Chemical safety poll | TruckMount Forums #1 Carpet Cleaning Forums

Chemical safety poll

How important is safe(r) chemistry to you?

  • 100% green

    Votes: 2 8.3%
  • Mostly green

    Votes: 8 33.3%
  • Moderate yet powerful

    Votes: 12 50.0%
  • Caustic yet cheap

    Votes: 2 8.3%

  • Total voters
    24

rob allen

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How important is safe(r) cleaning chemistry to you? We can easily make harmful hazardous to breathe and handle cleaning solutions that would clean well for cheap. At TMF we care about our customers and your clients safety. Some online formulators are using very dangerous active ingredients and harmful fragrances. The use high ph caustic agents that are not only dangerous to your, health and others but cause re-soil issues, open one to lawsuits and damage furnishing. Including household furnishings, transitions, stainless steel, degrees fiber and voids warranties.

However we at TMF strive for safest yet most effective cleaning solutions. Their are low ph cleaning agents that cost more, clean better, do not re-soil, do not void warranties are extremely safe at rtu. Plus all of our products are 100% soap free with no sticky or harmful residue. Yes it costs a little more on our part but provides peace of mind for you, your techs and clients who have children and pets that come into close contact with carpet. Still, I thought I would start a poll to see how important safety is to you.

Green;

IMG_1039.jpg


Mostly Green;

IMG_1041.jpg



Moderate yet powerful;

IMG_1040.jpg


Caustic;

chem hazard pics.JPG
 

akleenerimage

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So the biopro10k has a health rating of 5? And there is butoxy in it and that is considered safe? Am I not reading this properly ?
A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency review finds 2-butoxyethanol causes red blood cell damage and hemolytic anemia in animal studies via inhalation, skin exposure and ingestion. Humans may be less sensitive.
That is one of the products in the biopro10k ? What am I missing here?
 
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rob allen

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So the biopro10k has a health rating of 5? And there is butoxy in it and that is considered safe? Am I not reading this properly ?
A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency review finds 2-butoxyethanol causes red blood cell damage and hemolytic anemia in animal studies via inhalation, skin exposure and ingestion. Humans may be less sensitive.
That is one of the products in the biopro10k ? What am I missing here?
It has a very small or "moderate" amount compared to say Ultrapac and Slams. Table salt can kill you if you eat a cup in one sitting. But moderate amounts salt is fine.
 

akleenerimage

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I would disagree on even the moderate amounts of salt being fine.. but that is another conversation. It just seems that there are other products around that have zero health ratings that are way safer without the 2butoxyethanol that still do a great job so why add it in? I get that it is a solvent but why not d limonene then?

And that is for the rsf. How is that even close to being safe?

There are many degrees of safe though...if you can have something with all zeros on the sds side of things then why wouldn't you use that if it still cleans great.
 
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Robert86

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Chemicals are chemicals. Some are safer for people and animals, but, especially at our level of work, they are still chemicals and still pose health risks. When looking a "safe" chemicals, I look for biodegradability. Is the waste that I have to dispose of going to breakdown into the environment just fine, or is it going to just be more harmful chemicals down the drain.
 

Mama Fen

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There's a reason that I tell my guys "we never ever use the word SAFE in this industry."

The big chemical companies like Bridgepoint, Prochem, CTI, Chemspec, and the like have spent DECADES of time and THOUSANDS of man-hours formulating products that not only work, but present the lowest possible risk to the technician when they are used as directed and when proper PPE is used.

The people who develop these products are not fly-by-night hucksters, nor are they part-time home chemists. They are professional chemists who carry degrees in their field, and do this all day and all night. It is their only job.

Their success or failure in their chosen field is determined by how well their products work FOR YOU. You literally drive their development, and they make what you demand.

I'm all about being as non-toxic as possible. But there are times when a job requires aggressive chemistry to undo the damage done by neglect. You can't always be "safe" and "green" and "eco-friendly". Sometimes you've gotta get nasty. Show me a customer who has consistently maintained their carpet properly, and I'll show you someone who never calls a carpet cleaner.

