Difference Between Cleaning, Sanitising, Disinfecting & Sterilisation

Difference Between Cleaning, Sanitising, Disinfecting & Sterilisation


You must have an idea about most of the things related with word “Cleaning”. Either you have heard about it or have read about it.

Few of you might have availed the professional cleaning services such as Home Cleaning, Sofa Cleaning, Carpet Cleaning, Bathroom Cleaning, Kitchen Cleaning, Office Cleaning etc sometime in past from professional companies like Dirtblaster Cleaning Services in Pune.

But lately you have been hearing about the words like Sanitising, Disinfecting, and Sterilisation etc. In normal day-to-day uses, these words are used interchangeably, though there is a big difference between them.

In this article we will try to find out the meaning of these words and difference between them.

What Is Cleaning?

Cleaning is removing visible dirt, spots, stains and debris from the surfaces. It is basically organising and wiping down the surfaces with cleaning solution.

Cleaning won’t kill germs like bacteria, viruses or fungi.

The cleaning solution can be any all purpose cleaner available in the market or made at home.

Check this article to know how to make all purpose cleaner using vinegar at home.

There are two types of cleaning, normal cleaning and deep cleaning. Find out the difference between normal cleaning and home deep cleaning here.

Cleaning can remove the germs from surfaces but the basic purpose of cleaning is to make your surfaces look nice and shiny.

It is ok to clean the surfaces but few surfaces such as surfaces in bathrooms, kitchen or in public areas need to be sanitised or disinfected for greater benefits.

What Is Sanitising?

Sanitising is interchangeably used for word cleaning. Sanitising has the same purpose as that of cleaning that is removing visible contamination and debris and reducing the number of germs on the surface to the lowest possible level.

What Is Disinfecting?

Disinfecting is killing everything on any surface. Sanitising lowers the level of germs on the surface while disinfecting literally kills them all.

It is very important to clean the surface before applying any disinfectant to it. The dirt present on the surface makes the disinfectants less effective.

What Is Sterilisation?

Sterilisation is removing and killing all microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi and viruses present on any surface.

Sterilisation is totally killing of all microscopic organisms on a surface.

Sterilisation can be achieved through various means including heat, chemicals, irradiation, high pressure and filtration. (Source- Wikipedia)

Sanitising Vs Disinfecting

Both sanitising and disinfecting aims to kill germs but in simple words disinfecting kills more germs than sanitising.

Sanitisers reduce overall number of microbes on any surface. Sanitisers have more broad and immediate use against the microbes that make us sick.

Disinfectants have stronger effect on microbes than sanitisers.

Disinfectants require to stay on the surface for some time to be effective. Read the instructions on the label for better understanding.

Sanitising is little gentle process. While disinfecting is more powerful process and uses strong chemicals.

When To Sanitise Or Disinfect Or Sterilise?

Sanitising is basically done for the surfaces which don’t come in contact with seriously dangerous bacteria or those things on which strong chemicals should not be used.

The examples are cooking tools or kitchen counter tops or toys which children even put into their mouth.

Disinfecting is very much necessary for the surfaces which come in contact with bodily fluids, meat or blood.

In case of your home, you may need to disinfect toilet or bathroom or sinks. Disinfecting is also suggested when someone in your home is sick.

Sterilisation is primarily required in health care industry or where elderly healthcare is take place.

How To Sanitise Or Disinfect Or Sterilise?

Bleach can be used to sanitise as well as to disinfect the surfaces.

Lower concentration of bleach with water is a good sanitising chemical product. There are sanitisers available in the market in the form of liquids, sprays, powders.

Higher and strong concentration of bleach and water is a good disinfectant cleaner. Hydrogen peroxide can also be used as a disinfectant cleaner.

Sterilisation can be done by applying high pressure, heat, filtration and/or using chemicals.

How Often Should It Be Done?

How often should anything be cleaned depends on how often it is used. If you see any visible dirtiness, it is time to clean it or you can maintain the cleaning schedule to avoid germs settling on it.

Disinfection of your bathrooms or toilets can be done once a week.

If you are allergic to something or if there is viral outbreak in your region, get your home sterilised from professionals.

Avoid Overuse Of Disinfectant

Disinfecting wipes are cheap and easily available. They smell nice too. Hence disinfectants are quite popular.

But the fact is disinfection is not necessary for routine cleaning. It should not be replaced with regular cleaning process.

Disinfecting is absolutely necessary when someone is sick inside your house or when some surface comes in contact with meat, blood or bodily fluids.

Overuse of these disinfectant chemicals can lead to Asthma, Allergies and other health concerns.

Limited exposure to living bacteria is actually healthy for us. It can strengthen our immune system. But overuse of disinfectant chemicals can lead to ‘superbugs’ or bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics.

For disinfecting services in Pune and Pimpri Chinchwad area, call professional cleaners from Dirtblaster Cleaning Services.

Call now on 7350321321 or visit www.dirtblaster.in/bathroom-cleaning