thread: Guide to Acid, Alkali and Bleach Cleaners

  1. #1
    Life Member. Every Australian needs a Farmer.

    Dec 2005
    In Bankworld with Barbara

    Guide to Acid, Alkali and Bleach Cleaners

    Vinegar (acetic acid): Clear distilled vinegar is a mild descaling agent and can be used for cutting through calcium deposits and limescale in toilets, sinks and baths and removing rust. It can also be used to clean brass and bronze and post and pans made of copper, stainless steel and aluminum.
    Lemon Juice (citric acid): Lmeon juice is useful for removing mineral deposits around sinks and bath taps, and for brightening up pots and pans made from brass, bronze, aluminium, copper and stainless steel. Do not leave it in contact with metals for too long however or it may tarnish them. It can also be used as a mild bleach.
    Lime Juice (acetic acid): Lime juice can be used in the same was as Lemon juice.
    Phosphoric acid: You can use this mild acid to clean your sink, bathtub and tiles and in low concentrations it will clean your metal pots and pans too.
    Hydrochloric acid: This acid is poinsonous and can damage skin and mucous membranes, so use it with care. It can also corrode metals. You can use it to clean toilet bowls and bleach nylon.
    Sulphuric acid: This powerful acid cleaner will sort out your toilet and drains.
    Bicarbonate of Soda: This is a very mild alkali that has a great many uses in the home. In addition to making an excellent scourer, this versatile powder can be used to clean baths and sinks, polish silver jewellery, deodorize unpleasant smells and soften water.
    Detergent: Detergent is a popular alkaline cleaner in the home and is most commonly used in dishwashers and laundry use.
    Ammonia: This alkali is a little stronger than detergent, and is used to remove grease and dirt and to strip wax.
    Borax: Borax is a white crystaline powder. It is a moderate alkaline salt, stronger than bicrab but not as strong as detergent. It can be added to a washload of laundry for a more powerful clean and it can also help neutralise the strong ammonia smell of urine.
    Soap: As for detergent
    Lye (caustic soda and potash): Lye is a very strong alkali and is used to manufacture soap. It is also an active ingredient in oven and drain cleaners. It can burn the skin and eyes and the fumes are toxic. It is also very poisonous if taken internally, so keep it locked away. Do not mix with other chemicals.
    Sunlight: is a natural bleaching agent. To bleach white cotton, wash it and spread it out to dry in the sun. Leave it outside for at least a day or two to three days if you can.
    Lemon Juice: has a very mild bleaching action and can be used to remove organic stains such as blood and grass. It is also effective for removing mildew and stains on marble. Do not leave it on for too long as it can cause discolouration.
    White Distilled Vinegar: Another mild bleach and is very good for removing stains on silk and wool. But beware - it should never be used on linen, cotton or acetate.
    Ammonia: It can be added to your laundry to boost brightness and help your detergent clean better. You can also use it to remove fresh perspiration and urine stains. Never mix with chlorine bleach as it will give off hazardous fumes.
    Oxygen Bleach: Also known as Ďall fabricí bleach, It is milder than chlorine bleach and can be used for most whites and colour fast dyes, but not on wool and delicate fabrics. Oxygen bleach needs hot water in order to become active and should be mixed with the laundry water prior to adding the clothes.
    Hydrogen Peroxide: You can use diluted peroxide to bleach delicate fabrics such as white silk and wool. Leave the fabric to soak in the solution for about half an hour, unless wool, in which case leave for only 5 minutes.
    Chlorine Bleach: It is a strong household bleach that will whiten white cottons and is usually safe on colour fast cottons and some synthetic fibres. However it should never be used on nylon, spandex, silk, wool, leather, fiberglass or mohair. Take care not to breathe the fumes and avoid contact with the eyes and skin.
    Colour Remover: Colour removers do not remove dyes. They break them down so that they can be dyed with another colour. When a dye from a coloured fabric runs with a white or light coloured fabric in the wash, a colour remover can be useful for stripping out the unwanted colour and restoring the fabric to its original colour. Follow the instructions carefully.

  2. #2
    BellyBelly Member

    Jun 2009
    Stuart Mill, near St Arnaud, Victoria

    ∑ Sunlight: is a natural bleaching agent. To bleach white cotton, wash it and spread it out to dry in the sun. Leave it outside for at least a day or two to three days if you can."

    The Scots used to whiten their yarns and their cottons etc in trays filled with urine and left in the sun, as the sunlight turns the urine into bleach!
    (Useless fact for the day!)