Detergent

Asked September 10, 2013, 6:10 PM EDT

How healthy is it to use an antiseptic as a cleaning agent in order to allow the reuse of extremely dirty glass bottles?

Outside United States

1 Response

I wish I knew more about your situation with the dirty glassware. A nice thing about good, undamaged glassware is that it is easy to clean and does not absorb materials or contaminants.

Your question is not very different than many questions we receive for cleaning up after a flood or other disaster. The first step in the clean-up and recovery process is to remember to protect yourself and others that are involved in the clean-up. If the glassware is contaminated, you need to identify the contaminants, protect yourself appropriately, and select the right cleaning products. If there is bacterial contaminants suspected, you should wear goggles, rubber gloves, and an N-95 mask for your protection. Then thoroughly clean (wash) the glassware with a good soap or detergent to remove all the dirt. Soaps and detergents are generally pretty good disinfectants on their own, but you can get a more complete sanitizing with a bleach-solution rinse. Allow the glassware to dry. The bleach will volatilize off the glassware during drying, and your glass bottles should be good for most uses. The important thing is to get the dirt washed away first.

See the information at this link for more details: http://web.extension.illinois.edu/disaster/facts/clean-q.cfm