Sodablasting Facts

 In addition to coating and paint removal soda blasting is the conclusive answer to difficult cleaning problems.  Delicate fixtures and glass cannot be sandblasted or media blasting because of etching.  A concrete floor inside of a house, office or apartment may require the use of dangerous solvents, which may cause a health hazard to occupants nearby.

Soda blasting is environmentally friendly, and uses a substance that everyone is familiar with - sodium bicarbonate (baking soda). The Natrium Soda Blast Media we use is a FOOD GRADE product.

Cleaning & Stripping

Standard abrasive blasting is a dirty process, often loading and even embedding the surface with contaminants (grease, oil, tar and abrasive particles) in the process of removing the coating.  Recycled abrasives compound this problem by loading increasing amounts of contaminants into the substrate.  Soda blast media effectively strips and cleans the substrate in one step, producing a level of surface cleanliness not seen with most processes.  The media is not reusable, thus eliminating the issue of  contamination by blasting with recycled media.

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Unique Cutting Action

Soda blast media offers the unique properties of sodium bicarbonate, the primary ingredient. The softness (Mohs Hardness Scale =2.4) and friable nature of this crystal produces a unique cutting action with little or no effect on most substrates. For example, thick coatings can be removed from glass without any etching effect. With proper care, delicate substrates can be cleaned without damage.

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No Pre-Cleaning

For projects where the coating is covered with grease, carbon, salt or other contaminants, the more traditional blasting methods require the coating to be fully cleaned before blasting. This is required so that the contaminants on the surface of the coating not be driven through the coating and into the surface of the substrate, causing future coating failure.

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No Re-Profiling of Metals
Standard grades of soda media (without any hard aggregates) do not profile steel. When an operator removes a coating from a metal surface, he or she exposes the existing anchor pattern under the coating. Unless corrosion has occurred, there is no reason to re-profile the surface.

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Reduces Solid Waste

Soda blast media can be dissolved in fresh water. By dissolving the media and filtering out the contaminants the solution can generally be discharged to P.O.T.W. treatment systems or open waterways, with proper discharge permits. Waste volume is generally reduced to less than 5% of the original waste volume. With increasing landfill costs and liabilities, this advantage becomes more important everyday.

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Natural Rust Inhibitor

As long as soda is on a ferrous metal surface, rust will not form. For rust to form, free moisture and an acidic conditions must exist. In most cases, free moisture combines with carbon dioxide in the atmosphere to form carbonic acid. This acid releases a free metal (ferrous) ion which combines with oxygen (oxidizes) to form rust. Soda buffers acids and prevents the release of free metal ions and prevents rust.

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Reduces Surface Acids

As a strong buffer for acids and alkalis, soda eliminates acidic conditions on the surface of the substrate. For conditions with high acidic levels, acid rain or boiler fly ash, blasting with soda will reduce coating failures.

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Cost-Effective Cleanup

Soda blast media performs roughly the same level of work (somewhat slower) as sand blasting while producing 1/7 of the total waste volume. Although media costs per square foot are higher, site clean-up and residue disposal are significantly lower. The net balance is that total cost per square foot is about the same for both approaches.

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Benefits to Wastewater Treatment Systems

In most non-hazardous applications, the residue from soda blasting can be rinsed into sanitary drains or sewers which flush the residue to a water treatment facility, greatly reducing clean-up time. Sodium bicarbonate is actually beneficial to waste water treatment systems. For industrial treatment systems, where chemical neutralization is a major cost in water treatment, soda blast media can often save significant dollars in waste treatment.

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NaHCO3 is Not an Irritant

The safety of sodium bicarbonate to workers is well understood, since it has been in use for some 160 years. The bicarbonate buffer system is the major extra cellular buffer in the human body, thus sodium bicarbonate is part of the body’s normal chemistry. Sodium bicarbonate is not toxic via ingestion, inhalation or dermal contact, nor is it a skin or eye irritant as defined by E.P.A. and O.S.H.A. Any risk to workers is primarily the containment or coating removed during the blasting operation. Soda blasting can help reduce or remove unfriendly odors while removing contaminants.

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Uses No Dangerous Solvents

Soda formula is an excellent de-greasing media that eliminates the uses of solvents in most cleaning processes. Soda does not “dissolve” or “emulsify” grease and oils, it simply coats them causing the grease or oil to release from the surface. It also eliminates the trans-location of oil and grease.

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Safer to Use Around Flammable Vapors & Fluids

Standard grades of soda blast media ( without hard aggregate) will not produce thermal sparks and are suitable for use in explosion proof areas: including refineries, chemical plants and grain elevators as long as proper grounding techniques are used to prevent a static charge build-up.

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Finds Surface Flaws Easier

When cleaning metal surfaces for crack detection, standard abrasive blasting tends to peen the crack closed or pack the crack with abrasive, making crack detection more difficult. Soda media actually cleans out the crack, leaving it exposed and easy to find.

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Cleaner Surfaces in Small Passageways

Standard grades of soda blast media (without hard aggregate) are 100% water soluble. They can be used to clean critical engine components including those with small passageways. Once cleaned, the soda residue can be thoroughly rinsed off by dissolving in water. Traditional blast media are not water soluble and if left after cleaning, can pack into small passageways and possibly damage an engine while in operation.

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Nutech Refinishing, Inc.

Jefferson, GA

Sodablasting Service - Sodablasting Equipment Sales

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