Flushing Toilets

Closing toilet lid pre-flush does not reduce spread of viral particles

A new study published last week in the American Journal of Infection Control demonstrates that viral particles spread to many washroom surfaces during toilet flushing – regardless of whether the toilet lid is up or down. The researchers say that the only meaningful way of reducing viral particles during the study, was through disinfection of the toilet, toilet water and nearby surfaces.

The study also reviewed the effects of cleaning the toilet, both with and without disinfectant. Cleaning with only the brush left behind substantial contamination, but cleaning the toilet bowl with a disinfectant and brush significantly reduced the amount of virus found in the toilet. Results show that adding disinfectant to the toilet bowl before flushing, or using disinfectant dispensers in the toilet tank, were both effective ways to reduce contamination from flushing.

Additional findings from the study include:

* Cleaning with a disinfectant and brush reduced viral contamination on the toilet by more than 99.99% and on the brush by 97.64%.
* Closing the toilet lid may alter the direction of the aerosol plume. In this study, floor surfaces in front of and to the left of the toilet were more contaminated after flushing with a closed lid than with an open lid, and floor surfaces to the right of the toilet were less contaminated.

This is all useful data and information for our cleaning teams who are continually looking for ways to improve toilet cleanliness.

Thansk to Association for Professionals in Infection Control & Epidemiology for this research and data.

February 8, 2024 10:57 am

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