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What temperature kills bacteria? Find out how to get rid of germs after you fall ill

Get your clothes ready to wear after being ill by understanding what temperature kills bacteria.

When you are finally over a cold, the last thing you want is the germs coming back to make you ill again. So from understanding how long do germs live to what temperature kills bacteria this article will give you all the steps you need to get your clothes and bedding ready for use again.


How long do germs live on clothes?

Even if you are feeling better, the bacteria that causes a cold virus can still survive on your clothes and household surfaces for 24 hours to several days.
Does detergent kill bacteria?


As long as you combine a good quality detergent with a high temperature wash, a large percentage of the virus causing bacteria will be killed off of the fabrics you are washing. Pay particular attention to items such as:

  • Towels
  • Bedding
  • Clothes
  • Pyjamas

If you have a tumble dryer, it’s worth popping your clothing and bedding on high heat for around half an hour to kill off any bacteria that may have survived. Always check the care label to make sure the items can be tumble dried. If you don’t have a tumble dryer, or the items can’t be tumble dried, pop them outside to dry in the sun as UV rays are a natural disinfectant.


Does bleach kill bacteria?

Once you have made sure to clean your clothes and bedding, think about other places and surfaces that you may have been in contact with and now need a clean. These include:

  • Your kitchen
  • Your bathroom
  • Your car

For the surfaces in these areas bleach is the ideal product, as it is a highly effective disinfectant which will not only clean your home and car, but also kill any bacteria that could cause you to become ill again. Try Cif Multipurpose Ultrafast Spray with bleach, it gets rid of both dirt and germs in one go.


Do you need to clean anything else?

Once you have cleaned any regularly touched surfaces and fabrics, be sure to give a clean to other items such as:

  • Your toothbrush
  • TV controllers
  • Door handles
  • Light switches

For items like these a good antibacterial spray like Cif Power & Shine Antibacterial Multipurpose Spray will work wonders. This can be made by combining 1 cup of water with ½ a cup of white vinegar and shaking well. You can also add a few drops of essential oils to make it smell great.


Now that you know to use a good quality laundry detergent that kills bacteria when combined with a high heat wash cycle, and which areas of your home you need to clean; you can make sure that you are able to prevent the virus from coming back.


Key Steps

  • Use a laundry detergent that kills bacteria like Persil to get clothes and bedding germ-free and ready to use again. 
  • Take care when handling fabrics before they’re washed, and wash your hands after. 
  • Don’t forget to clean surfaces in your kitchen, bathroom and car.

Top Tip:

Although knowing what temperature kills bacteria in washing machine cycles is important, using a quality detergent like Persil will ensure you rid your clothes of germs.