How long does COVID-19 stay in the air?

We know that the COVID-19 virus is passed between people through droplets from the nose or mouth, hence why we’re all social distancing and wearing face masks now. But these droplets can also land on the surfaces around us and end up potentially infecting people that then come into contact with these surfaces. And that’s why we’re advised not to touch things unnecessarily and to regularly wash and sanitise our hands.

But another question that people are asking is: can COVID-19 stay in the air around us? And if so, for how long?

According to scientific studies, the answer is yes. The COVID-19 virus is able to survive in air droplets for up to three hours. Which if you think about it, is nearly half of the working day, so quite a while. However, there is limited evidence to suggest that the virus is able to travel through the air. Any virus that survives in air droplets will most likely only be present in the area where an infected person released it initially. But the World Health Organisation hasn’t completely ruled out airborne transmission, it’s simply said it’s unlikely.

Yet, virus remaining in the air around us can be quite a problem if you’re indoors in a small, crowded and poorly ventilated space - with the likelihood of airborne transmission becoming much higher.

So, how to prevent any possible virus sticking around in the air?

This mainly applies to indoor settings, as having the virus present in the air outdoors isn’t really a problem. Nature will do its thing. But indoor spaces need to be well ventilated so that fresh air is always flowing in, and the virus doesn’t stay present in your space.

Opening up doors and windows is one way to keep a space well ventilated. However, this isn’t always possible in all indoor spaces.

And this is where air sterilisers come in. These devices use a technology which creates UV light, ozone, and negatively-charged ions.  These all exist in the environment already, so are safe, and are quite powerful methods of disinfection. They eliminate bacteria, viruses, mould, and can break down unwanted chemicals and smells.

They're ideal for indoor spaces that get a lot of people coming in and out, like bathrooms, and can really help in minimising risk and making sure your space is safe for staff or customers.

You can find out more about air sterilisers and how they work in our guide we put out recently.

Just to note: The fixed installation air sterilisers we currently sell on our website are only recommended for washrooms or other transient areas where people only spend a short period at a time.


Air sterilisers are great additions to spaces that may need that extra bit of cleaning, like your washrooms. They're easy to install and use, provide 24/7 cleaning support, reduce waste, and could save you on costs in the long-term.

For more information or for help in finding your ideal washroom product, please contact us on 0114 3540047, use our contact us page by clicking here or click to visit the website.

In the trade? Don't forget we can set you up with a trade account for your purchases.

We have wholesaler, contractor, public sector and charity discounts available, please don't hesitate to ask or find out more information by clicking here.

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