Disinfectant vs Sanitizer – Which One Do You Need?

Disinfectant vs Sanitizer

Our obsession with germs and viruses is at an all-time high currently, especially because of the pandemic affecting the entire world. Even in the absence of the pandemic, we ensure that our surroundings and surfaces are clean and do not become a breeding ground for germs in any way. But, what do you choose between disinfectant vs sanitizer?

Going to a supermarket, you’d often find yourself buying disinfectants and sanitizers interchangeably, assuming that both products would suit the same purpose and provide the result that you desire. Guess what? They are not the same. Yes! Disinfectants and Sanitizers are not the same. Let’s discuss which one out of these you should use and for what purpose.


Disinfectant vs Sanitizer

Did you know there is a constant debate of disinfectant vs sanitizer to determine which of the either is more effective than the other or whether they are both equally effective? Maybe not! Because when you go to the supermarket, you are told that both are equally effective and would do the same job in killing germs and bacteria.

Apparently, that’s not true because one out of the two is more effective in terms of killing germs and bacteria, and both of them cannot be used on all surfaces equivalently. Before diving into understanding which of the either kills more germs and bacteria, let’s understand the one basic commonality between sanitizers and disinfectants which is that both sanitizers and disinfectants help in eliminating germs and bacteria on several surfaces.

But, the purpose of sanitizers is to reduce the germs and the number of bacteria present at a surface, and hence, they are only able to kill a certain amount of germs on surfaces, not all. On the other hand, disinfectants are capable of completely killing all the germs and bacteria. This is one of the main differences between sanitizer and disinfectant and speaks a lot about the extent of bacteria-elimination that can be achieved by using either of them.

Another difference to be highlighted in the debate of Disinfectant vs Sanitizer is that sanitizers work quicker than disinfectants. While sanitizers may start killing the bacteria within a few seconds to a minute, disinfectants may take up to 10 minutes to start working and killing the germs.


Is Hand sanitizer ineffective?

Now that you have understood the differences between disinfectant vs sanitizer, you know that sanitizers simply reduce the number of germs on a certain surface, while disinfectants on the other hand kill about all of them. But what about hand sanitizers? You use hand sanitizers because most of them claim to ‘kill’ 99.9% germs.

The claim is actually correct. Hand sanitizers are termed wrongly because they are essentially disinfectants. The main component of hand sanitizers is alcohol which is also responsible for their claim of killing 99.9% germs and alcohol fall in the category of disinfectants. So, even though hand sanitizers are termed as sanitizers, they are disinfectants only and do the job of killing germs on your hands very well.

Also, disinfectants cannot be used on people. So, please do not use a disinfectant on your hands or other parts of the body.

Disinfect Door Knob


Disinfect vs Sanitize

When do you disinfect and when do you sanitize? There is a criterion to decide when to use which of these products while cleaning surfaces in your surroundings, which is to analyze whether you wish to use strong chemicals on a surface or not.

The surfaces and things that you would not want to come in contact with harsh chemicals should be sanitized and not disinfected. Such surfaces or things could include the toys of your children, your cooking tools, food packets, etc. Sanitizers that may be used for surfaces likely to come in contact with food, must include so within their description or their packaging.

But, surfaces where the infestation of germs may be higher, such as doorknobs, kitchen sinks, toilets or bathroom tools, disinfectants should be used as opposed to sanitizers because they provide better protection by killing all the germs.

For example, you may buy the Greenshield Microwave and Fridge wipes at www.glocery.in that are specially made for microwaves and refrigerators which require deep disinfection but should not be sprayed upon with excessively harsh disinfectants. Using wipes disinfects these surfaces gently while also removing dirt and grime.

You can also buy a disinfectant spray such as the Dettol Disinfectant Spray (Crisp Linen) or the Dettol Disinfectant Spray (Spring Waterfall)  which can be used to spray the product on different surfaces.


What about sterilization?

There is another aspect of confusion when it comes to killing bacteria, which is disinfect vs sterilize. Sterilization is different from disinfection because while disinfectants completely kill certain microorganisms, sterilants are effective in killing all microorganisms, no matter what type they are.

But, disinfectants are sold by several companies and can be easily found in the markets. Sterilants on the other hand are only sold by medical houses and are used for specific purposes in specific places such as the hospitals, for medical use. Hence, it is much easier to use disinfectants and they are also suitable enough for use at home and offices.


Disinfectants vs Sanitizers during Covid-19

Not that disinfecting is not necessary otherwise, the situation during Covid-19 is especially tough and we are constantly battling between choosing disinfectants vs sanitizers. While choosing between disinfectants and sanitizers, always consider the nature or type of surface that you are aiming to clean.

If you are cleaning surfaces like faucets, sinks, or high-contact surfaces like tables platforms or doorknobs that would hold many germs and bacteria, ensure that you use a disinfectant. But if you plan on wiping down food packets or your kid’s toys, a sanitizer may be a better choice.


High-quality disinfectants

Nobody wants to live amongst germs and bacteria that may eventually cause many health problems and infections. That is why we all strongly aim towards ensuring that we are able to eliminate and kill such germs from our surroundings by sanitizing or disinfecting. But, using the right products is as essential as the process of sanitizing and disinfecting itself.

It is fairly easy to find a huge variety of sanitizers in the market from multiple brands, in multiple fragrances, sizes, etc. and it is equally hard to find high-quality and reliable disinfectants that can be used to kill germs on surfaces. But fret not! www.glocery.in brings a huge variety of reliable and high-quality disinfectant products and sanitizers that come in different forms such as disinfectant sprays or disinfectant wipes, that too for different uses and surfaces.

The Duzzit Wood Floor Wipes help in disinfecting and refreshing the wood and laminate flooring which may get spoiled by the use of usual disinfectants. These wipes disinfect the wood floor surfaces while also protecting them, in literally one swipe. The Dettol Anti-Bacterial Surface Wipes are for generic use and can be used on multiple surfaces easily.



Disinfectant vs Sanitizer is a debate that you may or may not have known about. But, now you are aware of the several differences between each of these products and you can now make a more informed choice about using each of them on different surfaces. We strongly suggest buying disinfectant sprays or disinfectant wipes to keep door handles or bathroom surfaces clean which are commonly used by all and hold many germs and bacteria.

You may easily order disinfectants at Glocery.in from the comfort of your homes and have them delivered at your doorstep.