There are plenty of less toxic chemicals out there that you can offer your customer, but you must ask yourself what percentage of your customers consider it their primary concern in choosing a cleaner, versus the percentage who are worried about speed, results, and price?

There's a reason we've seen the same chemicals used over and over ad nauseum in this industry - THEY WORK.

The hazard risks in properly diluted carpet cleaning chemicals are no worse than those found on laundry detergent, household ammonia, Windex, dish soap, or housepaint.

The difference lies in your exposure as a professional to the concentrated forms of these chemicals. What comes into the customer's house is diluted. And if you do your due diligence and rinse appropriately, the small amount of residue left behind when you're gone is so negligible as to not even be there at all.

If you're not willing to take responsibility for your own safety and put yourself at a level above that of the average homeowner, that's not the fault of the chemical manufacturer.
 
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wandwizard

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So the biopro10k has a health rating of 5? And there is butoxy in it and that is considered safe? Am I not reading this properly ?
A U.S. Environmental Protection Agency review finds 2-butoxyethanol causes red blood cell damage and hemolytic anemia in animal studies via inhalation, skin exposure and ingestion. Humans may be less sensitive.
That is one of the products in the biopro10k ? What am I missing here?

@rob allen may have to comment more on this, but from what I can tell you were NOT reading the health rating, but the ORAL toxicity rating of either a specific chemical or the concentrate. BIG difference! The actual health rating given on page 6 is a rating of 1. That is the rating of the finished product the way it comes to you for use. The oral toxicity rating of 5 probably means exactly what it appears to mean. You drink this particular chem and it will likely either kill you or do serious harm. I don't plan on drinking it myself. This is why they almost always recommend the use of PPE, particularly goggles and gloves when mixing these chems. Skin and Eye exposure should be avoided with just about any chem with very, very few exceptions. Again, I'd read this sds again. The section 2 is for the hazards, but page 6 (last page) is the Health ratings. I could be wrong about this. Just trying to help. I think I can safely say they don't want you to drink this stuff, get it in your eyes, or get it on your skin. After being diluted as much as we dilute it I doubt there is any real respiratory concern. It clearly should be kept out of reach of children like most other chems. For professional use only.

Btw, if I'm not mistaken and I'm pretty certain I'm not, there is no such thing at a health or flammability rating of 5. Four is the most dangerous. I wouldn't even touch something with a 4, period.

https://s3.amazonaws.com/tmfsds/biopro10k.pdf
 
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wandwizard

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There's a reason that I tell my guys "we never ever use the word SAFE in this industry."

The big chemical companies like Bridgepoint, Prochem, CTI, Chemspec, and the like have spent DECADES of time and THOUSANDS of man-hours formulating products that not only work, but present the lowest possible risk to the technician when they are used as directed and when proper PPE is used.

The people who develop these products are not fly-by-night hucksters, nor are they part-time home chemists. They are professional chemists who carry degrees in their field, and do this all day and all night. It is their only job.

Their success or failure in their chosen field is determined by how well their products work FOR YOU. You literally drive their development, and they make what you demand.

I'm all about being as non-toxic as possible. But there are times when a job requires aggressive chemistry to undo the damage done by neglect. You can't always be "safe" and "green" and "eco-friendly". Sometimes you've gotta get nasty. Show me a customer who has consistently maintained their carpet properly, and I'll show you someone who never calls a carpet cleaner.

There are plenty of less toxic chemicals out there that you can offer your customer, but you must ask yourself what percentage of your customers consider it their primary concern in choosing a cleaner, versus the percentage who are worried about speed, results, and price?

There's a reason we've seen the same chemicals used over and over ad nauseum in this industry - THEY WORK.

The hazard risks in properly diluted carpet cleaning chemicals are no worse than those found on laundry detergent, household ammonia, Windex, dish soap, or housepaint.

The difference lies in your exposure as a professional to the concentrated forms of these chemicals. What comes into the customer's house is diluted. And if you do your due diligence and rinse appropriately, the small amount of residue left behind when you're gone is so negligible as to not even be there at all.

If you're not willing to take responsibility for your own safety and put yourself at a level above that of the average homeowner, that's not the fault of the chemical manufacturer.

