You need antibacterial disinfectant spray, but it’s hard to come by.

Ridiculous times call for LOGICAL measures. 

We can make quality effective antibacterial disinfectant spray from things we already have in our own home. Or at the least things that are WAAAAY easier to get a hold of than a pre-made store bought brand. 

In these times I’m trying to accomplish a simple to make spray that I can make a good amount of that ALSO follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for killing bacteria that can cause all types of infections, but most importantly COVID19. 

You may be asking, Chauncey (that’s my name- hi!), why would I need to go through the trouble of making my own antibacterial disinfectant spray at home when I can easily purchase it from the store. 

Then again, you probably aren’t saying that because you know better. You’ve already done what I did (looking all over for spray to purchase), and have realized that antibacterial disinfectant spray is hard to come by these days.

Let me rephrase that: Antibacterial disinfectant spray is hard to come by without it being extremely OVERPRICED. Or rather, you spend a lot, and don’t get nearly the value you want. 

The current global pandemic not only has people hoarding toilet paper (for some reason), but many are stocking up on the essentials (all at the same time) when it comes to combating bacteria that can lead to flu and viruses, like the recent coronavirus, better known as COVID19. 

It’s slim pickings out there right now. 

Doesn’t mean we have to be desperate. 

It just means we have to be SMART and SELF-RELIANT

I’m not against buying things. I’m FOR buying things that can get you more VALUE for what you’ve spent. 

You’ve probably seen a lot of information out there on Do It Yourself (DIY) antibacterial sprays already. The truth is some are more effective than others depending on what you’re trying to accomplish. Especially when it comes to CDC guidelines. 

Not to despair though, I went through the trouble of reading a good amount of info out there so you don’t have to. I put what I’ve learned in this one post so you can be a bit safer and a little less frustrated (like I was). 

So let’s get to it. 

You don’t even need a full body suit for this.

The first thing to know is that currently there is a list by the CDC of EPA-registered disinfectants. What this means is that there is a list of chemicals that can be used in order to fight against the major viral bad guy of the moment SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

Now, if you clicked on the link it can be a bit confusing. Especially since a good amount of what is listed may not be readily available to you. 

What I want to focus on in this post are THREE different DIY sprays you can use that have ingredients from that list that are most likely already in your home. And if they aren’t in your home then they’re usually not that hard to come by in bulk. 

The three we’re focusing on: 

BLEACH 

RUBBING ALCOHOL (isopropyl alcohol)

HYDROGEN PEROXIDE  

If you wash clothes then you probably have bleach. And rubbing alcohol is good to have around the house for a variety of hygienic reasons, making an effective antibacterial disinfectant spray being one of them. Hydrogen Peroxide is the ULTIMATE must have when it comes to cleaning cuts, soothing a sore throat, disinfecting your mouth, and whitening your teeth. 

Instructions for BLEACH based spray 

What you’ll need: 

BLEACH  – 5 tablespoons (⅓ cup)

WATER – 1 gallon

(Not complicated at all) 

Measurement alternative: For a smaller amount you can use 4 teaspoons of bleach with 1 quart of water. 

Steps: 

  1. Get some gloves because bleach CAN harm the skin. 
  2. Get a spray bottle (preferably a glass spray bottle- more durable) or any container that won’t be confused for drinking water by anyone in your home (or yourself later in a moment of WTF) 
  3. Mix the ingredients in your container of choice 

IMPORTANT NOTE: This disinfectant spray is on a TIMER. That means that after 24 HOURS it loses its potency. Bleach is SUPER powerful, so I’d recommend using this one if you have some major cleaning to do, or may be sharing a home with someone who is currently sick. 

SURFACES NOT TO USE ON: Bleach is a HARSH cleaner. It’s advised not to use bleach on copper surfaces and stainless steel appliances. 

How to use: 

CLEAN the area you intend on disinfecting FIRST. This can be done with good ol’ soap and water or other cleaning supplies you have around the house. When surfaces are clean it allows for the disinfectant to work better because it doesn’t have to cut through dirt and grime along with trying to kill bad bacteria. Also cleaning surfaces might not kill germs outright, but it does reduce the number of them. 

