What Kills Coronavirus

By now, we’ve all heard about the latest human coronavirus strain that is claiming lives in China, making its way through Europe and reaching North America, officially named: Covid-19. And whether you’re dealing with a mild coronavirus infection, or you want to be prepared in the event the Wuhan strain Covid-19 becomes a serious threat, this article will focus on the burning question: What Kills Human Coronavirus: The Strong, Deadly Strains like Covid-19

To skip our research, you can jump to the products table here:

Jump to Coronavirus Disinfectants.

The team at WhatKillsIt.com would like to preface this article by reminding our readers that the latest viral threat: Novel Coronavirus originating in Wuhan China, is an emerging virus

“Emerging virus” means it is new and without historical data.  Therefore, you will not be able to find a “legitimate” product label that says “Kills Novel Coronavirus” or “Kills Wuhan Coronavirus” as it is much too early for that statement to be verified.

As such, this article will teach you protocol for emerging threats and what to look for in a disinfectant in order to increase your chances of buying a product strong enough to kill the viral particles of an emerging threat.

Disinfecting for the “Common Cold” Human Coronavirus Vs. Deadly, Life-Threatening Strains like SARS, MERS and the New Strain from Wuhan China.

Hundreds, maybe thousands, of readily available disinfectants are labeled effective for their ability to kill “Human Coronavirus” but that doesn’t automatically mean the product will be capable of killing a deadly strain of human coronavirus, like the one originating from Wuhan China.

If that were the case, then all of the disinfectants labeled “kills human coronavirus” should have been able to kill the deadly SARS Coronavirus in 2002 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and the deadly MERS Coronavirus in 2012 (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome).

EPA registration data shows that most of these disinfectants were NOT subsequently registered for their ability to kill deadlier strains, SARS and/or MERS.

Product Label Kill List Samples

The following images show you what a product label might look like when capable of killing the basic, common cold type human coronavirus that is a part of our everyday lives:

Hundreds of products kill low level strains
does lysol kill coronavirus and what products will disinfect human coronavirus
Effective for killing common cold strains of Human Coronaviruses

Why The Above Disinfectants May Not Be Good Enough

Generally speaking, most Human Coronavirus strains are part of our everyday lives, mild, and present humans with nothing more than a chest cold or congestion. 

Many incorrectly assume that a product labeled: “kills human coronavirus” means it will be strong enough to kill a deadly, emerging strain like Covid-19. 

What to Look for Instead…

Disinfection Protocol on Emerging Viral Threats

Absent data, any attempt to kill (disinfect) viral particles of an emerging virus, the standard protocol is to use products proven to kill similar human coronaviruses.

A better choice for killing a life-threatening, emerging strain of Human Coronavirus like Covid-19, is to use EPA registered products that became registered to kill the deadly Human Coronaviruses: SARS in 2002 (Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome) and MERS in 2012 (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome). 

A product that is capable of killing the deadly SARS will say both:

  • Kills Human Coronavirus
  • Kills SARS Related Coronavirus

If it is capable of killing MERS, is should read:

  • Kills Human Coronavirus
  • Kills MERS Related Coronavirus

It will either say it on the label (if we’re lucky) or it will be listed on the company website or the EPA website if you enter the product’s EPA Registration Number.

Like these:

what product kills human coronavirus like wuhan
Example of a product that kills SARS related Coronavirus – Hard to Find Lysol Citrus Scent Antibacterial Kitchen Cleaner II – (must include the II on the end)
These Disinfectant Wipes are Strong enough to kill the deadly SARS associated Coronavirus (Office Depot HighMark Disinfecting Wipes)

Disinfectants Strong Enough to Kill MERS Coronavirus

This product, Oxivir TB (link to product) kills the basic human coronavirus AND just got EPA approval for its ability to kill the deadly MERS coronavirus (January 2020).

In the case of Oxivir TB, since the approval decision is so recent, most product labels will not be updated for some time. But both Oxivir TB spray and wipes are effective for killing MERS strain coronavirus. See EPA Website Snapshot below:

what disinfectants are strong enough to kill wuhan coronavirus
Oxivir TB Wipes (and spray) is capable of killing the deadly MERS coronavirus
Coronavirus Disinfectants

So What Should We Look For When Trying to Kill a New Deadly Coronavirus?

“Antibacterial” is not the phrase we’re looking for. We want “virucidals” or “anti-viral” kill claims. Then, we should look for SARS and MERS.

Coming up, we are going to look at disinfectants that are EPA registered for killing life threatening, SARS and/or MERS coronavirus, now that those 2 (once emerging viruses) have historical data.

How to Use these Tables: Disinfectants EPA Registered for Human Coronavirus, SARS or MERS

All of the products listed are capable of killing common cold Human Coronavirus, and so we took the time to investigate their entire kill list by entering their registration number into the EPA database. Only a handful have expanded their kill claim to include the deadlier strains MERS or SARS.

Where to Buy

If we found an online source for purchasing these disinfectants, we included our affiliate links to either amazon, home depot or walmart.

That’s the best we can do with an emerging threat as there simply is no data. We encourage you to read the updates provided on the CDC website (link) and WHO Website link (World Health Organization).

Let’s get into our researched products. We have 2 tables, one for Wipes and the other for SPRAYS.

