COVID-19 has changed everything about the world, and the way you clean your personal floatation device is no different. Follow along for tips on how to clean your life jacket during the pandemic.


How to Clean Your Life Jacket


It is important to remember never to use bleach, dry clean, or a washing machine to clean your life jacket. Instead, use a cloth and soapy water to wash your life jacket, taking special care not to place the inflator underwater. Use clean water to rinse the life jacket, and then hang it to dry. Allow your life jacket to dry for 72 hours before using. If your life jacket is made of foam, follow the aforementioned instructions and feel free to submerge the jacket fully.


But What If I Need To Use It Before 72 Hours Have Passed?


If you need to use your life jacket before 72 hours have passed, remember that COVID-19 can live on surfaces for up to three days and even longer if the surface is porous. To clean, use a 60 percent to 90 percent solution of alcohol. Avoid bleach products, as they can ruin your life jacket. Remember that your life jacket’s hardware, such as zippers, hook fasteners, and buckles, presents a challenge when it comes to cleaning, as synthetic materials and metals may allow the virus to live longer than its 72-hour lifespan. Special attention should be paid to them while cleaning.


Make sure to use gloves while washing your life jacket, and afterward, throw them away and wash your hands thoroughly. Wash your life jacket in hot water, but not over 140 degrees Fahrenheit; a hotter temperature would kill COVID-19 faster, but it would also damage the life jacket. Heated air drying is recommended, again, no hotter than 140 degrees Fahrenheit to preserve the integrity of the life jacket.


Most importantly, always use your own life jacket. Sharing jackets, no matter the disinfectant method, heightens the chances of spreading the COVID-19 virus.


While the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly impacted the world, it is still possible to enjoy some water activities without worrying about the transmission of the virus. Just follow the above tips for safe, clean fun in the water.