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Why is QAC the right disinfectant?

February 22, 2021

Why is it important to choose the right disinfectant?

COVID-19 has brought unprecedented challenges to everyone. It is important to equip ourselves with the right disinfectant to make sure the environment we stay in is clean and safe. However, with so many disinfectants out in the market, how do we ensure they are effective, safe, and compatible?

What is all the fuss about QACs?

Quaternary Ammonium Compounds, commonly known as QACs or quats, are amongst the most widely used disinfectants in the market. There are many different types of QACs, and are often used in places such as hospitals, day care centres, restaurants and homes. A recent review article by Schrank et al. showed various types of QAC at varying concentrations are effective at reducing viral contamination by 99% – 99.9999% (2-6 log10 reduction).

Why is it better than other classes of disinfectants?

One of the main advantages of QACs is that they do not damage textile / carpets and metal surfaces, whereas oxidizing chemicals (i.e. hydrogen peroxide, bleach) would. Furthermore, QACs are often used in very low concentrations (<1.0%) and pose limited health hazards. This is in stark contrast to other common alcohol-based cleaners, which typically requires high concentration (>60%). This creates high potential for creating volatile-organic-compounds (VOCs), which can be found in petroleum fuels, paint thinners, and dry-cleaning agents. When it is used indoors, it may lead to significant health hazards and risks.

Final remarks

  1. Choosing the right disinfectant is KEY – you need to balance the disinfectants’ effectiveness against germs, but also the health hazards it will pose to you and your family.
  2. Beware of material compatibility and VOCs when using oxidizing-based or alcohol-based disinfectants.
  3. QACs are widely used and tested in all environment – scientifically proven to be effective against VIRUSES!

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