COVID on your clothes? Here’s what you need to know…
Although a research letter published by the New England Journal of Medicine states that the coronavirus does not live long on clothing, it can still transfer to your clothes in certain situations. For example, you may touch or lean against a surface that contains the virus and get it on your clothing. Medical staff treating patients with COVID-19 also run the risk of getting the virus on their clothes or uniform.
If you feel concerned that you may have the coronavirus on your clothing, the best thing you can do is expose your clothes to high heat. While at room temperature, the COVID-19 virus can remain on clothing for up to two days. This compares to a timeframe of up to seven days for surfaces made from plastic or metal. However, high heat can kill the coronavirus within five minutes. You will need to wash your clothes on a high heat cycle as soon as you get home. Here are a few pointers to help with the process:
Tips for Washing Clothes with Possible COVID-19 Contamination
The first step in ridding your clothing of possible coronavirus contamination is to place them directly into the washing machine when you remove them. You should avoid shaking out the clothes to remove dirt or dust since that could potentially release COVID-19 into the air in your laundry room. Next, choose the warmest setting of water on your wash machine that your clothes can withstand.
You may want to add color-safe bleach to your load of laundry which has proven to deactivate the coronavirus in some studies. When the washing machine finishes its cycle, transfer your clothes to the dryer immediately rather than allowing them to dry naturally.
Washing Clothing of Another Household Member with COVID-19
You may need to take over laundry duties for a family member who becomes ill with the coronavirus. If so, place that person’s clothing in a separate laundry basket or hamper that you have lined with a disposable plastic bag.
You can then wash your sick family member’s clothing using the same steps you would use for your own clothing. Be sure to disinfect the laundry basket or hamper after removing the clothing of the person with COVID-19. Don’t forget to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water after removing the clothing from the wash machine and then again after taking clothes out of the dryer.
You will want to use a disinfectant wipe on the buttons, knobs, or handles of both the wash machine and clothes dryer. Lastly, clean the inside of the washer and dryer with a different disinfectant wipe than you used on the outer exterior of the machines. By taking these extra steps, it should prevent the virus from transferring to the next set of clothes in the washer or dryer.
Sarah’s Appliance Repair Takes Extra Precautions When Serving Our Customers
We have instructed our technicians to follow the Center for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines when coming to your home to repair an appliance. You can learn more about our COVID-19 precautions here or contact us with additional questions or to arrange service.
The post How Long Can COVID Last on Clothes and What Do I Do About It? appeared first on Appliance Repair New Mexico.