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Author Topic: Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?  (Read 11771 times)

Juan

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Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« on: 12/05/2009 12:30:02 »
Juan asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Why is bleach (sodium hypochlorite) so good at cleaning things such as tile
surfaces, kitchen sinks etc?

What do you think?


 

Offline lightarrow

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Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #1 on: 12/05/2009 13:37:45 »
Juan asked the Naked Scientists:
   
Why is bleach (sodium hypochlorite) so good at cleaning things such as tile
surfaces, kitchen sinks etc?

What do you think?
Essentially for two reasons:
1. It's a basic solution, so it removes grease-oily dirt from the surface.
2. It's a strong oxidant so it destroyes thin organic matter as moulds and it bleaches dark ones.
 

Offline Chemistry4me

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Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #2 on: 13/05/2009 06:36:18 »
If my bleach is the same as your bleach then it is a good disinfectant and stain remover but not a great general cleanser.
 

Offline lightarrow

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Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #3 on: 13/05/2009 13:44:04 »
If my bleach is the same as your bleach then it is a good disinfectant and stain remover but not a great general cleanser.
Indeed. General cleanser is not at all. Probably the OP was talking about specific situations of dirt.
 

Offline Dina_F

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Re: Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #4 on: 02/11/2012 06:02:10 »
Many household products contain bleach. It is really an effective tool against stains and bacteria.  Bleach is generally for clothing and for disinfecting. However, that's not all. There are alternative uses for bleach that can save you money.

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« Last Edit: 02/11/2012 07:10:09 by CliffordK »
 

Offline damocles

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Re: Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #5 on: 03/11/2012 04:16:11 »
Many household products contain bleach. It is really an effective tool against stains and bacteria.  Bleach is generally for clothing and for disinfecting. However, that's not all. There are alternative uses for bleach that can save you money.

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However -- (chlorine-based) bleach used on clothing or any other organic material will shorten its lifetime. In particular it will slowly break down the carbon framework of the polymer molecules in carbohydrate (linen, cotton) or protein (wool, silk) based fibres
 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
« Reply #6 on: 03/11/2012 07:06:10 »
I did discover not to get too much pure bleach on my whites...  it makes horrible holes   [xx(]

Dilute bleach is supposed to be an excellent antimicrobial disinfectant for surface cleaning, with essentially no microbial resistance.
 

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Re: Why is bleach a good cleaning agent?
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