The Advantages Of Using Fluorinated Solvents
Over the past few decades, industry has been moving toward more environmentally benign materials and processes. This trend has led to the phasing out and/or replacement of many industrial chemicals, including industrial solvents.
While some solvents, such as chlorofluorocarbons, are no longer available for routine industrial use, others remain in widespread use. It is up to individual companies to determine whether and how to replace the solvents they use that are toxic or environmentally hazardous.
While it’s a common belief replacement of a standard chemical with one that poses less harm to the environment must involve a trade-off, this need not necessarily be true. Fluorinated solvents are a case in point. Formulations such as our NEXT 3000 and EnSolv® NEXT industrial degreasing solvents are excellent drop-in substitutes for ozone-depleting chemicals such as CFCs, HFCs and PFCs.
Fluorinated solvents are an excellent choice for companies wishing to minimize their impact on the environment and safeguard employee health without compromising profitability or performance. Used as a direct replacement for chlorinated and brominated degreasing solvents (including HCFC-225 (AK-225), trichloroethylene (TCE), n-propyl bromide (nPB), and others), this new generation of solvents reduces ozone depletion and offers low global warming potential. In addition, these low-odor, nonflammable chemicals have very low toxicity and contribute to a safer workplace environment. This means less government regulation and lower compliance costs.
What is the purpose for Using Fluorinated Solvents
Whether the purpose is to meet or exceed sustainability goals, or to improve cost efficiency, fluorinated solvents are also an excellent choice for companies wishing to implement solvent recycling and recovery programs. This is because they are exceptionally stable, and can be used again and again without losing potency. In addition, their stability precludes the need for stabilizer additives or acid acceptance testing — another way they can save a company time and money.
Another advantage resulting from the stability of these industrial solvents is their broad compatibility with a wide variety of materials. Fluorinated solvents can be used safely with most plastics, elastomers, metals and substrates. Their cleaning action is highly efficient, evaporating quickly and leaving very little residue.
Here is a summary of some of the advantages of using fluorinated solvents:
- Zero ozone depletion potential
- Low global warming potential
- Quick to evaporate
- High solvency
- Low surface tension
- Low boiling point
- Minimal residue
- Stable (no need for stabilizer additives)
- DOT nonhazardous transport
- SNAP approved (degreasing and aerosol)
- No hazardous air pollutants (HAPs)
- Highly compatible with a wide range of materials
- No need to alter or replace equipment
- Vapor degreasing
- Precision cleaning applications, including cold wiping, aerosol spraying and refrigerant flushing
- Defluxing of electronic parts and circuitry
- Carrier fluid for silicone and other lubricants
- Moisture displacement fluid
Common Applications for Fluorinated Solvents
Fluorinated solvents such as NEXT 3000 and EnSolv® NEXT are excellent alternatives for more hazardous chemicals in a wide range of industrial applications in many different industries. Some of these include:
Of special note is the use of fluorinated solvents in vapor degreasing. In most cases, these solvents can be used as a direct, drop-in replacement in existing vapor degreasing equipment. This eliminates the need for costly retraining or equipment conversion and/or replacement.
Perhaps most exciting is that these solvents offer all the aforementioned advantages without sacrificing efficiency or performance. Because of their high solvency strength, low nonvolatile residue and low surface tension, fluorinated solvents provide excellent cleaning performance even for the most exacting precision applications.
To learn more about how Enviro Tech’s fluorinated solvent products can meet your industrial cleaning needs and/or help you meet compliance guidelines, or to request a sample, call us at 708-249-6501 — or contact us here.