The Dirtiest Places in Your Home

This year, we have all been a little more concerned about cleanliness due to the outbreak of COVID-19. Rightfully so since the Society for General Microbiology reports that some bacteria divide as quickly as within 20 minutes when the conditions are right!

According to a 2016 study of the most contaminated objects in the home, the average household contains over 340 different bacteria! Yuck! Some of these bacteria include staph, mold, yeast, salmonella, E. coli, fecal matter and of course, viruses such as SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). 

So, where are all these nasty germs lingering? Here are 8 places that are typically the dirtiest in your home:

High-touch surfaces 

Many would assume that the bathroom doorknob would be the dirtiest frequently touched item. However,  NSF reported that the following had higher amounts of bacteria:

refrigerator handles

bathroom light switches

stove knobs

microwave handles


Due to the moisture, the bathroom is a perfect breeding ground for germs! Areas to pay attention to include:


shower tub

floor area around the toilet



bath towels

Makeup bags

The crevices of makeup bags and the bristles of makeup brushes provide an excellent home for germs, especially if you take these items out of the house. Germs living on makeup applicators may cause eye and skin infections. 

The kitchen

The NFS found that food prep and storage areas contain more bacteria and fecal matter than any other place in our homes! Common items storing germs and fecal matter include dish rags and sponges. In fact, dish sponges and rags are typically dirtier than bathroom faucet handles.

Other kitchen items that ranked high on the “dirty list” include:

kitchen sink and countertops

coffee makers


cutting boards


Pets are frequent carriers of bacteria and germs, especially those that go in and out. Pet items that you should be most concerned about include pet bowls, toys, and beds. 


Left in a moist machine, germs can flourish in your laundry. To eliminate the possibility, transfer clothes to the dryer immediately upon washing. If using a public laundry facility, use a disinfectant wipe in the machines before use. Use hot water whenever possible to most effectively remove germs from clothes. 

Items you frequently carry with you 

NSF found yeast, mold, and fecal contamination most often on these items out of 22 surveyed: 

the bottom of purses

wallet and money

lunch boxes

cell phones


Home office and living room

Most frequent home and office items that contained yeast, mold, and other germs include computer keyboards, remote controls, tablets, and phones. Carpet may also hold up to eight times its weight in dust and dirt, dirtier than most streets

Tips for living a cleaner lifestyle 

Keep these items around and use them frequently, especially keeping the surfaces and items mentioned in mind:

bleach and water

soap and water

hand sanitizers (at least 60 percent ethanol)

disinfecting wipes (at least 60 percent ethanol or 70 percent isopropanol)

Stop the spread of bacteria by

Coughing or sneezing into a tissue or your elbow, not your hand.

Washing your hands after using the bathroom, before and after eating and before cooking.

Not wearing your shoes in your home.

Frequently changing towels and sponges. 

Zapping wet sponges in the microwave to remove germs. 

Washing pets paws upon entering your home and bathing them, their bedding, and toys frequently. 

Cleaning animal bowls frequently. 

How A-Team Carpet Clean can help 

We are proud to help you live a cleaner, healthier life! If you are ready to give the dirtiest places in your home a thorough cleaning, we are often able to go above and beyond with an individual can do when it comes to disinfecting. Contact us today to learn more about carpet cleaning, tile and grout cleaning, and disinfectant services.