What is meant by the term "soap error"?

Combining cationic disinfectants with cleaning agents that contain anionic soap surfactants leads to a neutralising effect. This means that disinfecting efficacy is greatly reduced or even completely lost.

This problem is caused by the cleaning agent’s anionic soap surfactants that neutralise the disinfectant’s cationic active ingredients. This efficacy suppression is called “soap error”.

In the event of having to use a cleaning agent before a disinfectant, check whether both of the products are compatible with each other. Remember that even a small soap residue has the potential of reducing the efficacy of the disinfectant that is subsequently applied to the same surface.

A compatibility test should be carried out if a cleaning agent is to be added directly to the disinfectant. For more information on product compatibility, please refer to the datasheet provided by manufacturers.

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The A-to-Z database provides information on each pathogen, the most common infections that it triggers, its main transmission paths and recommendations on disinfection. In the glossary, you will find explanations of infection control terms. Search now!

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