Difference Between Cleaning and Sanitizing (With Table)

Cleaning as well as sanitizing both requires the removal of germs. Both the process involves deep hygiene, and it clearly helps people to kill the germs and live in a peaceful environment. Both processes are essential to keep the environment clean. These processes aid in creating clean surroundings for the people to exist.

Cleaning vs Sanitizing

The difference between cleaning and sanitizing is that cleaning requires surface sanitization, such as surface hygiene is maintained by germ removal. Sanitizing is a cleaning process that involves sanitization by chemicals. Sanitization is more hygienic than mere cleaning. Sanitization is done to a standard health protocol provided by the health administration of a nation.

Cleaning is a process that involves the removal of dust and other debris associated with the floor or surface. Cleaning provides a germ-free environment. It is also widely practiced by people to remove surface-based germs. It is also essential to keep the environment free from any dirt.

Sanitizing is the removal or refusing of the germs associated with an object. It is done to a safe level with the hell of sanitizing agents that are available for use. This level of hygiene is provided by public health safety standards. Sanitizing is also used to reduce the number of bacteria and harmful germs.

Comparison Table Between Cleaning and Sanitizing

Parameters of ComparisonCleaningSanitizing
GermsRemoval of germs.Reduces the number of germs associated with an object.
StepsThis is the first step for a clean environment.Sanitizing is the second step involved in the cleaning process.
DefinitionIt is the process of the removal of germs, dust, and debris.Sanitizing is the process of reducing the number of germs on an object.
Removal factorsDirt, dust, and allergens are removed.It reduces bacterial accumulation.
ComplexityIt isn’t complex when compared to that of the sanitization process.It is complex when compared to that of cleaning.

What is Cleaning?

Cleaning is a step-by-step process that involves the process of making something clean and hygienic. It is an essential step that is required to be followed by everyone to achieve a clean environment. Cleaning usually involves a lot of steps, and it also differs with various objects and places. It is the complete removal of germs from the environment, and it is quite tedious. It differs from sanitization as it involves the standard protocols to remove dirt.

Cleaning, on the other hand, requires processes that involve the removal of dust and debris from the environment to maintain a hygienic surface. Cleaning is an essential task that requires to be practiced by everyone in order to have a safe and clean environment. Cleaning is an important task for everyone to follow. It requires cleaning, dust removal, and maintenance of the same through the long run.

Cleaning involves mild soap-based solutions to create the foam for the removal of bacteria and other germs associated with the surface, and this disinfectant will help in maintaining hygiene by significant removal of dust. Cleaning involves simple practices, including washing hands before and after each meal, dry cleaning the clothes, and trying to maintain a clean locality. Cleaning is an important task that should be followed by each and every person to maintain a clean household and environment.

What is Sanitizing?

Sanitizing is the process of reducing the number of germs associated with a product or object. Sanitizing is followed by a set of procedures that is being already set by the health ministry or aboard. Sanitization is done by chemicals such as seventy percent ethanol for dehydration of cell walls of any microbes that are present on the surface.

There are plenty of sanitizers that are available and are considered safe to use for individuals to sanitize their hands. This process of sanitization is practiced in order to maintain a clean environment and to control any possible diseases that can spread through contact with hands. Sanitization is used to remove the accumulation of any bacteria on a particular surface.

Sanitization methods are advised by the health ministry, and one has to sanitize according to the provided standard protocols. It is also at times complex when compared to that of the normal cleaning techniques. Sanitization would involve disinfectants and seventy percent ethanol or other chemicals like floor disinfectant to remove or reduce the cumulated bacteria on a surface.

Sanitization is required when someone steps out of their homes and returns. It is also essential to be done when someone recovered from illness. It is better to sanitize the belongings of the person in order to avoid any possible infection transmission.

Main Differences Between Cleaning and Sanitizing

  1. Cleaning involves the removal of germs, whereas sanitizing is the reduction of germs associated with a surface.
  2. Cleaning is usually the first step of the process, whereas sanitization is the second step of the cleaning process.
  3. Cleaning involves dust removal, whereas sanitization is the second step of the cleaning process.
  4. Clean is not complex when compared to sanitization, whereas sanitization is quite a complex process to follow.
  5. Cleaning involves a soap-based solution to create a foam-based surface, and then it is washed, whereas sanitization requires sanitizers that are commercially available for use.


Cleaning and sanitization are both required in order to maintain a clean and hygienic environment. Cleaning involves a basic step that would aid in the removal of dust and other debris associated with the surface. Whereas sanitization would involve a standard protocol to maintain a level of cleanliness scale.

Cleaning is considered simple, whereas sanitization requires a set of standard procedures to be executed. Hence, sanitization is a little more complex than cleaning. However, both processes have to be followed to achieve a safe and clean environment. Both processes are important and essential to be followed by everyone.


  1. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7149890/
  2. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7603432/
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