Guide to Antimicrobial Home Hardware and Housewares

A wide range of antimicrobial home hardware and housewares may make the high-touch surfaces in your home safer from bacteria and viruses. Check out some of the latest options on the Canadian market.

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Cleaning door hardware - antimicrobial home hardware
Photo: Shutterstock

What to Know About Antimicrobial Hardware and Housewares

Antimicrobial is a buzzword of the pandemic. Simply defined, an antimicrobial product, like a disinfectant spray, or a surface, like a doorknob, can either kill microorganisms or inhibit their spread. Microorganisms include mold, fungus, bacteria, and viruses like SARS-CoV-2—the one that causes COVID-19.

During the pandemic, hardware and housewares manufacturers capitalized on consumer concerns by introducing a slew of products with antimicrobial properties. Some items, like real copper and bronze fixtures, are naturally antimicrobial, while others are treated with antimicrobial additives.

Antimicrobial products don’t take the place of proper personal hygiene and household cleaning practices — those are still essential. And antimicrobial surfaces can’t kill the coronavirus. But by creating a hostile environment where microorganisms disintegrate more rapidly, antimicrobials help protect your home and the people in it, That gives you another line of defense against COVID and other disease-causing organisms.

Check out some of the latest antimicrobial hardware and housewares on the market, with an explanation of how they inhibit the spread of microorganisms.

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Doorknob Kwikset Entry Door Knobs 740j 15 Smt Cp K4 64 1000
Photo: The Home Depot

Antimicrobial doorknobs

Because doorknobs are among the dirtiest places in a house, Kwikset has introduced a broad range of antimicrobial interior and exterior doorknobs and deadbolt sets. Look for those featuring Kwikset Microban SilverShield technology, which uses ionic silver to inhibit bacteria and virus growth. Microorganisms die more quickly on these surfaces, and the germ-killing properties don’t wash off or wear off the product surface.

Check out 11 tricks to avoiding germs that don’t work.

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Faucet 817nxud6p0l. Ac Sl1500
Photo: Amazon

Antimicrobial kitchen faucets

Antimicrobial technology was already gaining popularity in the home fixtures market, even before the pandemic made us more aware of how many surfaces we touch in a day. Delta Faucets featuring SpotShield Technology are treated with an antimicrobial finish. Bonus: They’re resistant to water spots.

Find out how to clean everything in your kitchen, according to Charles the Butler of CTV’s The Marilyn Denis Show.

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Antimicrobial Home Hardware Lee Valley Solid Brass Pull
Photo: Lee Valley Tools

Antimicrobial cabinet pulls

Copper alloy metals like bronze and brass are naturally antimicrobial. Studies have shown that the SARS-CoV-2 virus, which can live for days on plastic, stainless steel and cardboard surfaces, dies within four hours on copper alloys. Shop for solid brass cabinet hardware like these beauties from Lee Valley Tools, or look for brass or bronze-finish hardware made from zinc.

Check out more clever home improvement ideas under $200.

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Shower Head 81 2ytmzakl. Ac Sl1500
Photo: Amazon

Antimicrobial showerheads

While dirty hands aren’t likely to touch a showerhead, that warm, wet environment is prime territory for the growth of mold, mildew and bacteria. Look for a showerhead treated with antimicrobial surface. We like the looks of this AquaDance model, with six spray settings plus Microban technology.

Make sure you avoid these common hand washing mistakes.

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Antimicrobial Home Hardware Amazon Leviton Switchplate
Photo: Amazon

Antimicrobial light switches

If you’ve ever cleaned the light switches and wall plates in your home, you know how filthy they can get. Leviton has been making their antimicrobial switchplates since before antimicrobial was a buzzword. The brand also manufactures screwless snap-on plates and rocker switches, which provide fewer nooks and crannies for dirt and germs to hide.

These are the high-touch surfaces you should be disinfecting daily.

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Antimicrobial Home Hardware American Standard Spa Let
Photo: American Standard

Antimicrobial toilets

If you’re really serious about household germ warfare, go all out with a swanky toilet with a heated (yes!) antimicrobial seat. This deluxe SpaLet bidet toilet from American Standard has all the bells and whistles, including a touchless flush sensor, a built-in bidet with instant warm water and dryer, plus a nightlight.

Find out how to clean your bathroom in five minutes (or less).

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Cleaning Caddy 51a+j6dj9wl. Ac Sl1000
Photo: Amazon

Antimicrobial cleaning caddies

Filled with disinfectant sprays and cleaning solutions, your cleaning caddy should be one of the cleanest spots in your house, right? Well, that caddy gets wet. Throw a dirty cleaning rag or sponge in there and it can become a regular bacteria pit. Madesmart’s Carbon Collection Tote is made from ventilated, non-BPA plastic treated with antimicrobial properties. That keeps your cleaning caddy virtually germ-free.

Check out 13 bad cleaning habits you didn’t realize you had.

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Sink Rack 51fhe25h9el. Ac
Photo: Amazon

Antimicrobial sinkware

Your hand-washed dishes may be squeaky clean, but your dish drainer might be a microorganism super-spreader. Rubbermaid’s four-piece antimicrobial sinkware set features Microban technology in the rack and drain pad, so dishes sitting out to dry stay in a germ-free environment.

Psst—this is the most hygienic way to wash dishes.

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Shower Curtain 717mt Vgy+l. Ac Sl1500

Antimicrobial shower curtains

Like any wet, warm environment, your shower curtain can be a breeding ground for mold and mildew, which can cause allergies and respiratory problems. Keep the crud at bay with an antimicrobial shower curtain, like this one from LiBa, made from odourless PEVA plastic.

Find out more surprising ways your home could be making you sick.

The Family Handyman
Originally Published on The Family Handyman

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