Does Fabuloso Kill Germs? Yay, or Nay?

When it comes to keeping your home clean and germ-free, having the right cleaning products in your arsenal can make all the difference.

One popular household cleaner that has been around for years is Fabuloso. This versatile cleaning solution comes in a variety of fragrances and is used in many homes to mop floors, scrub surfaces, and deodorize rooms.

But does using Fabuloso help get rid of germs and disinfect your home? That’s an important question many consumers have before stocking up on this cleaning staple.

In this article, we’ll explore the answer toDoes Fabuloso kill germs?” We’ll look at whether Fabuloso is an effective disinfectant and can help prevent the spread of bacteria and viruses in your house.

We’ll also provide tips on how to use Fabuloso properly for cleaning and disinfecting different areas like carpets, laundry, and more.

There are also important safety considerations when using Fabuloso, especially when mixing with other cleaning products like bleach or vinegar.

By the end, you’ll know the facts on how well Fabuloso kills germs and whether it should be part of your cleaning routine.

Is Fabuloso a Good Household Cleaner?

In my experience, Fabuloso is one of the better household cleaners you can use for a variety of surfaces around your home.

I’ve found it to work great at cleaning and deodorizing all different types of floors. A diluted Fabuloso solution easily lifts dirt, debris, and sticky messes off my kitchen tile, vinyl floors, and hardwood surfaces when mopping.

Fabuloso Lavender Fragrance Cleaner (Dr. Kim Townsel)

It leaves them looking shiny and residue-free.

Fabuloso also works wonderfully at cutting through soap scum, grease, and grime when cleaning the bathroom.

I like to use it to wipe down my sinks, shower, and tub. It removes buildup easily and leaves behind a nice, clean lavender scent.

I never have issues with streaks or film left behind on mirrors or chrome fixtures either when using Fabuloso.

In the kitchen, Fabuloso is also my go-to for tackling caked-on food, oily residue, and stains on countertops and appliances.

It does a great job at making my kitchen counters, stovetop, and stainless steel fridge sparkling clean.

The different Fabuloso scents help counteract kitchen odors as well, leaving a fresher smell behind.

Overall, I find Fabuloso to be highly effective at cleaning all the major rooms and surfaces in my home.

It’s affordable, readily available at most stores, and comes in scents I enjoy.

The versatility of Fabuloso makes it a staple cleaning product that I consistently keep stocked in my cleaning closet.

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Does Fabuloso Kill Germs?

Does Fabuloso Kill Germs

When cleaning your home, you want products that not only remove dirt and stains but also help kill harmful germs. Many people wonder if popular cleaners like Fabuloso are effective at killing bacteria and viruses when used for cleaning.

According to scientific testing, Fabuloso does not reliably kill or disinfect against germs on surfaces.

The main active ingredients in Fabuloso are detergents, fragrances, and colors. It does not contain the strong disinfecting agents needed to eliminate germs.

Independent lab testing has also shown Fabuloso to be ineffective at killing common household bacteria like salmonella and E. coli when used for cleaning.

Testing Fabuloso To See If It Disinfects My Home! (Field of Focus)

Without antimicrobial agents, Fabuloso cannot legally claim any disinfecting properties or make guarantees about killing germs.

It simply does not have EPA approval as a registered disinfectant.

While Fabuloso will get surfaces looking clean, its ability to actively destroy bacteria, viruses, and other microbes is very limited compared to EPA-approved disinfectants like Lysol.

For high-risk areas where killing germs is crucial, like kitchens and bathrooms, relying solely on Fabuloso would not be advisable.

Combining it with an EPA-registered disinfecting product would provide better protection against the spread of microbes when cleaning and sanitizing surfaces in your home.

So while a pleasant-smelling cleaner, Fabuloso falls short when it comes to effectively killing germs.

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Does Fabuloso Kill Mold?

Fabuloso products are not designed or approved to kill mold growth.

The detergents in Fabuloso can help remove some mold and mold stains by cleaning surfaces. However, Fabuloso does not contain the strong antimicrobial ingredients needed to actively destroy mold spores.

EPA-registered disinfectants like Lysol or mold-fighting cleaners containing bleach are more effective options for killing mold.

Using Fabuloso alone often allows mold to return quickly. To properly address mold, the source of moisture enabling it to grow also needs to be eliminated.

A combination approach of moisture control, and sometimes professional mold remediation is recommended for effective mold removal.

Can You Use Fabuloso on the Carpet?

Fabuloso can be safely used on most carpet types if diluted properly.

  • To use Fabuloso on carpets, mix 1⁄4 cup of concentrated Fabuloso with 1 gallon of warm water.
  • Test an inconspicuous area first and allow it to fully dry to check for any discoloration or damage.
  • Then, apply the diluted solution to stains and high-traffic areas using a damp cloth or carpet cleaner machine. Avoid excessive wetness.
Cleaning carpet using Fabuloso and Pine-Sol
When using Fabuloso on carpets, it's important not to soak the carpet padding underneath. 

