Your Kid’s Backpack is Loaded with Germs: How to Disinfect It

The start of school signifies the beginning of cold and flu season. Prevent the spread of germs by disinfecting one of the dirtiest spots in the house – your child’s backpack.

Kid’s Backpack Germs

According to a study by Ketchum Analytics, backpacks carry more germs than the average toilet seat and up to 31 times more germs than a cellphone. 

Disinfecting reduces the spread of viruses and bacteria – but don’t worry, there’s no need to launder your child’s backpack every day. Instead, try these backpack disinfecting methods.

The Best Way to Kill Germs on a Backpack

The easiest way to kill germs on a backpack is to empty it and give it a quick spritz with a disinfecting spray. Most bags, like those made of nylon, are safe to spray. If you’re worried about damage to your backpack material, check the care instructions first.

To kill germs, cover all areas with the disinfecting mist, holding the bottle several inches from the bag to avoid saturation. Allow it to dry, and then return the items you took out.

You can also use disinfecting wipes to clean the interior and exterior of slick or waterproof bags. 

How to Launder a Backpack

Spraying a backpack with disinfectant is enough to keep germs at bay. Still, your kids’ bookbag will benefit from a more thorough, deep clean every few months.

Before putting a backpack in the washing machine, check the care instructions. Most backpacks are machine washable, but you’ll need to hand wash if you have a leather or suede bag.

Here’s the best way to launder a child’s bookbag:

  • Empty all items from the bag and shake the crumbs into the trash. If crumbs are excessive, vacuum them.
  • Use a stain remover to spot treat stains on the interior and exterior of the bag.
  • Leave all zippers open and place the backpack in a mesh laundry bag to prevent metal pieces, like zippers, from getting stuck in the washing machine.
  • Add a small amount of laundry detergent and run the washing machine on a delicate cycle using cold water.
  • Allow the bag to air dry.