Solvent Replacement: What is a Safe Parts Washer Solvent?

When we think of a “safe” parts washer solvent, we often conceive of the solvent regarding its safety for human use, particularly use by workers who apply the solvent in industrial settings. However, while human safety should be a primary concern when choosing a parts washing solvent, there are three others areas of concern that quantify safety in additional ways; namely, the impact of the solvent concerning business productivity, the environment, and the law.

  1. Business Productivity

The impact of a parts washer solvent on workers’ health is inextricably tied to business productivity in an industrial environment where manpower is crucial for work processes. Many solvents that emit hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) are scientifically proven to cause negative short-term and long-term health effects, which take employees off of the work floor — if only temporarily — and complicate maintaining business productivity, much less increasing it.

High-level personal protective equipment (PPE) and special air filtration systems can help mitigate the risk. But purchasing and maintaining these resources can be quite costly in itself. Implementing a safe parts washer solvent that requires low-level PPE — or no PPE, as the case may be — and doesn’t emit hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) that are found on the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) list of banned and regulated chemicals is the preferred solution.

  1. Environmental Impact

A truly safe parts washer solvent is also one that doesn’t expose companies and organizations to legal liabilities for violating emissions caps for reportable chemicals. Some users find themselves in a catch-22 situation with the washer solvent they use: The solvent works perfectly for the cleaning operation, but it can’t be used insufficient quantities without incurring fines. The solution is bad news for the environment and, by extension, bad for company finances.

  1. Legal Implications

Incurring EPA enforced fines for emissions violations is one way that chemically unsafe parts cleaner legally jeopardizes the financial well-being of the end user. A second way that the user is placed in financial jeopardy is through the occurrence of workers compensation claims and chemical injury lawsuits that are brought in the wake of exposure to the offending element.

If chemical injury lawsuits are brought, damage to the user’s public image could cause additional financial fallout by complicating business relationships with customers and partners. Today, green business solutions are in, and solutions that jeopardize human health and the environment are out. Now more than ever, the eco friendliness of a company’s practices impact business.

Need a Safe Parts Washer Solvent?
If you use a parts washer solvent that could cause problems for your outfit in the ways above, the solvent isn’t the safest choice for the health of workers, the state of the environment, or company finances — all of which interconnect. If you use a solvent that poses these risks, Ecolink can provide a stock or custom parts washer solvent that mitigates or eliminates the problems.

To get started on implementing a safe parts washer solvent, please call us today at (800) 563-1305, or contact us here. We look forward to hearing from you!

Non VOC parts cleaners

On January 1, 2015, government regulations brought down the curtain on what was previously one of the best non VOC parts cleaners on the market: ECOLINK 3005. Companies phased out the parts cleaner because one of its primary active ingredients, HCFC-225 (a.k.a. AK-225) was phased out due to its ozone depleting potential. However, just because ECOLINK 3005 is no longer a viable cleaning solution doesn’t mean that its cleaning power is off limits, too.

You may be unable to use ECOLINK 3005 in its original form, but you have the alternative of letting us create a custom solvent that has the same applications and benefits of the original but without the use of HCFC-225. With that in mind, let’s do a concise overview of the essential data for ECOLINK 3005 to see if a cleaner that has the same characteristics as its parent solvent would be a good fit for your company or organization’s precision parts cleaning requirements.

Essential Data for ECOLINK 3005
ECOLINK 3005 is an environmentally preferred, ultra high-purity cleaning agent for electrical contacts and precision parts. A custom blend of the cleaner that has the efficacy of ECOLINK 3005 but without the ozone depleting chemical HCFC-225 is an excellent replacement for solutions whose chemicals are more damaging to the environment (e.g., CFC-113, HCFC-141b, HCFC-225) and more toxic to humans (e.g., trichloroethylene and MEK).

A custom blend that improves the environmental safety of ECOLINK 3005 while delivering the same power of the original solution can be used for various cleaning operations that were once performed with solutions that contain the aforementioned chemicals. Applications would include:

  • Removing oil and hydraulic fluid from mechanical equipment
  • Cleaning handling soil from circuits before they are reassembled
  • Removing greasy accumulations from assembly line parts
  • Cleaning fiber optic connectors
  • Buffering gel from fiber optic cables
  • Removing contaminants from transmitters, amplifiers and transceivers
  • Cleaning soil from optical interfaces, electronic interfaces, and drive circuitry
  • Removing airborne dirt from printed circuit boards
  • Insulating residue from selector switches and relays

When used for these applications, a custom blend whose efficacy mirrors ECOLINK 3005’s delivers impressive benefits compared to competing non VOC parts cleaners. Especially noteworthy are the benefits for cleaning parts that are commonly found electrical equipment.

