Tips for Sanitizing & Disinfecting Tech Devices

We’re sure by now you’ve seen the many tips circulating about washing your hands and disinfecting surfaces, including the popular infographic generator that turns your favorite songs into a hand washing poster. With our increased usage of mobile devices and laptops we wanted to share these helpful tips from our friends at Elo for ensuring you use the proper cleaning methods for your tech devices.


Cleaning your Touch Screen Device
Cleaning and disinfecting are two steps. Cleaning removes dirt, grease, dust and other contaminants. Disinfecting is a separate process that uses a chemical designed to destroy bacteria.

  1. To prepare for cleaning the touchscreen, power down the device (if possible), or ensure your on-screen software can tolerate false touches while you clean.
  2. Do not get liquids inside the unit. Do not spray the device directly. Instead, use wet wipes, a sprayed cloth or a dampened cloth with the excess moisture squeezed off.
  3. Select only non-abrasive cleaning wipes or cloths to avoid scratching touchscreens.
  4. Avoid highly concentrated alcohol (> 70%), non-diluted bleach or ammonia solutions, as these may cause discoloration.
  5. Wipe the surfaces with the appropriate wipes or cloths and approved cleaning products, and allow them to dry.

Disinfecting your Device

  1. To prepare for disinfecting the touchscreen, power down the device (if possible) or ensure your on-screen software can tolerate false touches while you clean.
  2. Dampen a new clean, non-abrasive cloth with a disinfectant chosen from the list below. Ensure excess liquid is squeezed from the cloth. You may also use recommended pre-dampened wipes.
  3. Read the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. Many manufacturers require the surface to remain wet for a few minutes, so continuous wiping might be required.
  4. Disinfect the surfaces by wiping them with the cloth or wipe, and allow the surface to dry.

US CDC-recommended disinfectant solutions safe for electronics

  • Household bleach solution (1/3 cup of bleach per gal. of water)
  • Isopropyl alcohol (≤ 70% alcohol)

More information from the CDC on disinfecting procedures for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) can be found here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/home/cleaning-disinfection.html

Clorox Disinfecting Wipes Reg. No. 5813-79
Clorox Healthcare Bleach Germicidal Wipes Reg. No. 67619-12
Clorox Commercial Solutions Hydrogen Peroxide Cleaner Disinfectant Wipes Reg. No. 67619-25
Lonza Disinfectant Wipes Reg. No. 6836-313
Lysol Brand Clean & Fresh Multi Surface Cleaner (20% cleaner solution to water ratio) Reg. No. 777-89
Purell Professional Surface Disinfectant Wipes Reg. No. 84150-1
Sani-Cloth Prime Germicidal Disposable Wipes Reg. No. 9480-12

More information from the EPA on recommended disinfectants for Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) can be found here: https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2

Do NOT use the following materials when cleaning/disinfecting your device

  • Isopropyl Alcohol at concentration > 70%
  • Methyl Alcohol or Ethyl Alcohol at concentration > 35%
  • Thinner or benzine
  • Strong alkali lyes
  • Strong solvents
  • Acids
  • Detergents with fluoride
  • Detergents with ammonia at concentration > 1.6%
  • Abrasive cleaners
  • Detergents with abrasives
  • Formula 409
  • Steel wool
  • Sponges with abrasives
  • Steel blades
  • Cloth with steel threads

Specific cleaning tips for Apple Devices

Apple products are made with a variety of materials, and each material might have specific cleaning requirements. To get started, here are some tips that apply to all products:

  • Use only a soft, lint-free cloth. Avoid abrasive cloths, towels, paper towels, or similar items. 
  • Avoid excessive wiping, which might cause damage. 
  • Unplug all external power sources, devices, and cables.
  • Keep liquids away from the product, unless otherwise noted for specific products.
  • Don’t get moisture into any openings.
  • Don’t use aerosol sprays, bleaches, or abrasives.
  • Don’t spray cleaners directly onto the item.

Is it OK to use a disinfectant on my Apple product? 
Using a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces. Don’t use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any opening, and don’t submerge your Apple product in any cleaning agents. Don’t use on fabric or leather surfaces.