Here are the current recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control. For information about handwashing, see the CDC’s Handwashing website.
Regarding headphones, here are the measures that we recommend to our customers, and use for our own rental operations and events:
- Sanitize headphones between each user, using wipes that are on the EPA's list of products effective for killing the COVID-19 virus. Make sure to wipe down every part of the headphone, taking extra care with the ear cushions and headband. Please be aware that wipes containing bleach or hydrogen peroxide may cause some discoloration of the cushions' leatherette. Replacement cushions are available from Sound Off. NOTE: We have seen evidence that the use of some brands of wipes lead to a breakdown of the polycarbonate plastic in the headphones. Please see this article for more information.
- Wear nitrile or other protective gloves when collecting users' headphones and sanitizing them.
- If you use a microphone with your setup, wipe it down between uses, paying special attention to head-worn units and belt packs. For head-worn microphones, switch the foam windscreen in between users. Microphones can be delicate instruments, so please check with the manufacturer for their recommendations about cleaning microphones so as not to void the warranty. Fitness Audio, Sennheiser, Shure, and others have published information on this.
We've had inquiries about UV light sterilization. While this technology should be completely safe for the headphones and other electronics, UV light exposure can have serious health effects on the user and those around them. If you decide to use UV light sterilization, take care and follow all safety precautions.
In general, we recommend cleaning the cushions in between each session, and for high intensity fitness classes, we recommend removing the cushions from the headphones to allow them to dry between sessions. Replacement cushions, as well as disposable headphone covers, are available from Sound Off.