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Pew! Get rid of that restroom smell—and germs

 

One thing sure to turn off parents and visitors to your facility is a smelly restroom. If it smells like urine, they will question your sanitation practices. If it smells like ammonia or chlorine, they may worry about human and environmental health.
Ideally a restroom is odor-free. You won’t smell a perfume either—that may just disguise the odor. How can you rid your restroom of nasty odors? How can you do it without harming people and the environment?

 

What causes restroom odors?
Odors can be common in early childhood facilities because preschoolers are still learning toileting and hygienic practices. Their unskilled attempts and frequent accidents can leave behind traces of urine and fecal matter. These substances, if not removed promptly, can provide a food source for bacteria. Given a restroom’s moisture and a warm temperature, the bacteria thrive (Weise 2002).

Odors can also arise from adult failures. Poor cleaning or lack of custodial supervision, improper installation of toilets, and neglect in repairing leaks and cracks can encourage the growth of all kinds of germs (microorganisms such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi, including mold).

Getting rid of germs not only eliminates odors but also reduces the risk of disease. The main way to do that is to clean properly.

 

What is proper cleaning?
Although restroom cleaning may be delegated to custodial staff, the responsibility for making sure it’s done properly belongs to the director and teachers. Cleaning is so critical to children’s health and safety that procedures are specified in regulatory and accreditation standards.

Standards typically refer to cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting. The terms are sometimes used interchangeably, so it’s important to know who’s using the terms and how the words are defined.

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (2012) defines the terms this way:

Cleaning: physically removing all dirt and contamination, oftentimes using soap and water

Sanitizing: reducing germs on inanimate surfaces to levels considered safe by public health codes or regulations

Disinfecting: destroying or inactivating most germs on any inanimate object.

The Texas Minimum Standards for Child-Care Centers (2010), as another example, uses the three terms as part of a four-step procedure labeled a sanitizing process:
1. cleaning with soap and water
2. rinsing
3. spraying with disinfectant
4. air drying

Cleaning. Cleaning with soap and water has been stressed increasingly in recent years. The National Resource Center for Health and Safety in Child Care (2011), for example, says,” Routine cleaning with detergent and water is the most useful method for removing germs in the child care setting.”

Note that that the National Resource Center refers to detergent, while the Texas and NAEYC definitions refer to soap. Is there a difference?

We commonly think of soap as hand-washing bars and detergent as laundry or dishwashing cleaners. Technically, true soap is made from animal fat or vegetable oil plus an alkali. Castile soap, for example, uses olive oil as a base. By contrast, detergent is a synthetic soap, originally made from petroleum derivatives. For a simple science experiment illustrating the difference, see www.letstalkscience.ca/educators/hands-on-activities.html?sobi2Task=sobi2Details&catid=4&sobi2Id=49, produced by the nonprofit Let’s Talk Science organization.

Many soaps on the market today are actually detergents, which tend to work better than soap regardless of the water’s hardness (mineral content). Moreover, most soaps and detergents contain several ingredients, which you can see by reading the label, and can be sold as either a solid or liquid.

For restroom cleaning, a wise choice is a detergent or an all-purpose cleaner whose main purpose is to lift off dirt and contaminants (Centers for Disease Control 2010). Cleaning first—before sanitizing and disinfecting—has become a rule of thumb because most germs attach to dirt. Disinfectants “have no effect on dirt, soil, or dust” (CDC 2010), so using a disinfectant alone or simultaneously with soap can lessen a disinfectant’s effectiveness.

Sanitizing. A sanitizer is appropriate for use on food contact surfaces (dishes, cutting boards) and toys or pacifiers that children put in their mouths (National Resource Center 2011; NAEYC 2012). A sanitizer can be made by adding a tablespoon of household bleach (5-10 percent hypochlorite) to a gallon of cool water.

Disinfecting. A disinfectant is appropriate for use in toileting and diapering areas, particularly on toilets, potty chairs, diaper-changing tables, and diaper pails. In restrooms, the floor and any surface that children and adults touch with their hands—countertops, sinks and faucets, and door and cabinet handles, for example—need disinfecting (National Resource Center 2011, NAEYC 2012).

