If you’ve had a chance to read the article for DIY disinfecting hand sanitizer, you already know the ratios needed to create an effective sanitizing solution and why the portions of ingredients are important (very important).
If you prefer to make your own cleaning products, or supplies are running low, you can easily make your own sanitizing wipes and disinfecting sprays.
Tip: don’t throw out your empty disinfecting wipe containers or spray bottles. Use them to store your own DIY solutions.
Full disclosure – we continue to use DIY wipes and spray throughout the day to spot treat routinely used surfaces but because we realized we were going through a lot of wipes and bottles of spray, we now use a 60 watt UVC bulb in the evening to disinfect entire rooms, as well as masks and other objects that aren’t as easy to sanitize with a wipe or a spray. Here’s a link to using UVC rays to disinfect if you are interested.
DIY Homemade Sanitizing Wipes
Note: Sanitizing wipes are intended for use on non-porous surfaces. The type of wipe to make is dependent on the surface which it is applied. For example, never use bleach on granite surfaces because its harshness can degrade the sealant. Bleach can also corrode finishes on metal surfaces, resulting in rust. For these surfaces, an alcohol-based disinfectant is preferable. But bleach is great for tubs, toilets, and any other non-porous, colorfast surfaces. When in doubt, test first.
What To Use For The Wipes
- Disposable shop towels
- Bounty Select-A-Size paper towels (these were rated highest for scrubbing power)
- Fabric Bar Mops/Shop Towels (can be washed and reused)
- Flushable Wipes/Baby Wipes (which are conveniently already in their own, individual containers; see recipe for special instructions)
Definitely keep your empty wipe containers and tubs. They are perfect for refilling with your own DIY wipes. But in a pinch, gallon-sized ziplock bags work fine too.
What To Use As a Sanitizing Solution
DIY Disinfecting Wipes Sanitizing Solution Recipe 1
This recipes uses Isopropyl alcohol as its active ingredient and can also be used as a hand wipe (in a pinch).
- If using 99% Isopropyl Alcohol (~65% strength)
- 2/3 cup 99% Isopropyl Alcohol
- 1/3 cup distilled water
- 1 drop food coloring
- If using 91% Isopropyl Alcohol (~68% strength)
- 3/4 cup 91% Isopropyl Alcohol
- 1/4 cup distilled water
- 1 drop food coloring
- If using 70% Isopropyl Alcohol (~61% strength)
- 3/4 cup + 1 TBSP 70% Isopropyl Alcohol
- 1 TBSP distilled water
- 1 drop food coloring
Directions: depending on what you choose for wipes (shop towels, paper or cloth towels) make enough solution to thoroughly saturate each towelette. They should be very damp but not necessarily dripping wet and should be lightly tinted from the food coloring (so that you know they are completely saturated). Store them in an airtight, sealed container (alcohol evaporates).
Note! Flushable wipes or baby wipes are already water-saturated. In order to get the necessary concentration of alcohol, use 91% or higher isopropyl alcohol with no water. Add a tiny drop of food coloring into the bottle of isopropyl alcohol, then start by pouring 2-4 ounces of isopropyl alcohol directly into the flushable wipe tub or pouch. After an hour or so, check to see if the wipes have absorbed the alcohol (they should be faintly tinted from the food coloring). Add more solution until the wipes are fully saturated.
Make sure you clearly label your tub, container or pouch so that everyone in your household knows it is an isopropyl disinfectant wipe. Definitely remove the original labeling off the containers and pouches. A pouch filled with alcohol wipes should not have the original baby wipes label on it.
DIY Disinfecting Wipes Sanitizing Solution Recipe 2
This recipes uses bleach as its active ingredient and the bleach to water ratio recommended by the CDC for disinfecting surfaces.
- 1/3 cup unscented household bleach
- 1 gallon water
Directions: depending on what you choose for wipes (shop towels, paper or cloth towels) make enough solution to thoroughly saturate each towelette. They should be very damp but not necessarily dripping wet. Because we can’t add food coloring to bleach to use as a saturation guide, you will need to ensure that your paper or fabric wipes are thoroughly saturated after letting them soak for 1 hour.
Make sure you clearly label your tub, container or pouch so that everyone in your household knows it is a bleach disinfectant wipe. Definitely remove the original labeling off the containers and pouches. A pouch filled with bleach wipes should not have the original baby wipes label on it.
DIY Homemade Disinfecting Surface Spray Recipes
No big surprise here, but the spray recipes are actually identical to the wipe recipes above. You would just pour them into a spray bottle and clearly label them so that everyone in your household will know what the bottles contain.