Prolonged wetness can lead to mold and mildew growth in the pads. 

Fabuloso also contains fragrances that may attract pets to urinate on treated spots. Rinsing well after cleaning prevents residue buildup.

For heavy-duty carpet cleaning, a deeper cleaning carpet shampoo is usually more effective than Fabuloso alone.

But as an accessible spot cleaner, Fabuloso can freshen up carpets in moderation. Just take care to not oversaturate carpets and pads when using them.

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Can You Use Fabuloso in Laundry?

Fabuloso is formulated as a cleaning solution for household surfaces, not for laundry.

The company does not recommend using Fabuloso in washing machines or as a laundry detergent substitute.

Adding Fabuloso to wash loads is not necessary for cleaning clothes and could potentially cause issues.

Detergents like Tide are specially designed to lift dirt and stains from fabrics.

Fabuloso’s cleaning ingredients are more tailored to hard surfaces, not fabrics that need gentler treatment.

Putting Fabuloso in your washing machine could also damage parts over time. The fragrances and dyes in Fabuloso can leave behind a sticky residue on hoses, seals, drums, and other components that interact with water.

Fabuloso doesn’t contain fabric softeners or ingredients to protect clothes as many laundry detergents do.

While the fresh scents of Fabuloso products are appealing, adding them directly to wash loads is not recommended.

For freshening up laundry, dryer sheets or liquid fabric softener is a safer option.

When it comes to your clothes, trust laundry detergent over Fabuloso for cleaning and stain removal.

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What Can I Mix With Fabuloso To Disinfect?

Since Fabuloso itself does not contain disinfecting agents, there are some safe, natural products that can be mixed with Fabuloso to boost its germ-killing abilities.

There are a few options you can try.

What do you mix Fabuloso with?


  • The simplest way to dilute Fabuloso for a safer, cleaner solution is with water.
  • You can mix 1/8 cup of Fabuloso concentrate with 1 gallon of water.
  • This dilutes the Fabuloso to a ratio appropriate for disinfecting surfaces.
  • Always use cold water, as hot water can break down Fabuloso’s formula.


  • White distilled vinegar contains acetic acid that acts as a natural disinfectant.
  • Create a solution by adding 1 part white vinegar to 4 parts Fabuloso concentrate.
  • The vinegar boosts Fabuloso’s antibacterial properties for better disinfection compared to water alone.

Baking Soda

  • For a scrubbing boost, add 1/4 cup baking soda to 1 gallon of diluted Fabuloso.
  • The baking soda is a mild abrasive that can help remove stubborn gunk and stains.
  • This solution is also moderately better at disinfecting than Fabuloso with just water.

Essential Oils

  • Another option is adding a few tablespoons of pine oil cleaner or tea tree oil to Fabuloso.
  • These natural oils do have some antimicrobial properties, though the disinfecting ability will be relatively minor.
  • Only use 100% pure essential oils, not fragrance oils.

Isopropyl Alcohol

  • A 50/50 blend of isopropyl alcohol and Fabuloso concentrate can significantly improve disinfection.
  • Use this blend immediately rather than storing it.
  • Alcohol evaporates quickly and can damage certain surfaces.
Always pre-mix Fabuloso with any additions in a separate container before use. 

Never surpass the recommended concentrations. 

Combine in small batches that can be used up right away.
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Can You Mix Fabuloso And Bleach?

It is not recommended to mix Fabuloso directly with bleach or bleach-containing products.

Combining these two cleaners can create dangerous chemical reactions.

Bleach contains sodium hypochlorite, which reacts with the surfactants and fragrances in Fabuloso.

This reaction gives off potentially toxic chlorine gas vapors. Exposure to the chlorine gas released when bleach and Fabuloso are combined can irritate eyes, skin, and lungs.

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Additionally, mixing concentrated or undiluted bleach with full-strength Fabuloso can generate significant heat.

This rapid exothermic reaction could result in the cleaners boiling over or splattering.

To avoid toxic fumes and other risks, Fabuloso and bleach-based cleaners like Clorox should always be used separately.

Never premix them together in advance. 

If using them in the same cleaning session, fully rinse surfaces between Fabuloso and bleach applications to prevent any interaction. 

Always make sure the area is well-ventilated too.

While bleach does have disinfecting properties Fabuloso lacks, combining the two comes at a cost of seriously compromised safety.

For effective disinfection with these cleaners, stick to using them individually rather than attempting to mix them.

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How Long Does Fabuloso Take To Disinfect?

