For decades, vapor degreasing was the “go to” precision cleaning technology. This came to an end in the 1990s when the ozone issue forced the phase-out of the most popular vapor degreasing solvents. Water-based cleaning systems filled some of the void. But today users of aqueous cleaners know those systems guzzle electricity, have large footprints, require significant capital investment, are maintenance intensive, and usually require extensive wastewater treatment systems. It’s time to revisit vapor degreasing.
Critical cleaning processes are found in many industries and they all have different definitions of ‘clean’. The author suggests the definition of critical cleaning is simple: if the cost of a cleaning failure is high, then it’s mission-critical. The author then explains the deployment of low-boiling solvents in vapor degreasers offer a better, faster and less expensive option for many critical cleaning applications. In the conclusion, the author also suggests specific cleaning fluids for specific applications.
The authors explain the thermodynamics and operational techniques behind the working of a modern vapor degreaser. They contrasts those systems with old-style solvent degreasers as well as the complexities of aqueous cleaning systems. The pros and cons of each are explored as well as a basic shopping list of features and capabilities that will help companies keep cleaning costs low. This white paper is a great primer on the basics of vapor degreasing.