In an ideal world a single product with a zero rating across the board that's safe for any textile and can actually clean just about anything you throw at it would be ideal. I have't found such a thing in my close to 31 years now although I have seen some very good ones. I haven't tried a lot of the so called green products. I noticed some seem to have no better health rating that some of their non-green counterparts if I'm not mistaken. Pretty rare to see a health rating of 0 and no toxic or carcinogenic materials.
 

Mama Fen

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For the record, I could take Flex, one of Bridgepoint's highest-selling chemicals, and drink it straight and it would likely kill me (or at least do serious irreversible damage to my kidneys and digestive system.)

If I put an ounce of Flex into a five-gallon bucket of water and drink it over a period of days, I will suffer NO ill effects. I won't even be able to taste it.

Dilution matters, people.
 

Mama Fen

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In an ideal world a single product with a zero rating across the board that's safe for any textile and can actually clean just about anything you throw at it would be ideal. I have't found such a thing in my close to 31 years now although I have seen some very good ones. I haven't tried a lot of the so called green products. I noticed some seem to have no better health rating that some of their non-green counterparts if I'm not mistaken. Pretty rare to see a health rating of 0 and no toxic or carcinogenic materials.
Randy, what's especially funny is how the word "organic" has been hijacked in multiple industries.

The actual definition of the word organic (as it applies to chemistry) is simply a chemical or chemical family that contains carbon - and by extension, is sourced from animal or vegetable origin. There is nothing about the word organic that implies safe or non-toxic.

Here's a handy little list of 100% organic compounds found in nature:

Rattlesnake venom
Skunk spray
Cat urine
Crude oil (YES!)
Fecal matter from any animal on the planet
Pus
Jellyfish venom
Monkey vomit
Lava
Slug slime




Wanna clean your carpet with those? ... why not? They're organic and all-natural!!!
 

Todd the Cleaner

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Randy, what's especially funny is how the word "organic" has been hijacked in multiple industries.

The actual definition of the word organic (as it applies to chemistry) is simply a chemical or chemical family that contains carbon - and by extension, is sourced from animal or vegetable origin. There is nothing about the word organic that implies safe or non-toxic.

Here's a handy little list of 100% organic compounds found in nature:

Rattlesnake venom
Skunk spray
Cat urine
Crude oil (YES!)
Fecal matter from any animal on the planet
Pus
Jellyfish venom
Monkey vomit
Lava
Slug slime




Wanna clean your carpet with those? ... why not? They're organic and all-natural!!!

LOL, I love it!
 

akleenerimage

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@rob allen may have to comment more on this, but from what I can tell you were NOT reading the health rating, but the ORAL toxicity rating of either a specific chemical or the concentrate. BIG difference! The actual health rating given on page 6 is a rating of 1. That is the rating of the finished product the way it comes to you for use. The oral toxicity rating of 5 probably means exactly what it appears to mean. You drink this particular chem and it will likely either kill you or do serious harm. I don't plan on drinking it myself. This is why they almost always recommend the use of PPE, particularly goggles and gloves when mixing these chems. Skin and Eye exposure should be avoided with just about any chem with very, very few exceptions. Again, I'd read this sds again. The section 2 is for the hazards, but page 6 (last page) is the Health ratings. I could be wrong about this. Just trying to help. I think I can safely say they don't want you to drink this stuff, get it in your eyes, or get it on your skin. After being diluted as much as we dilute it I doubt there is any real respiratory concern. It clearly should be kept out of reach of children like most other chems. For professional use only.

Btw, if I'm not mistaken and I'm pretty certain I'm not, there is no such thing at a health or flammability rating of 5. Four is the most dangerous. I wouldn't even touch something with a 4, period.

https://s3.amazonaws.com/tmfsds/biopro10k.pdf
So the ratings at the bottom that you were referring to as best I can tell are for the hmis which is a different rating system. I agree that I thought 4 was the highest but not not quite for sure what the 5 is for
 

Tom Forsythe

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One thing that is missing from the discussion of SDS is that they are written for the concentrate before dilution. The SDS does serve as an accurate assessment during shipping of the product and the mixing of the product. We have done some Ready to Use SDS for the actual dilution used in the cleaning which is what the cleaner and consumer come in contact. A lot of pre-sprays are diluted 1 to 32. In our pre-sprays that generally means that all raw materials are below 1% which is the standard line of disclosure on SDS. Rinses are diluted at 1 to 320 and 1 to 640 resulting in the raws being at .15 to .3 % strength. Generally, the solution to the hazard is dilution. However, the primary health concern for any chemical is the volatile component (solvent, fragrance, odor of some acids like acetic). High heat in the form of steam increases this volatility especially when cleaning stairs.

