinfectants are antimicrobial pesticides that are designed to kill 100% of bacteria, viruses, and fungi. They are used when you want to clean and sterilize the surface from all germs.


Each facility is treated differently depending on the level of cleaning that they require. Hospitals focus on disinfecting surfaces because they are in a healthcare facility. Where a machine shop that is dealing with oil and metal parts isn’t focused on cleaning to that level. They are more concerned about dirt, grime, and other areas. That is why at Grimebusters, Inc. we treat each customer in the St. Louis region differently. We clean their facility based on their needs and the type of business environment they have.



Rick is the President of Grimebusters, Inc. located in Bellville, Illinois. Providing Quality, Dependable, Value DrivenCommercial Cleaning Services For St. Louis and Metro East Region Since 1989. We Understand Customers Needs and Value Those Trusted Relationships As The Foundations Of Our Success!

What Does A Cleaning Service Cost?

When it's time to look for a new cleaning service it may seem like a daunting task. Our FREE pricing guide will help you to determine what a cleaning service should cost for your facility. Here's what's in our guide:

  • What factors determine costs
  • How to request a fair cleaning quote
  • How to compare hidden cost in cleaning
  • Rooms and Square footage for cleaning