A disinfectant can be made by increasing the amount of household bleach in a gallon of water. The Texas standards (2010) specify one-fourth cup, while NAEYC (2012) recommends a half to three-fourths cup. Obviously, a disinfectant is stronger than a sanitizer; it’s also effective against more germs (Rose 2009).

As an option to a bleach solution, the Texas standards (2010) and those published by the National Resource Center (2011) allow the use of a commercial antimicrobial product registered by the Environmental Protection Agency. Antimicrobial refers to a substance “used to destroy or suppress the growth of harmful microorganisms whether bacteria, viruses, or fungi on inanimate objects and surfaces” (EPA 2012). The term is not to be confused with antibacterial, which kills only bacteria.

All disinfectants are considered pesticides and regulated by the EPA. A disinfectant must carry an EPA registration number before it can make public health claims that it is effective in killing germs (Rose 2009). EPA registration is helpful because we would not otherwise be able to tell whether a product really works. Popular bleaches like Regular Clorox® as well as commercial antimicrobials are EPA-registered.

Other cleaning products, depending on their ingredients and purpose, may be subject to regulations of other federal agencies such as the Consumer and Product Safety Commission, Occupational Safety and Health Administration, and Food and Drug Administration.

 

Going green
Certainly early childhood facilities need germ killers in restrooms, but at what cost to human health and the environment? According to the Green Schools Initiative website, a number of chemicals in cleaning products have been linked to asthma, cancer, damage to the body’s reproductive and nervous systems, hormone disruption, as well as air and water pollution.

The EPA “does not currently allow environmental claims to be made when describing disinfectants and sanitizers,” but that may change in the near future (Healthy Schools Campaign n.d.). The agency does have a Designed for the Environment (DfE) labeling initiative, however. This program allows a DfE symbol on the label of products whose ingredients have been screened by a science team that has found that “the product contains only those ingredients that pose the least concern among chemicals in their class” (EPA 2012).

How can you evaluate products that claim to be green? Just because a product label says “green” doesn’t mean it’s safe for humans and the environment. One way of checking is to look for designations on the label from independent third parties that don’t stand to benefit from sales.

Two non-profit organizations, Green Seal (www.greenseal.org) and EcoLogo (www.ecologo.org), have certified hundreds of products as green bathroom cleaners, but only EcoLogo includes disinfectants in its list of green cleaners.

Two other organizations offering their stamp of approval to green cleaners are the Good Housekeeping Research Institute, www.goodhousekeeping.com/product-reviews/history/introducing-green-good-housekeeping-seal, and the Sierra Club www.sierraclubgreenhome.com/go-green/cleaning/green-household-cleaning/.

The nonprofit Green Schools Initiatives, www.greenschools.net, offers an online directory of asthma-safe disinfectants and sanitizers, www.greenschools.net/downloads/DisinfectantsTable.pdf. This group also provides guidelines to schools for purchase of green utilities, construction, food services, paper, and supplies.

 

Choosing cleaning products
In selecting a sanitizer and disinfectant for early care and education programs, the top criterion will be compliance with health and safety requirements in regulatory standards. In Texas compliance may rest with the local inspector conducting the annual health inspection.

Another important consideration will be cost—not just the price of the cleaning product and its use in concentrated or diluted form but also the cost of the labor and any equipment needed. Over the long term, there may also be costs associated with effects on children and families, employees, physical structures such as pipes, and the facility’s reputation in the community.

Multi-step cleaning procedures, for example, may incur higher labor costs than one-step procedures. Given tight school budgets, manufacturers have responded by developing one-step products containing both a cleaner and a disinfectant that meet the criteria for EPA registration. The Green Schools Initiative website advises potential buyers to be sure the label says “cleaning-disinfectant.”

Not the least consideration is the potential risk to children and adults posed by the germ-killing ingredients in all cleaning products. Avoid cleaners labeled “Danger” or “Poison.” They pose the highest hazard to humans and the environment. Cleaners with the “Warning” label present a lower hazard, and those with “Caution,” the lowest level of concern.

 

Key antimicrobial ingredients
Descriptions of key active ingredients appear below. Except where noted, much of this information is from the article “Use Safer Disinfectants and Disinfecting Products” on the Green Schools Initiatives website (www.greenschools.net/article.php?id=278).