  • Non flammable formulation (i.e., no flashpoint)
  • Exceptionally fast evaporation
  • Excellent degreasing and defluxing power
  • Leaves no residue
  • Safe for various materials, including plastic

For many eco friendly companies and organizations, ECOLINK 3005 was the premier option among non VOC parts cleaners for maintaining the surface integrity of electrical contacts and precision parts. However, because HCFC-225 was phased out at the beginning of 2015, using the solvent hasis no longer been an option. There is, however, the option of having Ecolink create a custom cleaner that delivers the power of ECOLINK 3005 without using HCFC-225.

Contact Us for a Custom Solution
In addition to supplying stock cleaning solutions, we formulate custom solutions that are tailored to the needs of specific customers. If you need the cleaning capabilities of ECOLINK 3005 in a solution that is free of HCFC-225, please call us today at (800) 563-1305, or complete the contact form on our website. We look forward to providing options for non VOC parts cleaners!

The Advantages of Using Water Based Solvents for a Parts Washer

When we think about cleaning things with water, we often about removing light accumulations of dirt and food based residues. Water works great for removing these substances, but it can also remove much tougher accumulations when it is used in the form of an industrial grade water based solvent that is placed in an industrial parts washing system.

If your organization is in the market for parts washer solvents, there are several advantages to using a water based solvents for a parts washer instead of relying on chemical based solvents that contain an easily measurable percentage of toxic ingredients. Below, we look at five of these advantages to help you determine whether water based solvents would be a good option for your needs.

  1. Ionized Water Technology

Unlike plain water, water based solvents for a parts washer often feature super ionized water, which is water that has a significantly higher concentration of hydrogen atoms (a.k.a. ions) than tap water. This unique, alkaline formulation excels as an all-purpose parts cleaner. The highly alkalinized water molecules bind to soils and lift them away from the surface of soiled parts.

  1. Better for the Environment

Water based solvents can be just as efficacious as chemical based solvents that use harsh, toxic ingredients to power away tough accumulations. However, compared to toxic cleaners, which commonly produce hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), water based cleaners tend to be better for the environment. This is primarily because their main ingredient is purified water.

  1. Safer for Workers

Even when water based solvents for a parts washer contain ingredients that require workers to follow OSHA safety standards, the fact that their main ingredient is water means that they produce a lower level of harmful emissions than a solvent whose main ingredient is a hazardous chemical. The fewer HAPs a cleaner emits, the fewer health problems it precipitates in workers.

  1. Opportunity to Save Money

Because water is a plentiful substance, water based solvents often have a lower price point than chemical based solvents. An exception is when a chemical based solvent contains cheap chemicals and a water based solvent contains additional ingredients that aren’t so inexpensive. However, if you need to reduce solvent costs, water based solvents are generally a good option.

  1. Great for Low Emission Cleaning

Water based solvents are also a great option for organizations that need to minimize harmful emissions, particularly organizations located in low emission zones (LEZs), where caps on emissions are exceptionally tight. Even you don’t have an emissions issue to contend with, using eco friendly water based solvents will help you be a good steward to the environment.

Looking for Water Based Solvents for a Parts Washer?
If you need water based solvents for a parts washing system, Ecolink has a variety of stock solutions to choose from. We also create custom solvents for organizations that need solvents that are tailored to unique cleaning requirements. To get started on choosing a water based solvent, call us today at (800) 563-1305, or use the contact page on our website. We look forward to providing you with a non-toxic, water based solvent for your parts washing needs.

Choosing a Solvent Parts Washer: A Step-by-Step Guide

A solvent parts washer is a unique machine that is designed to clean parts by treating them with solvent that is contained in the washing chamber. For organizations that need to wash a large volume of parts on a regular basis, manually cleaning the parts is often unfeasible, as it would require too much time. The only alternative is to use a solvent parts washer that cleans parts safely and quickly. With this in mind, we take a look at how to choose the right parts washer for your needs.

  1. Composition of Parts

Step one is to consider the composition of the parts you need to clean. For example, in terms of a washer’s operating temperature and the type of solvent it contains, there is a big difference between cleaning stainless steel parts and cleaning parts that are made from vulcanized rubber. Choosing a washer based on composition of parts helps preserve the appearance and dimensional stability of cleaned parts.

  1. Accumulations That Must be Removed

Step two is to determine what type of accumulations must be removed from parts. For example, in terms of solvent choice, there’s a significant difference between weak solvents that simply remove dirt and tough solvents that cut through thick carbon accumulations. Choosing a solvent that’s effective for removing the accumulations in question helps prevent rework that hinders productivity.

