Do Disinfectants Work in Cold Weather?

Do Disinfectants Work in Cold Weather?

You may have heard that some disinfectants do not work as well in cold weather. 

All chemicals are affected by temperature: "the rate of reaction doubles with every ten degree rise in temperature". 


When temperatures drop below 10°C, all disinfectants applied to buildings and livestock production equipment require longer contact times to achieve normal kill rate.


Whilst disinfectants the kill spectrum of disinfectant does not change at low temperatures, the kill speed is reduced because the rate of the chemical reaction which kills the microorganisms is slowed down.

The exception to this rule is the Halogen family of chemicals - iodine & chlorine disinfectants. Chlorine & Iodine are powerful oxidising compounds, so powerful in fact that even at zero degrees the kill remains almost instant. 


FAM® 30 for instance is an iodophor disinfectant which remains active at low temperatures, making it perfect for foot dipping.


Here are some top tips for effective foot dipping:

  • Pre-cleaning boots before dipping them
    • This extends the life of the disinfectant and increases the efficiency of boot dipping, as excess organic matter can cause disinfectant to destabilise quicker
  • Make sure you use lidded boot dips
    • This protects disinfectant from rainwater which can dilute it and UV rays which can destabilise it

Can frozen disinfectant be thawed and used?

Evans Vanodine disinfectants are freeze-thaw stable, meaning that if a a drum has completely frozen and solidified, it can be completely thawed and then rolled on a clean floor to re-mix any components which have separated. the product can then be used as normal without any adverse effects.

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