For a handy chart comparing disinfectants, see the “Comparison Chart for Hard-Surface Disinfectants Registered by the Environmental Protection Agency” in Cleaning for Healthier Schools—Infection Control Handbook 2010 (starting on page 59), on the state of Connecticut website at www.ct.gov/dph/lib/dph/environmental_health/eoha/pdf/cleaning_for_healthier_schools_final_2.4.11.pdf. The handbook itself offers a comprehensive resource on cleaning to prevent disease.

Chlorine bleach. A diluted solution of household bleach has long been the sanitizer and disinfectant of choice in early care and education facilities and schools. If used properly, it’s reliable and inexpensive.

In concentrated form, bleach has a relatively short shelf life and needs to be thrown out after a month. In solution, bleach loses its sanitizing and disinfecting qualities after 24 hours, so it must be prepared fresh every day (Rose and Westinghouse 2011).

The solution’s strength and dwell time (the length of time it should be left on a surface to work properly) varies by regulatory standard and purpose. A typical dwell time (National Resource Center 2011, NAEYC 2012, Rose 2009) is two minutes. The Clorox® website (2012) says a five-minute dwell time will kill 19 kinds of bacteria, viruses, and fungi.

Chlorine bleach solutions can irritate the lungs and mucous membranes when inhaled and therefore can contribute to asthma. For staff who mix bleach solutions, contact with full-strength bleach can harm skin and eyes (Rose 2009). Bleach forms a toxic gas if combined with other cleaning products containing acids or ammonia. From a facility maintenance perspective, regular use of bleach can corrode surfaces, especially metal sinks and pipes (Rose and Westinghouse 2011).

When buying bleach, read the label carefully. Make sure it’s household grade and says it disinfects or kills germs. Clorox® Splashless bleach and Scented Clorox® , for example, specify that they are NOT to be used for sanitizing or disinfecting.

Quarternary ammonium and phenolics. One of these types of compounds is often found in the commercial antimicrobials used in some schools as well as health care facilities such as hospitals and nursing homes.

Quarternary ammonium, commonly called “quats,” may cause skin or eye burns if used in concentrated form and has been linked to asthma. Phenol (used in making hundreds of products including plastics and drugs), may appear in different chemical formulations. One in particular, o-phenylphenol, may cause cancer and should be avoided.

A commercial antimicrobial is appropriate to use in child care, according to the Texas standards (2010), if the label contains the following:
an EPA registration number
directions for use in a medical setting such as a hospital or clinic
a statement that the product can be used safely on food contact surfaces and areas used by children.
Pay special attention to directions for use (National Resource Center 2011, Rose 2009), which may include the following:
cleaning the surface first with soap and water
dwell time (may require as much as 10 minutes)
rinsing before allowing human contact.

Hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is gaining attention as a green cleaner. It does not cause asthma, and it’s biodegradable, breaking down into hydrogen and water. Products containing a non-stable form of peroxide can kill bacteria as well as some viruses, but those containing a stabilized or accelerated form (AHP) are effective against a broader array of germs, including MRSA.

The AHP form is registered as a one-step cleaner disinfectant, but best practices advise precleaning anyway. The dwell time can range from one to 10 minutes. Read the label for instructions.

In low concentrations, peroxide is relatively benign, but in concentrated form, it can be an irritant. Unlike many disinfectants, peroxide may carry the DfE symbol on the label. When buying any peroxide product for use as a disinfectant, make sure it has an EPA registration number.

Botanicals. Thymol, an antimicrobial extracted from the herb thyme, is the active ingredient in some green cleaners. (Thymol is also used in fungicides and antiseptics.) If a thymol disinfectant is EPA-registered, it’s effective against a broad range of germs, including TB and MRSA.

It may require a relatively long (10 minutes) dwell time but no rinsing or wiping. Because thymol is an herb extract (oil), these products require no warning or first-aid statements on the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). The odor has been characterized as strong, although some refer to it as “pleasantly aromatic.”

Products containing thymol may be hard to find in stores, but they can be ordered through a vendor or online. One example is Benefect®.