Our article regarding Hand Sanitizers studies is linked at the end of this article.

Wipes That Kill Human Coronavirus

Kill Claim
Oxivir TB1 minuteNONE1 minute
Lysol Disinfecting2 minute2 minuteNONE
Disinfecting Wipes
10 Minutes10 MinutesNONE
CaviWipes1 minuteNONENONE
Isotex 701 minuteNONENONE
DisCide Ultra30 SecondsNONENONE
Rescue Wipes30 SecondsNONENONE

Spray Disinfectants that Kill Human Coronavirus

Kill Claim
Lysol Citrus Scent
Kitchen Cleaner II
2 Minutes2 MinutesNONE
Lysol DisinfectantSpray EPA#777-9930 Seconds30 SecondsNONE
Lysol DisinfectantMax Cover Mist
30 Seconds30 SecondsNONE
Clorox ProQuaternary AllPurpose Cleaner10 Minutes10 MinutesNONE
Clorox BroadSpectrumQuaternary2 Minutes2 MinutesNONE
Clorox Commercial
Solutions Disinfecting
30 Seconds10 MinutesNONE
Oxivir TB1 MinuteNONE1 Minute
Lysol PowerFoam BathroomCleaner5 Minutes5 MinutesNONE

More FAQ’s about Human Coronavirus, SARS or MERS

Does Lysol Kill Human Coronavirus, SARS or MERS

We have not been able to find a Lysol product rated for killing MERS Coronavirus, but we just verified through EPA database, 4 Lysol Products rated for their ability to kills SARS Coronavirus. They are linked in the two tables above. These may not have SARS written on the label, but they are registered for efficacy of SARS on EPA website.

These are Lysol Brand (SARS) Killing EPA Registration Numbers:

  • EPA Registration Number 777-99 – Aerosol Disinfecting Spray
  • EPA Registration Number 777-127 – Aerosol Disinfectant Max Cover Mist
  • EPA Registration Number 777-14 – Disinfectant Wipes
  • EPA Registration Number: 777-71 – Power Foam Bathroom Cleaner
  • EPA Registration No 777-91 Lysol Citrus Scent Antibacterial Kitchen Cleaner II: (it must include the II on the end)

Does Clorox Bleach Kill Human Coronavirus SARS or MERS?

Clorox has a superb informational brochure that charts what their products are capable of killing. Their bleach based products are NOT rated for killing SARS or MERS which means household laundry bleach is not rated for killing deadlier strains of coronavirus.

However, their Quaternary (ammonium) based products do have expanded kill capabilities. In fact, these products are capable of killing so many pathogens, that they cannot all fit on the bottle. In this case, the company lists all the pathogens on their website and so does the EPA.

These Clorox products are EPA registered for killing SARS and therefore, may be effective for killing a life-threatening Novel Coronavirus – Covid-19:

Pro-Quaternary Price Check

Broad Spectrum Price Check

What Else, Besides Bleach and Lysol Kills Coronavirus?

Oxivir TB – EPA Registration Number: 70627-56

Oxivir TB in both Spray and Wipe has kill claims for Human Coronavirus and more specifically: MERS (Middle Eastern Respiratory Syndrome) and therefore may be able to kill emerging Novel Coronavirus.

Click Either Picture for Price Check and Availability


Oxivir TB-Wipes


The CDC is updating it’s outbreak page on a daily basis. Here is a portion of their current message to the general public;

There is currently no vaccine to prevent 2019-nCoV infection. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available. (link to hand sanitizer article)
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Our Thoughts

If budget allows, pick one disinfectant rated for killing SARS and one that kills MERS. They don’t have to break the bank. Follow directions on the product, exactly as written. Right now, the only one rated for killing MERS is Oxivir TB Spray or Oxivir TB Wipes. As for SARS, you have a lot more options listed in the table above.

If budget is a concern and you can only afford one disinfectant product we’d follow the science. Currently, most of the science is saying that Novel Coronavirus from Wuhan (Covid-19) is very genetically similar to that of SARS. So a SARS killing disinfectant may be preferred.

Lysol Products listed above and Clorox Broad Spectrum Quaternary (link) are registered by the EPA for their ability to kills SARS and the prices are manageable.

Also, we found these SARS killing wipes: HighMark Disinfecting Wipes on the shelves of Office Max/Depot. Just keep in mind, wipes are convenient, but it’s not as easy to achieve “wet contact time” disinfection requirements.

If online retailers become out of stock you may luck out simply by visiting the cleaning aisle of your local supermarket, home improvement or office supply store and taking a moment to read labels. If you can find a product that kills SARS and or MERS, the product MAY be able to kill the emerging coronavirus from Wuhan China.

Emerging Threat Reminder

Remember, nothing is guaranteed to kill an emerging virus. Protocol is to use a disinfectant proven to kill similarly deadly strains.

There is a process in which the CDC (Center for Disease Control) allows approved, registered manufacturers to begin marketing claims that their product “should” be effective for killing newly named threats. The outlets of making these claims are usually limited to websites and customer service numbers. UPDATE Feb.11th, 2020: THIS IS NOW IN EFFECT

We will update this page as information on disinfection becomes available and of course our research continues.

See why we like 70% alcohol based hand sanitizers – Read our Article HERE

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