Vapour degreasers make a comeback

Published: 4-Aug-2014

In the medical industry, device component cleaning is extremely important in ensuring the quality of device production. Vapour degreasers are re-emerging as the preferred option over aqueous cleaning systems, says Jay Tourigny, Senior Vice President, MicroCare Medical

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Up until about 15 years ago, vapour degreasing systems were the preferred method of cleaning because of their ease of use and highly effective cleaning performance. However, at that time, environmental concerns fuelled an industry-wide trend to switch from vapour degreasing systems – which back then used ozone-depleting chemicals – to aqueous-based cleaning systems. Although there were disadvantages to using the aqueous cleaning systems, the environmental issues linked to many cleaning solvents at that time outweighed many of the benefits of vapour degreasing systems.

Today, manufacturers and engineers are aware of the downfalls in aqueous cleaning systems and have a renewed interest in vapour degreasing cleaning systems. Advances in solvent technology are leading to environmentally acceptable cleaning options that also greatly minimise bioburden issues.

In fact, many manufacturers and engineers are discovering that a properly designed and maintained vapour degreaser can be more environmentally friendly than an aqueous-based cleaning system of similar capacity. Not only are they environmentally friendly, but they also remain the most effective cleaning process and an overall lower-cost option.

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