Manufacturers may bring other botanical products to the market, but their effectiveness as disinfectants will be doubtful unless they have an EPA registration number.

Pine oil. Products containing pine oil have long been marketed for their disinfecting and deodorizing properties. When pine oil is the sole antimicrobial, the product may be effective against bacteria. When pine oil is combined with alcohol or quats, for example, the product may also be effective against fungi or some viruses.

Pine oil is severely irritating to the eyes, can penetrate the skin, and can damage the central nervous system and kidneys.

 

Choosing other cleaning supplies
Besides sanitizer and disinfectant for targeted areas, you will need a product for general cleaning in the restroom. A single all-purpose cleaner may suffice. Because the purpose is to remove dirt and contaminants, the most important selection criteria are effectiveness, cost, and safety.

On the effectiveness and cost criteria, Consumer Reports (2011) recently conducted a test of 16 all-purpose cleaners. All worked well in removing soil and grease from tile or glass. The price ranged widely from 4 to 17 cents an ounce, indicating that a higher price may not mean better cleaning. Interestingly, two of the top three rated cleaners, Nature’s Source® and Seventh Generation® Natural, were green cleaners.

Many homemade and inexpensive alternatives to commercial products can be found in books like Planet Home (2010) and on the Internet. To clean windows, for example, the EPA (2012) suggests mixing a tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice and a quart of water, spraying the solution on windows, and wiping dry with a sheet of newspaper.

The National Geographic website (www.nationalgeographic.com) suggests using baking soda, borax (a naturally occurring mineral), as well as vinegar and lemon juice for a variety of household cleaning tasks. Just remember that these ingredients are not EPA-registered and should not be used as sanitizers or disinfectants.

 

Use products safely
Almost all cleaning products contain ingredients that pose hazards to humans and the environment. Here are safety tips to keep in mind.
Avoid applying sanitizer or disinfectant to every object and surface just in case it may contain germs. The goal is to minimize the use of chemicals.
Keep on hand a Material Safety Data Sheet for every cleaning product. You can find these sheets on the websites of the manufacturers. These sheets contain important information, including ingredients and first-aid instructions. See examples at the following:

> www.clorox.com: www.thecloroxcompany.com/downloads/msds/bleach/cloroxregularbleach0809_.pdf

> www.lysol.com: http://www.hescoinc.com/msds/lysol.html
Store all cleaning products in a locked closet. Even diluted chemical solutions can be hazardous.
Store products in their original containers. For mixed solutions in containers and trigger sprayers, use permanent markers to label the contents.
Never mix products containing chlorine bleach and ammonia. Never mix bleach and strong acids (including vinegar). The combination will produce a toxic chlorine gas.
Don’t spray sanitizers and disinfectants into the air. Spraying into the air has almost no effect in killing germs.
Don’t use air fresheners. Their purpose is to mask odors, not remove them. According to the Green Schools Initiative website, air fresheners that contain a sanitizer or disinfectant “result in unnecessary exposure to pesticides, are generally not effective at germ-killing, and can cause or aggravate asthma and other health effects.”

Note: If you’ve just changed a soiled diaper or a child has just had a smelly bowel movement, you can spray a solution of water mixed with an essential oil like peppermint into the air.
Insist that cleaning personnel wear protective gloves from start to finish. Protective eyewear will guard against accidentally splashing chemicals into the eyes.
Label and keep separate the materials used in cleaning the restroom from those used in classrooms and other parts of your facility.

 

Getting started: Here’s what you need
Until the economic downturn, many schools had started switching from conventional mops and cleaning cloths to microfiber varieties. Microfiber (University of Washington 2011) is a blend of polyester and nylon fibers; each fiber is a fraction of the thickness of a human hair. The higher density of microfiber allows it to pick up more dust particles and absorb better than traditional cloth rags or terry cloth. The tiny fibers of a microfiber mop, for example, are better able to penetrate the porous surface of many floors.

But higher up-front costs and reduced school budgets have slowed the switch to microfiber materials. Though not required by standards, microfiber can be a wise choice. According to one hospital study, microfiber mops clean more effectively, use less water and chemicals, and are less labor-intensive (EPA 2002).

See below for a list of basic restroom cleaning equipment, all of which are available at janitorial supply companies.

