Why DIY Disinfectant Wipes are a Bad Idea

During the COVID-19 pandemic, demand for disinfectant wipes exploded, leaving many store shelves empty and facility managers wondering if taking a DIY-approach could be helpful. This is a bad idea for many reasons, and using DIY disinfectant wipes can actually jeopardize the health and safety of your employees and customers, violate federal law and even increase the risk of infection.

Legal Concerns

You probably already know that any disinfectant sold or distributed in the US must be registered with the EPA, but disinfectant wipes must also be registered. This means that even if you use a liquid disinfectant that is registered to make your own wipes, those wipes must have a unique EPA registration number.

Only registered wipes that are manufactured in a registered facility can make kill claims. DIY wipes can’t claim to kill any bacteria, fungi, mold or wipes because the EPA has not approved their efficacy data and end-user back rooms are simply not EPA registered facilities.

Furthermore, making DIY wipes with a product can go against it’s labeling, which is a violation of federal law.

In the workplace, all disinfectant wipes must not only be EPA-approved, but they must also be accompanied by an SDS (Safety Data Sheet. Remember, SDSs and labels for disinfectants are not transferable to wipes made from them.

Safety and Health Concerns

Any and every product registered by the EPA has been tested extensively for irritation, toxicity and sensitization hazards. DIY wipes haven’t been safety tested in the same manner, which means you have no way of knowing safe handling details, proper use requirements, exposure controls, first aid measures, proper storage guidelines or toxicological information.

This puts you and your cleaning team and visitors at potential risk for organ damage, skin corrosion, toxic vapors, increased incidence of cancer and serious eye damage.

Stability and Efficacy

The testing methods used by the EPA to register disinfectant wipes are different than those used for spray disinfectants. This is vital because the materials used in wipes may absorb the disinfectant formula differently, leading to a discrepancy in disinfection efficacy. The amount of liquid in disinfectant wipes is also tightly controlled by the EPA through its registration process, ensuring that wipes are not oversaturated or at risk of prematurely drying out.

Given all of this, there’s simply no good reason to take the DIY-approach when it comes to disinfectant wipes. Instead, we highly recommend Flex Disinfectant Wipes, now available in our online catalog. This EPA-registered product contains a heavy-duty disinfectant that cleans, disinfects and deodorizes in one labor-saving step. It kills 99.99% of bacteria in just 15 seconds, and best of all, gives you peace of mind knowing that your product is effective and safe. Click here to order today!