Helpful Hacks for a Clean Backpack
During the school year, kids’ backpacks are pure workhorses, constantly overstuffed with text books, pencil cases, binders, lunch, an extra hoody, and often dangling a pair of sneakers and a pool bag. Backpacks endure the grimy floors of the school bus and public transit; get kicked around on the school yard pavement; and dragged up and down the dirty school hallways. Should this make them a concern as kids head back to school amidst a pandemic? Experts tell us it’s unlikely, but to be safe, it’s wise to take a few precautions.
Stash It Daily
To avoid contamination, some health experts are recommending backpacks be left at the front door, back door, garage, or in the car, instead of being dragged into kitchens and bedrooms. Kids can remove whatever supplies they need to complete their homework, but leave their backpack in a separate area to protect the home and family members.
Spray It Weekly
At the end of the week, spray backpacks with a disinfectant like Lysol. This only takes a few minutes and will give you some peace of mind. Simply empty the contents and spray the inside, wipe and dry with a microfibre cloth. Repeat on the outside, making sure to wipe straps and zippers. To dry, place in a sunny spot. It’s believed that UV rays can help kill the coronaviruses on surfaces, so it’s an extra step worth taking.
Wash it Monthly
Most backpacks can be washed in the washing machine with mild detergent, but others need to be hand washed because of the material they’re made from. Check the care label before washing. If machine washable, try this handy pillowcase hack to protect the backpack and your washing machine. Simply put your child’s empty backpack inside an old pillowcase. Tie the pillowcase closed and wash on the gentle cycle. Backpacks have all kinds of straps, buckles, zippers, and other things that could potentially get caught in the moving parts of a washing machine. This method will keep everything safe and intact. Air dry or fan dry.