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Glass splashbacks and Covid-19

Woman in a mask because of Covid 19

The world as we know it has changed! Gone are the days when we could go about our daily business without really thinking too much about picking up a nasty virus from the things we touch.

Of course, for many people, there has always been an issue with hygiene and the way they behave when out and about. Some of the more health conscious amongst us have always avoided touching hand rails or door handles when out in public, but today, more and more of us are adopting a more careful approach to our daily interactions.

As soon as you touch a railing, a door handle or even the surface of a table, you could be picking up bacteria that was left behind by a previous visitor. The good news is that our immune systems have built up a resistance over time to many of these bacteria, thus we rarely suffer any ill effect. Covid-19 is new and we still do not fully understand just how dangerous it can be and just how easily it is passed from one person to another.

Surfaces contaminated with Covid-19

We can actually pick up the Covid-19 virus by touching surfaces contaminated with the new coronavirus, but it is only just starting to become clear as to how long the virus can survive outside the human body.

As Covid-19 has spread rapidly around the globe, our fear of surfaces has spread too. The more textured surfaces are more likely to harbour nasty bacteria and are far more troublesome to sanitise. The smoother the surface, the easier it will be to clean properly. Fortunately you cannot get much smoother than the glass that is used to manufacture our kitchen splashbacks.

In some areas that were affected by the new coronavirus, people in protective clothing like something out of a Sci-Fi film have been spraying disinfectant in shopping centres, parks and even some streets. Cleaning practices in offices, hospitals, shops and restaurants were stepped up until many of them were forced to close when the lockdown to slow the spread of the virus was announced.

Even the shops that remain open for essential groceries are insisting on social distancing measures, contactless card payments and members of staff in PPE being tasked with disinfecting the handles of shopping trolleys, baskets and even the hand held scanners between each use.

Glass splashbacks to fight against bacteria

One of the best ways to win the fight against virus bacteria is to ensure as many surfaces around your home or office are kept as clean as possible. This sounds obvious, but so many surfaces around us may look clean but are actually harbouring a lot of hidden bacteria. The main reason for this is that the texture of the surface is not smooth and will be made up of minute cracks and crevices. An apparently smooth kitchen worktop with wood effect or real wood is far from smooth when you consider the miniscule size of most bacteria. Ceramic tiles may be pretty smooth, but the grouting in between them is extremely rough and will attract a good deal of staining and bacteria. Glass is without doubt the smoothest surface you can have around your home, making it the easiest to keep hygienically clean.

Glass products from Splashbacks of Distinction

To make your life easier and help keep your surroundings clean and bacteria free, Splashbacks of Distinction have a range of toughened glass products that will not only look amazing, they will be a breeze to keep hygienically clean.

  • Printed Glass Kitchen Splashbacks.
  • Printed Glass Splashbacks with a High Definition Picture.
  • Glass Kitchen Worktops.
  • Bespoke Shower Screens and Enclosures.
  • Glass Balustrades.
  • Toughened Glass Shelves.
  • Bespoke Glass Mirrors.

So as well as the glass kitchen splashbacks, worktops for kitchens or bathrooms, glass shower screens, shelves and mirrors, the product that is really becoming popular now is the glass balustrades. These are often situated in high traffic areas of the home or workspace and therefore are touched by everyone using them. At times such as these, the last thing you want are surfaces with intricate spindles and grained finishes that will harbour harmful bacteria. The glass and metal used in our balustrades is ultra smooth and so easy to maintain. You will have no concerns about using a host of cleaning products on them and even steam will not harm the surfaces, the same cannot be said for the traditional alternatives.

The spread of Covid-19 on surfaces

Like so many other respiratory viruses, such as the more common influenza, Covid-19 can be spread in miniscule droplets released from the nose and mouth of an infected person when they cough or sneeze. One solitary cough can produce up to 3,000 droplets. These particles can land on other people, their clothing and the many surfaces around them, but some of the smaller particles can and do remain airborne.

