Checklist for Choosing Cleanroom Disinfectants

If you’re creating a disinfectant program for your cleanroom, be sure to check these six points before making a decision.

Disinfectant programs are vital to pharmaceutical and medical device manufacturers. Cleanrooms must not only be cleaned, but also disinfected to remain compliant. A program entails a disinfectant rotation as well as the disinfectants themselves. Here is a checklist to consider when choosing disinfectants.

  1. Know the efficacy level of your options. Whether using a disinfectant or a sporicidal agent, it needs to be effective against the specific microorganisms present in your facility.
  2. Know the contact times required to work. Each product will vary in the length of time it needs to make contact to kill microorganisms. For compliance, contact times less than 5 minutes is ideal. Anything longer than that will likely require re-wetting of the surface, which can increase chemical costs.
  3. Test one-step cleaners and disinfectants. One-step products are preferred because extra steps add chemical and labor costs to the process. The EPA requires that all one-step products be tested for efficacy. Some of these options are only effective on pre-cleaned surfaces, which negate the purpose of a one-step process.
  4. Be certain about material compatibility. In life science cleanrooms, stainless steel is an especially important issue. Most processing equipment is made of stainless steel. When bleach or other corrosive products are used frequently, pitting can result. Pits harbor harmful microorganisms like bacteria, resulting in product contamination.
  5. Know whether residue is left behind. Residues can be left behind when using antimicrobial agents. These can lead to product contamination and stainless steel corrosion.
  6. Decide on a concentrate or ready-to-use formulas. Concentrates can compromise safety and quality control. Handling and pouring highly acidic and caustic solutions is a delicate process. Consider all costs involved when choosing between these two options.

Choosing the right disinfectant the first time will reduce significant costs and headaches, so take the time to do your research. If you have questions about cleanroom validation, certification, or construction, contact Gerbig Engineering Company. We have been in the cleanroom business for 30 years. Call us at 888-628-0056 or email