Sanitizer Supplies Tips

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How do I keep my dishes clean and sanitized?

Dish Cleaning Tips

Keep your restaurant's dishes clean and sanitary using these essential tips:

  • When using chemical sanitizers, be sure the water is not over 120 degrees Fahrenheit, or the chemicals will evaporate.
  • Three-sink set-ups are required for effective clean-up. One sink for washing one for rinsing, one for soaking in sanitizing mixture.
  • Let dishes air dry or let them dry in the dishwasher's cycle. If you must hand-dry, do not use anything but clean rags to dry dishes.

   
What is the difference between cleaning and sanitizing?

Cleaning vs. Sanitizing

Knowing the difference between cleaning and sanitizing is a must in order to prepare your restaurant for health inspections. The basic idea is this: cleaning removes what you can see, and sanitizing removes what you can't. Cleaning dishes and equipment means washing off food particles, dirt, oils, and other visible materials. Sanitizing requires the use of specialized agents that attack and kill bacteria and germs. While detergents are readily available in any grocery store or drug store, you'll need to purchase sanitizers that are specific to your needs, such as dishwasher sanitizer and glassware sanitizing tablets, at restaurant supply stores.

   
When shoud I use foaming hand sanitizer?

Using Foaming Hand Sanitizers

If your hands are particularly sensitive, you may wish to try foaming hand sanitizer. Unlike the more common gel form of hand sanitizers, foam varieties can be used on cracked or dry hands without irritation or burning. Although many brands are alcohol-free, they claim to have just as much protection power as their alcohol-based cousins (up to 99.99% effective in killing germs and bacteria). Additional tip: Foaming hand sanitizers can also double in your First Aid kit as an antiseptic for cuts.

   
Does hand sanitizer work?

What to Look for in Hand Sanitizers

Does hand sanitizer work? The U. S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has determined that using hand sanitizer on unclean hands that have no visible grime on them is as effective as washing with soap and water. But how can you tell which -- or even if -- sanitizers are right for your restaurant? First, be sure to select a brand that contains at least 60% alcohol. It is the alcohol that provides the antiseptic quality to the sanitizer. Second, encourage staff servers to wash their hands whenever possible and reserve the use of the sanitizers for quick cleansing, such as between bringing plates of food to guests. Chefs and kitchen workers should stick to soap and water as much as possible.

   
How can I use food sanitizers in my restaurant?

How Pure is Your Food?

In 2005, Longmark Industries, LLC announced the launch of a restaurant-oriented program called "VeriPure(TM) Inside." The plan involves the use of a new FDA-approved, non-chemical food sanitizing process to minimize the occurrence of pathogens like E. coli. The program also provides restaurant customer education about this process that augments the safe food handling measures already taken. Check out your local municipality to see if you can get involved with the program. If you're worried about the cost, compare it with the cost of just one law suit that can be brought against your eating establishment should someone get ill from food served in your restaurant.

   

Lysol Fights Allergies

Lysol disinfecting products kill 99.9 percent of cold and flu germs on hard nonporous surfaces. Learn how Lysol disinfectant spray can help eliminate mold and mildew growth on surfaces in your restaurant that can cause allergic reactions. Go to lysol.com for more information.

   

Lysol Spray and Food

If you are worried about using disinfectant products on surfaces used for food preparation, lysol.com says don't fret. Just use the correct product.

When working in the kitchen and using disinfectant products around exposed food, it's best to always use caution and follow label products. Some products, including Lysol spray like Lysol Antibacterial Kitchen Cleaner, have been designed specifically for use in the kitchen. Rinse food preparation areas with water prior to re-use.

   

Differentiating Between Antibacterials and Disinfectants

The terms can get confusing when it comes to hand sanitizers. So here's a lesson in the difference between antibacterials and disinfectants, courtesy of lysol.com:

Antibacterial: a substance that has the ability to restrict the growth of, or kill, bacteria. This term is often used to describe the action of a disinfectant or hand soap.

Disinfectant: a substance destroying the growth of microorganisms. Disinfectant products are often effective against the full spectrum of germs, including bacteria, viruses and fungi.

   

Grits or No Grits?

You don't want to kiss these grits. That is, unless you want a mouthful of soap! But hand sanitizers with grits, or polymer beads, can help make your hands kissable if you wash with them. Decide if you'd like hand sanitizers with or without grits. Though some brands that contain grits have abrasion issues, others are for the most part abrasion free. Do your research before you buy so you're not wishing you said hold the grits on this order.

   
Do dishes have to be washed in hot water?

Cool Water Kills Germs

Did you know that you don't need hot water in order to wash dishes effectively? Cooler water will work just was well to kill germs on food plates, as long as a small amount of dish sanitizer containing ammonia is used. Washing in hot, soapy water will kill bacteria like E.coli, but if that is not available, the dish sanitizer-and-room-temperature-water method works just as well. When hand-washing, government recommendations state that restaurants should use water heated to at least 110 degrees Fahrenheit.

   

Keeping Germs Out of the Workplace

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), here are some ways you can stop the spread of germs in the workplace.

Take care to:

1. Cover your mouth and nose when you sneeze or cough

2. Clean your hands often, with soap and water or hand sanitizer

3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth

4. Stay home when you are sick and check with a health care provider when needed

5. Practice other good health habits

   
What kind of sanitizer wipes should I use?

Recommended Sanitizer Wipes

Kimberly-Clark Professional, which provides leadership in products that clean, care, and protect people in their work place or while they are away from home, can provide helpful guidance in your search for the perfect hand sanitizer or wipe. Go to kcprofessional.com for guidance. For the kitchen or dining area of your restaurant, Kimberly Clark recommends using Scott Megacartridge Napkins, Wypall Foodservice Towels, Kimcare Antibacterial Skin Cleansers or Kimtech Prep Surface Sanitizer Wipes.

   

The Benefits of Purell

You don't necessarily need a sink, faucet and soap to wash your hands. That's because Purell Instant Hand Sanitizer has made it easy to keep your hands clean anywhere.

Purell Instant Hand Sanitizer is an alcohol-based, instant hand sanitizer that kills 99.9 percent of most common germs. And no water is needed! So welcome it into your restaurant establishment.

   

Commercial Disinfectants

The National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID) estimates that 10,000 to 20,000 cases of infection from E. coli occur in the U.S. each year, according to webmd.com. Some experts claim protection against disease-causing organisms in kitchens and bathrooms is better with commercial disinfectants than with environmentally friendly products. According to research posted on webmd.com, commercial disinfectants tested killed 99.9 percent of bugs, including Salmonella, Escherichia coli (E. coli), and vancomycin-resistant Enterococci (VRE). In contrast, natural products eliminated only 90 percent of the bugs.

   

Kitchen Hygiene

Here are some tips on kitchen hygiene, courtesy of lysol.com:

1. Regularly disinfect any area that is often touched with hands, such as the fridge door, handles, faucets and doorknobs.

2. Use a trash can with a lid. Clean and disinfect it regularly.

3. Avoid contact between raw foods and cooked foods and use separate cutting boards for them.

4. Remove food debris from tables and then disinfect them before meals.

5. Change hand towels and tea cloths regularly.

6. Do not use tea towels to dry your hands.

   
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Patricia Walters-Fischer