The Trouble with nPB, TCE, and Harmful Degreasers
With significant toxicity concerns on the use of the vapor degreasing solvents n-propyl bromide (nPB) and trichloroethylene (TCE) and a global phase-out of ozone depleting substances like hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs), many engineers are seeking a safer, more sustainable alternative. Lead the charge and make the safer choice with 3M™ Novec™.
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Normal propyl bromide (nPB) has been used for decades as a replacement 1-1-1 Trichloroethane (TCE) and other harmful vapor degreaser solvents. Limited exposure to nPB in a vapor degreaser can lead to acute health concerns like dizziness, paresthesia, respiratory difficulty, mental confusion & more. However, extended exposure to n-propyl bromide can result in more serious long-term neurological damage, cancer, and permanent paresthesia.
n-propyl bromide is a powerful liquid degreaser solvent but the potential health ramifications should cause concern for employees and maintenance engineers who are responsible for vapor degreasers.
For legacy vapor degreasers it is possible for errant solvent vapors to escape containment and pose inhalation dangers. These TCE or nPB solvent vapors migrate away from the metal parts & the intended vapor zone and extend into the airspace of the workshop.
Why Use Novec™ 73DE to Replace nPB or TCE?
Novec™ 73DE from 3M™ is a premium fluid engineered for use in immersion cleaning or vapor degreasing. This specially formulated product provides very high solvency, low delivered surface tension and is non-flammable. Novec™ 73DE offers an excellent liquid replacement for ozone depleting chemistries, harmful and toxic solvents and even aqueous based cleaning solutions as it offers faster cycle times, reduced energy consumption, and improved cleaning performance for complex parts & components.