©2018 Mahoning Valley Water Inc.  Sanitizing Your Cooler      As with any appliance that comes into contact with food or water, your cooler should be cleaned and maintained regularly to ensure safe and optimum performance,  Microbes are an ever present fact of life.  They are present throughout your home and especially in the kitchen.  Regular cleaning and sanitizing are effective in controlling their growth.  You can apply the tips below to your refrigerator as well as your cooler.      At Mahoning Valley Water, we use a 50 parts per million solution of chlorine for sanitation.  You can mix this solution at home by adding 3/4 teaspoon of common household bleach (5.25% sodium hypochlorite) to one gallon of warm water.  Use only regular bleach.  DO NOT use any of the scented varieties of bleach or use any other types of cleaners such as Mr. Clean or PineSol.  Baking soda should also never be used to sanitize as it has no disinfecting ability - only deodorizing. Cooler Surfaces      Cleaning cooler surfaces is essential because microbes are contained in biofilms which are a thin coating (or film) of polysaccharides that exude or release the microbes.  Wiping the coolers' surface with a clean paper towel or cloth prior to sanitizing is important to remove the biofilms.  Place some of the chlorine solution in a spray bottle and spray a fine mist on the cooler's surfaces and faucets and allow them to air dry.  You may also use a very mild detergent to clean hand prints or dirt spots on the outside surfaces of the cooler before sanitizing. Reservoir      Fill the reservoir with the chlorine solution and allow it to soak for 30 minutes.  Drain the reservoir through the faucets and fill with plain water and drain out again.  You may need to flush with plain water 2 or 3 times to remove all of the chlorine. MAHONING VALLEY WATER