Although there is a lot of misinformation circulating regarding the virus and how it spreads, we all need to play our part in preventing and slowing down the spread of this horrible virus. The more we can slow the spread down, the less chance we will have of overwhelming the NHS as they try to treat an increasing number of patients. The whole point of the lockdown is to keep as many people inside their homes, away from people outside their immediate families, for as much of the day as possible. By doing so, the virus will not be able to travel from one person to another.

There is also some evidence to suggest that the virus is also present in faecal matter, so anyone not washing their hands thoroughly after going to the toilet could easily contaminate anything they touch.

Faecal matter everywhere!

As revolting as it sounds, faecal matter is all around us. It will be found in varying amounts on any surface, with money, mobile phones and keyboards being some of the worst offenders.

Even surfaces around the home are host to a variety of bacteria and fecal matter, you don't even have to venture outdoors. This is why so many home owners are moving away from grained kitchen work surfaces and grouted tile splashbacks to a seamless smooth glass splashback. Even choosing glass for shower screens, shelves and table tops is proving popular and now more than ever.

Although the issue of faecal matter sounds pretty repulsive, the good news is that the risk of catching a disease from it in our everyday activities is pretty low. The best way to avoid getting ill is to ensure proper hygiene protocols are adhered to whenever possible.

To be brutally honest, any item that you touch on a regular basis is likely to have some level of faecal matter or bacteria present. One of the worst offenders is, wait for it, the toothbrush. No, this doesn't mean that a member of your family is upset with you and have used it to clean the toilet bowl as a revenge tactic, it is simply because of where a toothbrush is usually stored. When you consider that when a toilet is flushed, particularly when the seat and lid are in the raised position, a good deal of minute faecal particles are ejected into the atmosphere of the smallest room of the house and it has to settle somewhere. Another good reason to store toothbrushes inside a cabinet or in another room if possible. Also, a great reason to have a glass splashback and shower screen instead of a shower curtain and tiles, as they are much easier to clean afterwards.

Ways to limit the spread of bacteria and viruses in the home

Unfortunately bacteria is all around us, some are good and others are bad, but it's the bad ones that we need to be careful with and ensure surfaces are kept very clean. A glass splashback is by far the easiest surface to keep clean simply because it is so smooth, they leave no cracks for the nasty bacteria to hide. As long as you make proper hand washing a regular thing and keep all your surfaces clean, you will be giving your immune system a helping hand in keeping you healthy. From the moment of conception, your immune system is constantly working and updating all the things your body comes into contact with. As and when it detects a new threat, it begins to develop new antibodies to keep them from harming you.

So, do the following to keep as safe as you can be:

  • Wash your hands regularly. Soap and hot water is always best, but alcohol based hand sanitiser is a useful standby when needed. Wash your hands as soon as you return home from a public place or after getting off public transport. And always after using the toilet. Don't forget door handles and other surfaces you may have touched, as anything you just washed off your hands will still be on these areas off your home.
  • Change your kitchen sponges and cloths often, or use washable cloths in the kitchen. Better still, the paper rolls are far safer and are mandatory in food establishments. Make a special effort to keep surfaces and sinks clean. Employ as much glass in a kitchen as possible. Glass splashbacks, shelves and other surfaces are easier to keep hygienically clean than any other surface.
  • Make use of steam! Steam cleaners are superb for killing pathogens around the home and are safe to use on virtually everything, including carpet and curtains. Steam is a natural sanitiser that will also eliminate nasty odours when used correctly. They can save you a pile of money and help you to avoid a plethora of chemicals.
  • When working from home, or work, keep your desk clean by using anti bacterial sprays, wipes or paper towels. This is even more important for keyboards and phones, even more so if they are shared with others. The amount of bacteria that builds up on these two pieces of office equipment is frightening.
  • Even your car needs to be regularly wiped down on the inside. The gear stick, handles, stereo and other controls, not forgetting the steering wheel, basically anything that is touched by you or others.

The life span of Covid-19 on surfaces

We all know that regular hand washing and not touching ones face, mouth, nose or eyes is a good way to avoid Covid-19 from getting a grip, but what about all the different types of surfaces around us?

