Chlorine dioxide gas is safe and effective. The decontamination process can go smoothly if you know what to expect before, during and after treatment. In general, larger areas take longer than smaller ones, although the size of areas that need to be sealed is also an important factor.
Like all disinfectants, chlorine dioxide gas (ClO2) is corrosive because it is an oxidant. However, its oxidation potential is half that of other regularly used disinfectants. This makes it safe to use around complicated equipment. To prevent rust, we recommend that unpainted ferrous materials be painted.
It’s not safe for people to be in an area while it’s being treated with chlorine dioxide gas. However, once the gas has been removed, you and your team can safely return. Ideally, we will have access to a single contact person within your organization who can assist with turning on air handling units and other equipment once the gas has been removed.
We recommend that you turn off the HVAC system so the area being treated is not pressurized. We also ask that you turn the lights off, as UV light will break down the chlorine dioxide and reduce its effectiveness.
Chlorine dioxide gas breaks down into simple salts and leaves so few residues that they are often not measurable. For these reasons, the FDA allows this agent to be used to sterilize contact lenses and various foods. Once we have decontaminated an area or piece of equipment, there is no need for you and your team to do any additional cleaning.