  1. Turnaround Time for Parts Washing

Step three is to calculate how quickly you need parts to be cleaned after they are placed in the solvent parts washer. If you need a fast turnaround time, choosing a washer that has a larger than normal washing chamber can help greatly. Also, be sure to consider the time it takes to complete the cleaning process, as some washers have longer cleaning processes than others.

  1. Frequency of Washer Use

Step four is to predict how frequently you will use the parts washing system. If you need to perform parts washing daily or several times a week, investing in an industrial grade washer is ideal. Residential grade and commercial grade parts washers may cost less than industrial grade models. However, using them for industrial parts cleaning operations can cause them to wear prematurely and fail during service.

  1. Options for Solvent Use

Step five is to consider the full range of parts cleaning needs in terms of what solvents are required to remove what collects on parts. For example, if you need to remove tough accumulations of bitumen, as well as moderate accumulations of grease, you may need a different solvent for each cleaning process, unless you use a solvent that can remove multiple accumulations simultaneously. The latter option offers the most efficiency.

Need Help Choosing a Solvent Parts Washer?
If so, contact the solvent specialists at Ecolink. Although we don’t sell parts washers, we do provide a line of highly efficacious parts washing solvents that have commendable safety profiles. Consequently, we have an in-depth understanding of what type of solvent parts washers and cleaning solvents to use for various industrial parts cleaning operations.

For years, we have provided organizations with industrial grade solvents that work great for the toughest parts cleaning jobs. If you need help selecting the right parts washer and parts washing solvent for your requirements, take advantage of our expertise, and call us at (800) 563-1305. You can also reach us by referring to the contact page on our website. We look forward to hearing from you!

Choosing a Parts Cleaning Solvent for Stainless Steel

Due to its excellent dimensional stability, corrosion resistance under normal conditions, and clean appearance, stainless steel is one of the most commonly used metallic alloys for the composition of equipment housing and precision parts for numerous types of machinery. Maintaining these qualities in stainless steel depends partly on how it is cleaned. If you need a parts cleaning solvent for stainless steel, taking the six steps below will help you select one.

  1. Determine the Type of Stainless Steel

There are five families of stainless steel: austenitic, ferritic, martensitic, duplex, and precipitation hardening. All stainless steels contain at least 10.5% chromium by mass (chromium gives the metal its characteristic shine). However, different families of stainless steel contain different levels of chromium. Because chromium can be a highly reactive chemical compound, it’s important to determine the type of stainless steel you must clean before you choose a cleaner.

  1. Determine the Ideal Cleaning Method

For the sake of efficiency, stainless steel parts that play a crucial role in work processes are typically cleaned in one of two ways: They are sprayed with an aerosol or pump action cleaner that has a high evaporation rate or placed in a parts washing system. The ideal cleaning method for your parts determines the basic type of solvent you need to complete the cleaning process.

  1. Avoid Halogenated Cleaning Solvents

Solvents that contain halogen salts — particularly chlorides — corrode stainless steel and ruin its attractive surface. Over time, surface corrosion can penetrate parts and lead to compromised dimensional stability. Prime examples of halogens that should be avoided when cleaning stainless steel are: fluorine, chlorine, bromine, iodine, and astitine. Wikipedia offers a list of halogenated solvents that should not be used to clean stainless steel under any condition.

  1. Avoid Solvents That Leave a Residue

Most organizations want stainless steel parts to remain bright and clean. Part of keeping them that way requires using a parts cleaning solvent that doesn’t leave a residue. You may not notice the residue that a residual cleaner leaves behind, but the residue will almost certainly attract dirt and grime to the parts. By helping stainless steel parts remain clean, using a non-residue parts cleaning solvent will help you perform the cleaning process less frequently.

  1. Avoid Solvents That Emit Pollutants

Regardless of their efficacy for cleaning stainless steel, solvents that emit hazardous air pollutants (HAPs) should be avoided due to their effect on workers’ health. HAP solvents can cause acute conditions such as dizziness and chronic conditions such as nerve damage. In addition to impacting workers, these conditions also affect companies in the form of increased sick days taken, workers compensation, and chemical injury lawsuits (a.k.a. toxic torts).

  1. Consult a Cleaning Solvent Supplier

Choosing a parts cleaning solvent for stainless steel involves several considerations. If you need help choosing the right solution, don’t resort to guesswork. Contact the solvent specialists at Ecolink by calling (800) 563-1305, or use the contact page on our website. If one of our readymade cleaners doesn’t meet your requirements, we will create a custom cleaner that does. We look forward to supplying you with the best cleaner for your stainless steel cleaning process.