Let us assume that your entire house has been professionally sanitised so that there is no way any surface can have the live virus on it. You then take your daily exersise, walking around a field, lake or street. You maintain social distancing in line with the government advice, in fact you may not see another living soul, all will be well right? Wrong! The latest research has suggested that the virus can survive in the atmosphere for a considerable time, particularly if there is little or no air movement.

This research has shown that that the virus could survive in droplets for up to three hours after being coughed out into the air. Fine droplets between 1-5 micrometres in size, which is about thirty times smaller than the width of a human hair, can remain airborne for several hours in still air. So even if nobody was around on your walk, there is a possibility that any droplets from a previous walker could still be circulating in the air. You may breath them in, they may get into your eyes, but they may simply settle on your clothing. This is why it is very important to change and immediately wash outdoor clothing on returning home and take a shower, wiping any surfaces you touched before.

This may sound like overkill, but the amount of time this virus can remain active outside the body and the fact that it can kill makes being hyper cautious and hyper hygienic a worth while activity.

So exactly how long can Sars-CoV-2, which is the name of the virus that causes the disease Covid-19, survive outside the human body? Well, some research on other coronaviruses, including Sars and Mers, discovered that they can survive on metal, glass and plastic for up to nine days, unless they are properly disinfected. Some can even persist for up to twenty eight days in low temperatures.

Below is an indication of how long Sars-CoV-2 can last for on different surfaces.

  • Cardboard - up to 24 hours. So ensure any deliveries in boxes or cereal packets are disposed of properly. Transferring cereals into plastic containers with lids is a better way to keep them fresh anyway.
  • Plastic - 2-3 days.
  • Stainless steel - 2-3 days.
  • Copper - 4 hours

How to kill the virus on surfaces

The most important thing to know about coronavirus on surfaces is that they can easily be cleaned with common household disinfectants that will kill the virus. Washing textiles in washing machines is also effective. Having easy to clean surfaces that are smooth are even better as there is less chance of the virus lurking in hard to clean areas, a glass splashback, shower screen or glass shelves would make cleaning and disinfecting easier.

Research has shown that a related coronavirus that causes Sars could be killed by temperatures above 56 degrees celcius. That may be fine for surfaces or even textiles, just not the human body. The Department of Health recommends the temperature for bathing should be no higher than 43 degrees celcius, so it is vital that when bathing or showering, a foaming soup or shampoo is used as well as the water. Ultraviolet light can also be used to disinfect some surfaces, but is certainly not recommended for use on the skin.

Surfaces such as glass splashbacks, glass shower screens and glass shelves are so easy to clean. Disinfectant can be used or even steam will keep them clean and sparkling. Even before the start of this current pandemic, many customers were approaching us and asking about the hygiene benefits of glass in the home.

Will life ever be the same again after the pandemic?

When and if the Covid-19 virus has finally passed or becomes less of a threat, there will be a legacy left behind. Many people will lose their jobs and suffer severe financial difficulty, whereas others will lose loved ones, marriages and relationships will become strained and probably collapse under the pressure of the forced lockdown.

Research has also shown that many people have genuine fears about becoming infected with the virus, even more will worry about the social and economic impact of Covid-19 and fear an uncertain future where they believe serious poverty will become the norm. There may even be a backlash against citizens of other countries who people fear may be either to blame or carry the virus.

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is another factor to consider. A number of people who had been in hospital with Sars in 2003 later developed PTSD. A four year follow up study of seventy of the Sars survivors found that 44% of them had developed the disorder.

If you think about it, even before the pandemic hit, more people than ever were already working from home. Online shopping was making more than a fair share of high street stores go out of business, and more people were choosing to have food delivered, rather than going out to restaurants. In short, society was already starting to head in the direction we have had thrust upon us more recently. After the coronavirus has gone, we may simply carry on with some of the practices that we have had to adopt to stay safe during the pandemic.

Many will become far more aware of hygiene, both in themselves and their surroundings, they may become afraid of social interaction unlike before the virus, choosing to distance themselves from others. This is likely to cause a good deal of stress and isolation and mental health issues will increase in so many people.

