A cleaning agent is one that removes dirt and odors from hard or soft surfaces. While many cleaning agents contain antiseptic or antibacterial properties, not all do. Adding an alkaline, or strong base, such as potassium hydroxide, ammonium hydroxide (NH3, or household ammonia) or sodium hydroxide, to a cleaning agent enhances the cleaning agent’s ability to dissolve grease, fat, oil, and stains containing a protein component. The last component of this topic–the “all-natural” portion–is on the minds of millions of consumers recently. But what do we mean when we mention an all-natural alkaline cleaner, produced and distributed by a sanitation chemical supplier?
Because ammonia is readily available in grocery stores and considered completely safe for household use, it is a commonly used natural alkaline cleaner. Adding ammonia to water creates ammonium hydroxide, an all-purpose cleaner noted for its streak-free shine. The ability to clean without leaving any residue gives ammonium hydroxide top billing in cleaning and shining glass, stainless steel, or other smooth, glossy finishes. Ammonium hydroxide is also strongly antiseptic, another characteristic sanitation chemical suppliers and consumers appreciate.
Another natural alkaline cleaner is sodium carbonate (Na2CO3), commonly known as washing soda or soda ash. Closely resembling sodium carbonate is baking soda, or sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3). Both these alkaline cleaners are excellent silver cleaners as they work with aluminum foil by removing the aluminum oxide molecules from the foil to bind hydrogen with the sulfide on the tarnished silver, thereby renewing its shine. Washing soda is also a common water softener in laundry detergents. Because it is an alkaline, sodium carbonate removes many of the everyday spills on our clothes, such as grease and oil. The list of cleaning uses for sodium bicarbonate is long and varied, and includes cleaning brushes, teeth, hands, fiberglass, bathtubs and sinks, pots and pans, coffeepots and cups with coffee and tea stains, floors, furniture, et cetera. Almost any surface with grime, oil, or a grease build-up will sparkle when baking soda cleans it.
Finding a naturally occurring proven cleaner with a pH level greater than pH 7 will provide you with an all-natural alkaline cleaner with myriad uses that does not damage the environment or the individuals using it. Contact Bell Chem, your Orlando sanitation chemical supplier, for additional information on all-natural alkaline cleaners.