We have been receiving requests from potential customers for an aerosol disinfectant fogger. Some requests come from school districts where the application will be for classrooms or for use on the school's buses. Other requests have come from office buildings, retail stores, manufacturing concerns, and building service contractors. The convenience of a fogger may be obvious, but its efficacy should be of concern.
Aerosol foggers spray a fine mist of disinfectant into the air with the expectation that the product will fully blanket a predetermined area. The coverage may be intact, but the calculated outcome has grievously missed the mark. In fact, the CDC does not recommend aerosol foggers – particularly for Covid-19. Do not anticipate that all disinfectants are effective for Covid-19*. And not all disinfectants are considered applicable for use, by mechanical fogging methods (foggers, electrostatic sprayers).
The pandemic has created a huge demand for additional hygiene efforts and many custodial workers were unfortunately unaware of the proper procedures and protocols necessary to safeguard their workplace. A person with the best knowledge of proper procedures using inadequate chemistry will fail at disinfection. Furthermore, a person utilizing the best chemistry without proficiency in the best methodology will also fail.
A cardinal understanding is that all disinfectants require a precise dwell time on a surface to be functional. Typical dwell times for water-based disinfectants are 10 minutes. Imagine using an aerosol fogger in a warm/hot bus – the fine mist would evaporate in seconds. Thus, no sanitation at all!
There are many products being marketed with dubious claims. Be certain to have a well-founded resource with associations to accredited organizations.
To verify your cleaning and sanitation efforts an ATP monitoring system should be in place. These devices help organizations achieve optimal standardized cleaning levels with a simple swab test. Accurate results are available in seconds. For information, please see - Rapid Cleaning Verification Methods.
Now that you are aware of dwell times, please notice how quickly restaurant personnel spray & wipe down a table. Once again it's usually seconds. - Not to mention that the wipe previously used is contaminated, to begin with...
We all want to get back to an approximation of "normal". Certainty and the validity of hygiene practices are a necessity in order to be guarded, whether in the workplace, shopping, recreation, or dining.
*The EPA has published their “List N” detailing disinfectants effective against coronavirus.