There are three main reasons why companies and organizations still use solvents that contain trichloroethylene (TCE): the chemical is highly affordable, it suits a variety of solvent-based applications — from degreasing to formulating pepper spray — and it’s financially inconvenient to halt a solvent-based operation while one solution is swapped with another.
From a business perspective, these are good reasons to keep using TCE despite its toxicity. However, over time, TCE can go from being one of your proverbial best friends to being a foe like no other. This happens when the chemical causes chronic illnesses in workers, including cancer. Millions of dollars in settlements and legal fees can ensue, and a company can kiss its reputation for being a good steward to its workers goodbye.
How Easy is it to Switch?
In terms of cost and effort, it would be much harder to replace machines that use TCE solvent than to replace the solvent. There’s no equipment that’s specifically designed for TCE, which means a suitable replacement for the chemical can be “dropped in” the machinery without an appreciable change to the cleaning process. In fact, you may find that, even though a replacement has a better safety profile, it delivers more cleaning power than TCE.
In any case, there are four steps an industrial solvent supplier such as Ecolink can help you take to replace your carcinogenic TCE solvent: examine your requirements, identify possible TCE replacement cleaners, test solvents with a free samples, evaluate results, and finalize the order.
- Examine Requirements
What is your TCE solvent used for? Examining the applications reveals important information, such as whether a dielectric formulation is required, whether aerosol is preferable, whether a high flash point is needed, etc.
- Identify Replacements
Are there individual solvents or a line of solvents that offer the same efficacy as your TCE solvent but without carcinogenic effects? Among our TCE alternative cleaners, solvents from the FluoSolv® line often make excellent substitutes for TCE-based solvents.
- Test Replacements
After one or more TCE alternative cleaners are identified, we can send you a free sample of the solvent(s), so you can see how well they work. If a sample works well, you’ve found a replacement. If the sample leaves something to be desired, we can alter its formulation to create a custom solvent.
- Finalize Order
After a stock solvent or custom solvent proves it can meet your needs, you can order the solution in a small, as-needed supply, a bulk supply, or anything in-between. The formulation data for a custom solvent will be kept on file, so you needn’t have it created over again.
Contact Us Today
Ecolink specializes in providing industrial grade, eco-friendly cleaning solvents. To get started on identifying TCE replacement cleaners, please call us today at (800) 563-1305, or send us an email through our contact form. We look forward to helping you choose cleaners that are safer for your workforce, better for the environment, and easy to implement in your cleaning system.