Disinfect Confidently: Best Practices for Protecting Your Health and Your Equipment

Now more than ever, those of us who use two-way radios, mobile computers and tablets must keep them clean and sanitized to reduce or eliminate the spread of bacteria and germs. But what methods and products work best?  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has compiled a list of more than 350 products that meet its criteria for use against SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. We put some of them (and others) to the test.

For Panasonic Toughbook® Computers and Tablets:

In partnership with Panasonic, we rigorously tested common disinfectant solutions for usability on Toughbook mobile computers and tablets. Our goal was to identify solutions that would not compromise equipment performance. After all, what good is a sanitized tablet if it fails to work when you need it?

In each test, we wiped an area on the device with a liquid solution using pressure of 1 kg/cm2, and repeated it 10,000 times.

The verdict? Disinfectant wipes work best. With wipes, you can avoid prolonged exposure to chemicals that can cause oxidation and paint discoloration, and break down the rubber that seals the devices. If the wipe form of these disinfectants is used and the surface is dried soon after application, the computer will be protected for years to come.

See details of the products tested and the results by downloading this flyer.

For Motorola Two-Way Radios:

For two-way radios, body-worn cameras and accessories, we and Motorola encourage you to follow these best practices for the cleaning and disinfecting of equipment.

Start with a general cleaning.  Apply 0.5% detergent-water solution with a cloth, then use a stiff, non-metallic, short-bristled brush to work all loose dirt away from the device. Use a soft, absorbent, lintless cloth or tissue to remove the solution and dry the device.

Then, disinfect. Wipe down the devices with over-the-counter isopropyl alcohol (rubbing alcohol) with at least a 70% alcohol concentration. Do not apply the alcohol directly to the device. Instead, apply it to a cloth which can then be used to wipe down the device.  Do not use bleach, solvents or cleaning spray; certain chemicals and their vapors can have detrimental effects on plastics and metal platings.

For more information about cleaning and disinfecting two-way radios, download this flyer.