Getting a positive from a negative

At least there is some light at the end of the tunnel. The environment has improved a great deal with mountain ranges visible from certain areas that haven't seen them for over thirty years, some major cities have seen air pollution fall as much as fifty percent. Although this trend is likely to be reversed when restrictions are lifted, it may make a significant number of people think harder about the environment.

There have been inspirational stories of people who volunteered to help others during the pandemic. This may even have the effect of giving them a new purpose and meaning in their lives. Others who were lonely before may have found better mechanisms of dealing with self isolation. They may have started using tablets to keep in touch with loved ones over face time and other apps, because they cannot physically pop over to see them in person.

We may even start to think of better ways to live our lives, look after each other and ourselves. The pandemic has forced many to take stock and that can be seen as a good thing. Things we have taken for granted, our family, our rights and freedoms and even the ready availability of toilet paper have been taken away, at least temporarily. Who knows? Maybe the pandemic could make us more tolerant with others and better human beings in the long run.

So until this horrible virus passes, remain at home as much as you can, wash your hands, clean all surfaces thoroughly and think of ways to occupy your time constructively. Another thing that is likely to change for the better is that we will all be more aware of better hygiene proactices and will want easy clean surfaces like glass splashbacks rather than alternatives that can trap bacteria. Above all, remember that like all viruses before, it will pass, life will go on and we will gradually get back to normal.

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We all get to a point when we suddenly become aware that our home or garden are looking quite dated. This often happens after we have been to a friends house who have opted for the light airy look and feel that glass furnishings can deliver. We then start to compare our property with theirs and yearn for a change for the better.

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Grout, tiles, alternatives and glass splashbacks

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Stay clean and healthy with a glass splashback

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Black, the last colour that springs to mind for a splashback, but why?

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Toughened glass instead of wooden spindles

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Glass mirrors

Mirros and their impact on interior design

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Glass partitions

Toughened glass partitions

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Glass shelving

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Bespoke glass shelves for a unique decor

We all have certain items that we want to put on display. It may be an assortment of nic nacs that we have collected over the years, our favourite books or an heirloom that was passed down from a previous generation. Whatever the display item is, the chances are that we will be displaying them on a shelf of some kind. The question is, what type of shelf do we choose to compliment not just the display item, but the rest of the interior of our home?

Read more about bespoke glass shelves for a unique decor...

Toughened Glass Shelves for the Home and Office

Shelves are an integral part of virtually every home and office up and down the country. They are a very functional way of making use of walls for storage when one may not want, or be able to use the floor.

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Glass in general

Natural light, mood and how glass can help

Today experts will agree that exposure to natural light during the day is strongly linked to energy, mood, sleep and an overall hightened quality of life. If we deprive ourselves of natural light, we often become down and moody, sometimes even starting to suffer from insomnia.

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Transform your home and office with glass

Glass is bright, clean, creates a light and airy space and although it has been around for centuries, it can make your living and working space look thoroughly modern.

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Toughened glass for every room in the home and beyond

Here at Splashbacks of Distinction we make the most out of glass by crafting it into so much more. We have all manner of shelves, kitchen and bathroom splashbacks, shower enclosures and screens and we even have glass balustrades to take the place of those traditional wooden spindles should the mood take you. But what else can glass really be used for?

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Toughened glass will transform your home or office

People have always had an intense interest in glass. Glass for the table, glass for the windows and even glass for some ornaments, but glass for a wider range of uses around the home or office, surely not!

The marked increase in interest of glass around the home seems to have started back in 1949, when the 'The Glass House' or 'Johnson house' was built in Connecticut, USA. It was designed by Philip Johnson as his own weekend residence and was made predominantly of toughened glass. It has been said that in a house of glass, the views of the landscape are its wallpaper.

