Monday, February 18, 2013

Understanding stone maintenance chemicals

Understanding stone maintenance chemicals

In the stone maintenance industry there are two types of chemicals that are utilized, water-based and solvent-based.

Solvent-based chemicals do not contain any water do not register a PH balance. These ingredients are only soluble in other solvent. Some examples of solvent chemicals are paint thinners, most penetrating sealers (impregnators), D-Limonene, and alcohol.

Water-based chemicals are chemicals that contain water and have a PH balance. chemicals mixed in water are soluble in water. There are a water-based chemical such as neutral cleaners, ammonia, bleach, and most chemicals that have a PH balance.

In order to determine the different between solvent and water based chemicals, read the Material Safety Data Sheet (MSDS). Most solvent have flash point and can ignite. Most water-based chemicals do not have a flash point unless contain a solvent ingredient to add strength to the product. For example, many degreasers contain D-limonene. In most stone care situations, if a stain or coating is water-based, then water-based chemicals are needed to remove it.

Listed below are samples of the two types of chemicals:

Alkalis D-limonene
Acids Alcohol
Hydrogen peroxide Siloxane
All purpose cleaners Acetone
Glycols Mineral spirits

It is advisable to use water-based chemicals. The reason is due to the environmental concern that solvent-based chemicals are harmful to our environment. Water based chemical are usually more user friendly. Remember to always wear proper protective gear when using any chemical and them all out of the reach of children.

Compiled by Fnd Stone Advice for the blog

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