Broom and dust pan. Choose almost any broom designed for interior use. The sweeping fibers may be made of either natural or synthetic materials. Avoid push brooms (the kind with a wide head often used outdoors or in warehouses) because they don’t fit well behind restroom fixtures and are hard to clean. A dust pan with a 38-inch-tall handle allows the custodian to stand upright and helps prevent back strain.

An alternative is a dust mop, preferably with a microfiber head and extra washable head pads.

Wet mop. Choose a heavy-duty 24-ounce mop head with looped fibers in a web foot design. This design allows cleaning in tight spaces (behind toilets, for example) and wide coverage of the floor. The looped (not cut) fibers and web foot (band sewn 2 inches above the end) will keep the mop head from getting entangled in the washing machine. In a conventional wet mop, a synthetic viscose (rayon) will dry faster than cotton and won’t sour or rot. Microfiber mop heads are mildew resistant.

An alternative is a flat, rectangular mop head sometimes called a Doodlebug™. (Even though 3M holds the trademark, the name is commonly used in the custodial industry.) The mop head is 10 to 18 inches wide and is ideal for cleaning floor edges and corners as well as walls. You can choose washable pads for the mop holder that suit the difficulty of the job, from damp mopping to scrubbing. (A comparable mop for household use is the Swiffer®.)

Mop bucket and wringer. Choose a 35-quart capacity mop bucket and a wringer. A metal, squeeze-type wringer requires less maintenance than either a plastic wringer or a pressure-type wringer.

Plastic pail. You’ll need one or more pails to hold water for the initial soap-and-water step.

Toilet bowl swab or Johnny mop. Choose an acrylic puff-type swab with 12-inch-tall plastic handle, or 26-inch-tall handle for ergonomic design. A swab is better than a brush because it holds more cleaning product, allows increased surface contact, and won’t scratch the porcelain.

Cleaning cloths. Choose either fabric rags (such as terry cloth) or microfiber cloths for cleaning surfaces. Don’t use sponges because they are hard to clean. Have several cleaning cloths, a different one for each surface. For example, use one cloth for glass and mirrors, one for sinks and countertops, and one for toilet seats and lids.

Paper towels. Use them for drying surfaces.

Trigger sprayers. Have at least two, one for cleaning glass and mirrors and the other for spraying disinfectant.

Rubber gloves. If allergies are a concern, use vinyl gloves. The yellow and blue gloves sold in supermarkets for household cleaning are fine. Latex gloves, which are disposable after use, work well but over time may contribute to an allergic reaction.

 

Infant and toddler rooms
Standards require careful and immediate cleaning of toileting equipment in infant and toddler rooms. Diaper-changing tables and potty chairs must be cleaned and disinfected after each use. (Note: According to NAEYC, use of potty chairs is not recommended because they cannot be flushed and are hard to clean.)

NAEYC also recommends that diapers be disposed of in a container out of reach of children and with a step pedal so that the caregiver is not touching the place where diapers enter the container. Diaper pails should be cleaned and disinfected daily.

The procedure is to clean with detergent, rinse with water, spray with disinfectant, and let air dry.

 

Restroom cleaning schedule and procedures
Make sure that restrooms are cleaned every day, preferably after children and teachers have gone home. A mid-day check helps make sure everything is in order, and a quick cleaning of the toilets at that time is a good idea.

Consider hanging a clipboard outside the restroom and have the custodian check or initial a chart to document each cleaning task every day.

Encourage the custodian to take note of the condition of fixtures while cleaning. Are there any cracks in sinks and toilets? Is the floor wet around the bottom of the toilet, indicating a faulty water seal? Ask all staff to report problems promptly for repair.