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From glass kitchen splashbacks to bespoke mirrors

We all want our homes to have a unique appearance, because nobody wants their living space to be exactly the same as their friends and neighbours. Sadly this is easier said than done! Think about it, the majority of your friends and neighbours will buy their furniture from the local furniture store and the wallpaper, lamps and flooring are likely to be sourced from the same local DIY shop that you use. This is not to say they will choose exactly the same decor as you, but the chances of it happening are pretty good. So if you want something really different, think glass!

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From Stained Glass Windows to a Modern Splashback: Light and Glass in Perfect Harmony!

Glass has held a fascination for so many people over the centuries. No other material allows such a wide variety of products to be made that actually appear to change depending on the intensity of the light that shines upon it.

Read more about from stained glass windows to a modern splashback: light and glass in perfect harmony!...

Glass around the house or business with Splashbacks of Distinction

Glass really is an eyecatching medium, and at the same time it is a very functional material to be used as a splashback in the kitchen, bathroom or to highlight a display somewhere else in the home or office. Glass is naturally a very hygenic material as it is not porous so no bacteria can be left on its surface once properly cleaned. But why stop in the kitchen though, the bathroom is another part of the home that can easily be enhanced, come to think of it, anywhere you want colour, design and an easy clean surface can benefit from a toughened glass splashback.

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How toughened glass is made for our kitchen and bathroom splashbacks

Toughened glass, as its name would suggest, is glass material that has been made much tougher than ordinary glass. Toughened glass are much stronger varieties and are used in various constructions, these can be residential or commercial constructions. The actual strength of toughened glass is up to five times more than that of annealed glass, (see below for an explanation of the annealing process). Toughened glass is not only used for kitchen and bathroom splashbacks, it is also used to manufacture lots of glassware and these products are comparatively safer and offer far more durability.

Some people mistakenly believe that toughened glass is unbreakable, it may be very tough, but it can still be broken. Remember though, if products made of toughened glass are handled in the correct way, there is no reason why they shouldn't last for a lifetime.

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Beat the bacteria with a glass kitchen or bathroom splashback

If you wanted to eat your dinner from a clean surface, you might want to eat it in your bathroom. This may sound like a ridiculous thing to say when you consider what the smallest room in the house is used for, but read on!

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Why is glass so popular today more than ever?

Not all that long ago, people seemed to be going out of their way to get away from wood in and around their home, but instead of going the whole hog, they seemed to opt for wood effect materials, from worktops to flooring. Even shelves and furniture was either veneered or printed to make it look like wood.

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Modernise with glass splashbacks and balustrades

Do you want the modern touch that glass brings. Splashbacks of Distinction can advise you what glass additions to your home will not only be functional, look amazing, but what could actually compliment and even enhance your existing traditional furniture.

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Glass wall coverings

Glass splashbacks are the product that Splashbacks of Distinction know all about. We have transformed so many homes with our glass splashbacks and seem to get most of our new customers from referrals. All too often we see that people have bought one of the 'off the shelf' glass splashbacks and have never been happy with the quality or fit, that's where we come in.

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Having a high resolution image incorporated into your glass kitchen, bathroom or lifestyle splashback

Having a glass splashback fitted is a fantastic way of brightening up your kitchen, bathroom or living area. They are hygienically clean and come in a wonderfully varied range of textures and colour finishes. To add to the versatility of this product, Splashbacks of Distinction are now able to offer a fantastic new service to our customers, the incorporation of high resolution images into any glass splashback!

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A modern living space with Splashbacks of Distinction

We generally take glass for granted. We look out through it every day and unless there is a greasy fingerprint that sticks out like a sore thumb, we don't even seem to notice it. Glass is transparent and can be rather boring when it comes to your run of the mill windows.

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The RAL colour system

The Ral colour system, is a series of systems used to match certain colours in paint. The system is designed to help when you need to choose paint colours, it's effectively a swatch system.

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Further Information

If you would like to know more or are interested in a quote we would be happy to help. Phone us on 01920 830 084, email us at or fill in our enquiry form and we will be in touch as soon as possible.

Showroom: Unit 11, Broomhall Farm, Watton At Stone, Hertford SG14 2RN

t: 01920 830 084

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