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State of the Solutions: A Look at Perc’s Alternatives

Ian P. Murphy |

CHICAGO — As perc is slowly phased out of lawful use, the industry’s longtime favorite continues to face sporadic, localized ban threats, recently in New Jersey and Philadelphia. So, what’s going on with the alternative solvents?
General acceptance of high-flashpoint hydrocarbons such as DF-2000 and EcoSolv is driving most machinery sales. Variations on hydrocarbons such as no-distill, powder-filtration options and the vaporized hydrocarbon iPura system are also attracting fans.
Also running in Class III-A machines is GreenEarth silicon solvent, which now has more than 1,300 licensed users worldwide. The solvent’s base, D5 silicone, is being checked for toxicity and persistence issues by Environment Canada as part of a systematic review of industrial chemicals; GreenEarth expects the solvent to be unaffected.
Rynex made an appearance at the recent California Cleaners Association (CCA) trade show, partnered with Porterville, Calif.-based distributor Blackburn Enterprises; all other glycol ethers are apparently out of production.
Liquid CO2 continues to be a handful of operators’ choice for ecofriendliness and upscale appeal, and California is pushing for new 100% wetcleaning operations.
And after just a year on the market, the “hybrid” surfactant-and-CO2 Solvair system is up and running in more than a dozen plants nationwide, and reporting good results.
 

About the author

Ian P. Murphy

American Drycleaner

Ian P. Murphy is a freelance writer based in Chicago, and was the editor of American Drycleaner from 1999 to 2011.

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