Cleaning with Trichloroethylene

Ask an Expert From: Products Finishing,

Posted on: 8/1/2001

Question: I need to have a part cleaned with 1,1,2-trichloroethane.

Question:

I need to have a part cleaned with 1,1,2-trichloroethane. I would like to outsource this one time need. Where can I have it done? The part is about 10 inches in outer diameter and 5 inches thick. J.K.

Answer:

I have to assume you are referring to 1,1,2-trichloroethylene or more simply trichloroethylene (TCE) and not 1,1,2-trichlorethane. 1,1,2-trichloroethane is not a traditional metal degreasing solvent such as 1,1,1-trichloroethane (TCA). The 1,1,2-version has a significantly higher boiling point (237F) compared to the 1,1,1-trichloroethane.

As you may be aware, 1,1,1-trichloroethane has been found to be an ozone-depleting chemical, and as such, its use has been severely restricted. Several years ago it became impossible to buy or sell virgin 1,1,1-trichloroethane for degreasing purposes. Existing sources could continue use of it (under all applicable environmental laws) with recycled solvent, although I am not aware of anybody currently still using it. If a company continues to use chlorinated solvent degreasing, it is most likely using trichloroethylene. There are probably several methods of searching for job shops that use trichloroethylene for degreasing. The small business administration in your state could probably assist you. Additionally, Products Finishing maintains a comprehensive listing of job shops on its Web page. Go to www.pfonline.com and click on ShopFinder. Select "Cleaning/Surface Preparation", then on the next screen, select "Degreasing" as the process to search by. You can also specify the state on this page. The listing will provide you with names of shops that perform degreasing along with phone numbers. I have to presume degreasing is of the solvent-type since there are separate categories for alkaline and acid cleaning.

 



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