Hello, I'm not finding any discussion on this but I apologize if I have missed it. There are a lot of cleaning discussions but this is really about spraying coins with rubbing alcohol with the only motivation being avoiding COVID19. I suspect the virus lives on the surface of an envelope or coin for only a certain amount of time. The internet is full of opinions on this. I was wondering what does a spray of rubbing alcohol do to a coin and can it just be rinsed off with distilled water.
Trying to main some sense of wisdom without going nuts
Money is dirty. That includes banknotes as well as coins. Everybody handles money, and we hav no idea of the health of those before us. The possibility of Coronavirus makes them much more dangerous. If you are CRH'ing, unwrap all of the rolls and throw all of the coins into a bucket of soapy water for 10 minutes. Rinse them around in the soapy water, then turn them out onto drainage tray with a slight slope on it, in the sun.
The water soluble oils from which soap is made are composed of lipid fats and oils. These lipids attack all virus organisms and the virusus simply fall apart. That is why soap 'n water is more effective than alcohol hand sanitizer, which dries out quickly. Cheaper as well.
You can then very safely examine all of your coins in the way you always have done. No gloves needed.
Spraying coins with Alcohol could make them drunk. Then they would stagger and fall off a table and you'ld probably try to grab them and with bare hands. This would leave prints on the coins as well as the virus. Now you have coins infected with Alcoholism and a virus. Next you would have to submit them to a rehab facility where they would now also pick up other illnesses making them even more contagious. Next is taking them home and melting them down in a furnace since high heat can kill almost anything. Conclusion: Drink the Alcohol and leave the coins alone.
Actually I would recommend all CRH to stop at least until this pandemic is over and done with . Yes I realize there are some diehards out there that won't be able to do that . To feed your addiction for a month or two spend a little of that Stimulus money from the Government and buy some coins on E-bay or online dealers . Of cause after all your bills are paid .
As others have posted, they have actually done some research into how viable this particular virus is after being sprayed onto various surfaces. They're artificial tests, but it's the best we've got right now. The virus survived for the shortest time on copper, just 4 hours. I suspect the virus would last even less time on silver, with it's famed sterilization properties. Of course, the time between a cashier giving you a coin and you picking up the coin is going to be a lot shorter than 4 hours, which is why the whole planet is hastily going cashless right now. But collectable coins that have been mailed to you should be perfectly safe, as they will be passing through the mail/courier system for a lot longer than 4 hours.
The packaging, on the other hand, is a different story. The virus can last for several days on paper or cardboard packaging. Here in Australia we've had cases of airport baggage handlers coming down with the virus, so it's easily possible to catch it second-hand from a parcel, especially a parcel sent express. Just leaving it alone for a few days should do the trick. Letting it sit in the sun should hasten the sterilization process; UV light is bad for viruses. A UV-C lamp would be even better - it's what the banks are using to sterilize their banknotes.
Don't say "infinitely" when you mean "very"; otherwise, you'll have no word left when you want to talk about something really infinite. - C. S. Lewis