Let the surface dry then apply the bleach solution for at least one minute as recommended by the CDC. Then wipe away. 

Instructions for RUBBING ALCOHOL based spray 

What you’ll need: 

Rubbing Alcohol (70% solution or higher)- 2 cups 

Water- 1 cup

Measurement alternative: Basically whatever amount of rubbing alcohol you use, use half of that amount for the water. 

Steps: 

  1. Get a container to hold the ingredients (preferably a glass bottle- more durable) 
  2. Mix the ingredients in the container of your choice. 

How to use: 

CLEAN the area you intend on disinfecting FIRST with your cleaning agent of choice. 

Let the surface dry then apply the solution. If you spray a lot of the alcohol on the surface you may want to wipe it away after 1-5 minutes of contact, but you can also let it dry.  

SURFACES NOT TO USE ON: Avoid using rubbing alcohol on shellacked, painted, lacquered, or varnished surfaces. This includes treated wood. 

Instructions for HYDROGEN PEROXIDE based spray

What you’ll need: 

3% bottle of Hydrogen Peroxide (if it is a higher concentrate you may want to dilute it with water) 

Steps: 

  1. KEEP the original brown bottle the hydrogen peroxide comes in! This is important because in order for hydrogen peroxide to keep its potency it needs to stay in a dark bottle.
  2. Pour the amount you think you’ll need at the moment of cleaning into a spray bottle. 
  3. Use the amount you poured in the spray bottle within 30 minutes. 

IMPORTANT NOTE: SHELF LIFE of hydrogen peroxide is 6 months after opening the bottle. After 6 months it loses its potency. If the bottle is unopened it can last for up to 3 years. 

How to use: 

CLEAN the area you intend on disinfecting FIRST with your cleaning agent of choice. 

Let the surface dry then apply the solution. Hydrogen peroxide doesn’t need to be wiped away since it decomposes into oxygen and water (SCIENCE yay!). 

IMPORTANT NOTE: Some things DO NOT MIX 

These three ingredients are pretty potent on their own. This means you don’t want to mix other chemicals with them unless you know what you’re doing. 

NEVER mix bleach with ammonia, vinegar or any other solution. This is why you want to make sure whatever container you use for that solution is thoroughly clean. 

NEVER mix hydrogen peroxide and vinegar. That mixture creates peracetic acid. This can be super harmful to the skin, eyes, throat, nose, and lungs. 

NEVER mix rubbing alcohol with bleach. Once again, bad combo and not good for those around it. 

Where you’ll want to use these sprays: 

HIGH TOUCH AREAS. That means door knobs, counter tops, bathroom surfaces, etc. Pretty much everywhere that hands, butts, and skin touch in your home. 

Be aware that some chemicals are harsher than others. Bleach is REALLY harsh. My go to has been the hydrogen peroxide spray since it feels the most straightforward to me, very cheap to buy bottles of it, and it breaks down on it’s own. 

Honorable mention antibacterial spray: 

VINEGAR 

Now, to be clear, vinegar is NOT listed by the CDC as being a good agent to fight against the current big bad virus COVID19. BUT it is an effective antibacterial spray for a good amount of everything else. 

It also makes things smell like salt and vinegar chips which is my favorite snack! 

Ingredients needed: 

White Vinegar – ½ cup

Tea tree oil – 15 droplets

Water – 2 cups

Instructions: Mix all of the ingredients in a glass spray bottle (preferred for durability) and you’re good to go. 

How to use 

Once again, CLEAN the surface you’re planning on disinfecting first. Makes it easier for your antibacterial spray to do it’s thing. 

Then spray this solution and let it dry. 

In conclusion there is a lot of information out there, but I think these three sprays (with an honorable mention) are going to be the EASIEST and most accessible solutions for anyone, like me, wanting a simple DIY antibacterial disinfectant spray.  

What are you most likely to use?