Although the sequence of tasks may vary, a general guideline is to go from high to low (ceiling to floor), toward the doorway, and from dry to wet.
1. Prop open the restroom door and open any windows to let in fresh air.
2. Wash and dry hands using soap and water. Put on protective gloves and eyewear.
3. Sweep the floor using a broom or dust mop. Be sure to sweep under the sinks and behind toilets.
4. Spray all-purpose cleaner on mirrors and windows. Wipe dry.
5. Dampen a cloth with all-purpose cleaner and wipe the soap and paper towel dispensers.
6. Spray all-purpose cleaner on countertops, sinks, and faucets. Pay close attention to the sink drain, the underside of the rim, the overflow opening, and the sink base. Rinse all surfaces thoroughly with water. Spray these surfaces with disinfectant and let air dry.
7. Clean the walls behind and around toilets with a flat mop head and all-purpose cleaner. Because little boys are still learning how to aim, the walls may get spattered. If you have sheetrock or plaster walls, consider covering them with plastic laminate several feet high to allow proper cleaning.
8. Wipe the toilet paper dispensers with a cloth dampened with all-purpose cleaner.
9. For each commode and urinal, flush before cleaning. If it’s clogged, use a plunger or plumber’s augur to dig out the blockage. Avoid using commercial drain cleaners because they can corrode pipes and pollute groundwater.
10. Spray all-purpose cleaner on the outside of each commode and urinal, including the tank, handle, toilet seat, and lid. Rinse with water. Use a Johnny mop to swab the interior of each toilet bowl and urinal with all-purpose cleaner. Pay special attention to the underside of the rim where mineral deposits can build up. Flush to rinse. Spray disinfectant on the seat and lid, on the handle, and into the bowl. Let air dry.
11. Clean the restroom door, handle, and kick plate with a cloth dampened with all-purpose cleaner. Rinse and wipe dry. Do the same for light switch plates. Spray disinfectant on the door handle and light switch plate.
12. Take off gloves and refill the soap dispensers, power towels, and toilet paper holders. Avoid placing extra rolls of toilet paper on top of the dispenser because they can be knocked off and become contaminated on the floor.
13. Put gloves back on and empty the wastebasket. Remove the plastic liner and tie closed. Wipe the interior of the wastebasket with a cloth dampened with all-purpose cleaner. Insert a new plastic bag.
14. Mop the floor with all-purpose cleaner, starting at the back and moving toward the door. Ideally the bathroom floor is vinyl; urine is hard to get out of the grout in tile floors. Rinse with water.
15. Mop the floor with the disinfectant, making sure the solution covers the floor around the base of the commodes and under the urinals. Pay special attention to corners and crevices. Let the floor air dry.
16. Wring out the mop. Dip the broom and Johnny mop in the disinfectant solution and shake out the excess. Hang them on a rack to dry. Never store a broom standing up, and don’t leave bowl mops sitting in a pail or sink. Pour remaining disinfectant solution down the floor drain or mop sink.
17. Leave the restroom door open overnight.
18. Wash the mop head and cleaning cloths in the washing machine. Put garbage bags in the trash bin outside.
19. Remove rubber gloves. Wash and dry hands.

 

If odors persist after several days, consider the following:
Review the cleaning schedule. Is the restroom cleaned every day?
Monitor the cleaning procedure more closely. Are the guidelines above being followed?
Check toileting schedules. Do children need more time, a different schedule, or more help?
Check the procedure for disposing of soiled diapers. Are they left in covered containers with plastic liners? Are the plastic liners tied securely and placed in a covered garbage bin outdoors?
Ask a plumber to check the floor drain. If the trap in the floor drain dries out, sewer gas can escape into the restroom.

 

Train staff and children to use proper hygiene.
Teach boys to lift the toilet seat before urinating.
Always flush the toilet after use.
After using the toilet, always wash hands with soap and water.
Do not throw paper towels, soiled diapers, sanitary napkins, and similar materials into the toilet. Dispose of those items in the wastebasket.

 

Where to find green cleaners
Green Schools Initiative. “Buying Guide.” www.greenschools.net/display.php?uid=56&modin=54

 