Since Fabuloso does not actually contain proven disinfecting agents, it cannot reliably disinfect surfaces even after extended contact time.

However, people still often use Fabuloso with the intent of disinfecting and may wonder how long it takes to sit on surfaces to work.

Fabuloso may require 10-30 minutes of contact time to reduce some bacteria levels when used for cleaning.

However, it cannot achieve true disinfection to EPA standards in any reasonable timeframe.

One study found that Fabuloso only reduced levels of E. coli bacteria by about 60% even after a 30-minute contact time.

By comparison, most EPA-registered disinfectants like Lysol require only 2-3 minutes of contact time to reduce pathogens by over 99% to meet the EPA disinfection threshold.

Because Fabuloso lacks true antimicrobial ingredients, it simply cannot measure up to these types of disinfectants in potency or speed.

While letting Fabuloso sit for 10+ minutes may provide a minor reduction in some bacteria, it cannot comprehensively disinfect or sanitize surfaces.

How Long Does Fabuloso Smell Last?

The pleasant scent of Fabuloso does linger after cleaning with it. But the smell tends to fade after a day or two.

On hard, non-porous surfaces like countertops, the Fabuloso fragrance usually lasts around 24-48 hours. The scent diminishes more quickly on exterior surfaces like garage floors.

On porous materials like unfinished wood, the Fabuloso smell may linger noticeably for 3-5 days. The fragrance compounds can soak into porous surfaces longer.

Proper ventilation, avoiding over-application, and mixing Fabuloso with water all help reduce scent persistence.

But in general, expect Fabuloso’s trademark fragrance to stick around for 1-2 days after cleaning.

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Is Fabuloso Safe To Smell?

Fabuloso products are known for their fragrant scents, ranging from spring fresh to ocean breeze.

However, there are some safety considerations regarding directly inhaling or smelling Fabuloso for prolonged periods.


According to Fabuloso’s safety data sheet, intentionally breathing in the vapors can irritate the lungs.

Fabuloso contains chemical fragrances that can cause headaches, coughing, and eye/nose/throat discomfort if inhaled in high concentrations.

This is especially true in small, poorly ventilated rooms.

Briefly smelling a recently Fabuloso-cleaned surface or getting a whiff of the scent during normal use is generally not hazardous.

However, the safety data sheet advises against purposefully inhaling or sniffing Fabuloso straight from the bottle. The scent compounds can be irritating in concentrated form.

It’s also wise to avoid keeping your head directly above surfaces during Fabuloso use, as the fumes can still cause nausea in some people when inhaled in excess.

Using Fabuloso in a well-ventilated area and allowing surfaces to completely dry also helps reduce concentrated vapors.

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Final Thoughts

As we’ve explored, Fabuloso has some pros and cons when it comes to killing germs.

On the plus side, it can reduce some bacteria through cleaning when used properly.

But Fabuloso lacks EPA-approved antimicrobial agents to comprehensively kill viruses, mold, and other pathogens.

For reliable disinfection, Fabuloso needs to be paired with stronger disinfecting products.

Combining Fabuloso with bleach as a DIY disinfectant may seem appealing but comes with risks.

Mixing these two Cleaners can generate toxic chlorine gas and should be avoided for safety. Using Fabuloso and bleach separately is best.

While Fabuloso may fall short as a standalone disinfectant, its cleaning abilities and pleasant scents still make it beneficial for household cleaning tasks.

Just be realistic about its limitations regarding killing germs.

When used safely and in combination with proven disinfecting products, Fabuloso can have an overall positive role in keeping your home’s surfaces clean.


Is Fabuloso a disinfectant?

No, Fabuloso is not registered as a disinfectant with the EPA.

Does Fabuloso kill germs and bacteria?

No, scientific testing shows Fabuloso does not reliably kill common germs and bacteria like salmonella, E. coli, and viruses when used for cleaning.

Can you mix Fabuloso and vinegar?

Yes, you can mix Fabuloso and vinegar to make a cleaning solution. White distilled vinegar can help boost Fabuloso’s antibacterial properties. Mix at a ratio of 1 part vinegar to 4 parts Fabuloso concentrate.

Does Fabuloso have ammonia?

No, Fabuloso does not contain ammonia. The active ingredients in Fabuloso are cleaning agents called surfactants, water, fragrances, and dyes. Ammonia is not listed on the product label or formulation.

Resources – (for further reading)

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention – Disinfection and Sterilization

Fabuloso – Frequently Asked Questions

U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (.gov) – Colgate-Palmolive Recalls Fabuloso Multi-Purpose Cleaners Due to Risk of Exposure to Bacteria

I'm Ernest M Noah, the founder of I have years of experience as an exterminator in Texas and Idaho, and I'm passionate about educating people on how to deal with pest problems effectively and safely.