What to clean, and how often

Surfaces frequently touched by multiple people — like door handles, desks, phones, light switches, tables, countertops, toilets and faucets — should be cleaned and disinfected at least daily. More frequent cleaning and disinfection may be required based on level of use.

How to clean and disinfect

Research personnel:
Refer to laboratory signage and your manager’s guidance regarding cleaning laboratory spaces and equipment.

Most surfaces and objects will just need normal, routine cleaning.

  • Disinfect using an EPA-approved disinfectant.
  • If an EPA-approved disinfectant is unavailable, you can use 1/3-cup of bleach added to one (1) gallon of water, or 70% alcohol solutions to disinfect. Do not mix bleach or other cleaning and disinfection products together.

Clean items and surfaces that are visibly soiled with soap and water before using disinfectant.

  • Use disinfectant to disinfect all items and horizontal surfaces.
  • Recommend use of EPA-registered household disinfectant. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions on the label to ensure safe and effective use of the product.
  • Many products recommend keeping surface wet for designated amount of time (see product label).

Take precautions, such as making sure you have good ventilation while using the product.

Electronics, such as tablets, touch screens, keyboards and remote controls, need special care.

  • Consider putting a wipeable cover on electronics.
  • Follow manufacturer’s instruction for cleaning and disinfecting.
  • If no guidance, use alcohol-based wipes or sprays containing at least 70% alcohol and dry surface thoroughly.

More about cleaning your gear
WUSM IT Support Services has additional guidelines for how to safely clean your technology. Questions? Call the Service Desk at 314-933-3333, or email ITHelp@wustl.edu.

Clean hands often.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for 20 seconds.
  • Hand sanitizer: If soap and water are not readily available and hands are not visibly dirty, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. However, if hands are visibly dirty, always wash hands with soap and water.
  • Always wash immediately after removing gloves and after contact with a person who is sick.

Office disinfection after COVID-19 exposure

For cleaning and disinfection after a person suspected/confirmed to have COVID-19 has been in your work space:

  • Close off for 24 hours, or as long as practical, any area the person has visited for more than 15 minutes in the past day.
  • If individual works in open-concept area, close off the workstation for 24 hours, or as long as practical.
  • Contact WUSM’s Custodial Services to arrange for deep cleaning and disinfection of work spaces, common areas, bathrooms, conference rooms, etc., by calling the Facilities Integrated Service Center at 314-362-3100.