References
Centers for Disease Control. Aug. 3, 2010. “Environmental Cleaning and Disinfecting for MRSA: What’s the Difference Between Cleaners, Sanitizers, and Disinfectants?” www.cdc.gov/mrsa/environment/.
Clorox.com. 2012. “Clorox® Regular Bleach: FAQs & Facts: What organisms does Clorox® Regular-Bleach kill?” www.clorox.com/products/clorox-regular-bleach/faq/.
Dickey, Philip. n.d. “Antimicrobial Products: Who Needs Them?” Alternatives: A Washington Toxics Coalition Fact Sheet. Seattle, Wash.: http://watoxics.org/files/antimicrobials.pdf.
Green Schools Initiative. n.d. “Green Schools Buying Guide.” www.greenschools.net/display.php?modin=54.
Green Schools Initiative. n.d. “Health and Environmental Benefits of Green Cleaning Products,” in “Cleaning for Asthma Safe Schools (CLASS): The Green Cleaning Toolkit.” www.greenschools.net/downloads/Green%20Cleaning%20Benefits%20112009.pdf.
Green Schools Initiative and Green Purchasing Institute. n.d. Use Safer Disinfectants and Disinfecting Practices,” www.greenschools.net/article.php?id=278.
Green Seal. 2011. “Green Seal Position on Its Standards for Antimicrobial Cleaning Products.” www.greenseal.org/Portals/0/Documents/Standards/Position%20Statements/Antimicrobial_Cleaning_Products_Position_Statement.pdf.
Healthy Schools Campaign. n.d. “Use Green Cleaning Products: When Certifications Aren’t Available,” The Quick and Easy Guide to Green Cleaning, 3rd Ed. http://healthyschoolscampaign.org/programs/gcs/guide/s2-no-certifications-products.html.
Hollender, Jeffrey. 2010. Planet Home: Conscious Choices for Cleaning and Greening the World You Care About Most. New York: Clarkson Potter/Publishers.
National Geographic. n.d. “Green Living: Nontoxic Cleaners.” http://greenliving.nationalgeographic.com/nontoxic-cleaners/.
National Association for the Education of Young Children. 2012. “Cleaning, Sanitizing, and Disinfecting Frequency Table.” www.naeyc.org/files/academy/file/Cleaning_and_Sanitation_Chart.pdf.
National Resource Center for Safety and Health in Child Care. 2011. “Selecting an Appropriate Sanitizer or Disinfectant” (Appendix J), Caring for Our Children: National Health and Safety Performance Standards, Guidelines for Early Care and Education Settings, 3rd Ed. http://nrckids.org/CFOC3/PDFVersion/PDF_Color/CFOC3_J.pdf.
Minimum Standards for Child-Care Centers. 2010. “What does Licensing mean when it refers to “sanitizing”? Sec. 746.3409. Austin: Texas Department of Family and Protective Services. www.dfps.state.tx.us/documents/Child_Care/Child_Care_Standards_and_Regulations/2012-03_746_Centers.pdf.
Rose, Bobbie. 2009. “Sanitize Safely and Effectively: Bleach and Alternatives in Child Care Programs,” Health & Safety Notes. Berkeley: University of California, San Francisco School of Nursing, California Childcare Health Program. www.ucsfchildcarehealth.org/pdfs/healthandsafety/SanitizeSafely_En0709.pdf.
Rose, Lynn and Carol Westinghouse. 2010. Cleaning for Healthier Schools—Infection Control Handbook. www.ct.gov/dph/lib/dph/environmental_health/eoha/pdf/cleaning_for_healthier_schools_final_2.4.11.pdf.
University of Washington, Department of Environmental and Occupational Health. November 2011. “Microfiber.” http://depts.washington.edu/envhlth/pdf/microfiber_fact_sheet.pdf.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. April 19, 2012. “Antibacterial Cleaner: What Is It?” www.epa.gov/kidshometour/products/disinf2.htm.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. March 16, 2012. “Design for the Environment: An EPA Partnership Program.” www.epa.gov/dfe/product_label_purch.html#purchasers.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. March 20, 2012. “Source Reduction Alternatives Around the Home. www.epa.gov/epawaste/wycd/catbook/alt.htm.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. November 2002. Using Microfiber Mops in Hospitals, www.epa.gov/region9/waste/p2/projects/hospital/mops.pdf.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. April 19, 2012. “What Are Antimicrobial Pesticides?” www.epa.gov/oppad001/ad_info.htm.
Weise, George. 2002. “Restroom Remedies: Keeping Odors Under Control.” Facilities.net. www.facilitiesnet.com/maintenanceoperations/article/Restroom-Remedies-Keeping-Odors-Under-Control--1733.