One other factor is the person, the nature and duration of exposure. Even if nail polish is used 100 feet from my presence in the house, my eyes start swelling. A hedge at a house I owned 20 years ago would also result in eye swelling every time that I trimmed it. Strong perfumes have cause me to change seating in restaurants. Yet I have worked in the lab with cleaning ingredients for almost 20 years without any issues.

Safe, non-toxic are terms that should not be used without significant third part testing (reported costs of $250,000.) Third party "green" organizations use safer which is the terminology we use. We have a safer rust remover when compared to others in the industry, but I still would not call it safe.
 

wandwizard

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So the ratings at the bottom that you were referring to as best I can tell are for the hmis which is a different rating system. I agree that I thought 4 was the highest but not not quite for sure what the 5 is for

Even if it were a health rating of 4 no way on earth I'd buy it. I don't even like to see a 2 for a prespray. Most of the ones I've looked at were a 1 and I've looked at numerous ones of varying brands over the years. Honestly, I'm not sure I trust all of them. If either I or even one of my customers ever has any problem with something I'm using it's a gonner and that has happened on a few occasions in my life. Twice I felt the chems were so unsafe that I never even used up the container, but both of those times were probably over 20 years ago. I believe manufacturers are probably under much stricter guidelines now than they were back then, particularly in the area of voc's.
 

Mama Fen

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LOL, I love it!
Granted, it's a little extreme. But it illustrates the point that claiming something is "all natural" or "organic" doesn't mean you should tout it as an improvement over synthesized compounds.

Paracelsus, who is considered the father of modern toxicology, once said "Everything is poison, there is poison in everything. Only the dose makes a thing not a poison."
 
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wandwizard

Randy Dockins
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Going green on preprays and perhaps rinses is probably doable I would think, but when you factor in stain removers I doubt if green is attainable. Well, unless you want to leave behind a WHOLE LOT of stains!
 

Mama Fen

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And I'll add this, and risk shaming some of you out there or making you mad at me:



The number one question I get, day in and day out, is not "how safe is it" or "is it all-natural" or even "does it work well".

Most guys only ask me - "HOW MUCH IS IT?"


So while it's easy for the carpet cleaning community as a whole to claim "oh, my customers' safety is my first concern!", I'm gonna call bullhockey on that one.

Not once in six years have I ever had a guy come in asking for the safest product to clean carpet with unless it was for a specific customer who requested such a thing, and man you should see the sighing and the eye-rolling while they're discussing that customer with me.

"This lady, oh boy lemme tell you, she's so hard to deal with... she wants all green and all safe and her kids are spoiled and I hate dealing with her but I said I'd do it, so..."



I can't imagine that this area is the only area in which a carpet cleaner's first concern is cost, nor can I imagine it's the only area where carpet cleaners don't even ASK about toxicity, SDS availability, or environmental impact.

If I call up @Tom Forsythe and insist that he make me a special product that is 100% non-toxic and eco-friendly even in its concentrated form, I know he'd do his level best to come up with one. And the raw materials would be expensive. I'd bring it in, and NO ONE WOULD BUY IT. Why? Because the usual sauce works better and costs half as much.
 

mustangcarpet

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Safer chems are important to us I’ve read tons on sds sheets of many cleaners and we use cleaners 0-1 on health scale. I am even selective on which chems I use to clean my bathrooms, counters, hair & body wash etc.
 

keep it clean

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These sds sheets are they speaking of direct out of the bottle or is that data after its mixed?
And all of them seem to have the skin irritant symbols. Best guess is to cover their own azz because they cant know who will or will not have a skin reaction to it.