Galvanizing 106

Galvanizing 106


As noted in the last commentary, tanks with either sodium hydroxide (aka caustic or an alkaline degreaser) or phosphoric or other acid (acid degreaser) are the two most common cleaning solutions for North American galvanizers.  We’ll talk a bit about acid degreasing in this note.

Acidic Degreasing – Phosphoric-based

As the name implies, acidic degreasing is done using chemicals that have a low pH, below pH of 7.  The issue with acid-side cleaning is that strong acids like hydrochloric or sulfuric are poor at lifting soil from the surface of the incoming steel.  To combat this, most stand-alone acid degreasers use a different acid, phosphoric acid, as the base for the cleaning.  It is not great on its own, though, and so a number of components are added in a very complex balance to get the best cleaning results. 

Hydronet, the acidic degreaser from Zaclon, is such a balanced effective degreaser.  Based on phosphoric acid, it has additives to lift soils, greases, oil, and convert them into a “sand” that settles to the bottom of the tank.  In doing this, due to the acid, it also opens up the “cracks” in the rust/scale layer on the steel, and jump-starts the process of pickling (rust removal).  By doing this settling, much less oil and grease is suspended in the liquid, or floating on top of the tank…this contamination would be carried over into the next tanks. 

Most of the phosphoric-based cleaners have pH around 2, with very similar acid levels to a soda such as a cola.  This makes them relatively safe to handle vs. a caustic degreaser.  Many also will work at cooler temperatures than a caustic; the Hydronet approach operates best at about 90 F, but can effectively clean (though more slowly) even at 60 F. 

There are also some products that are additives for the actual pickling tanks to help with oils and greases there; we will talk about those in the next blog.


Most Recent

Galvanizing 108

By Robert Woods
May 07, 2021 Category: Galvanizing

BLOG 8-Robert M. Woods RINSING after DEGREASING So, now the soils are removed for the surface of the work---but there may still be a layer of chemical sticking to it. IF this is coming out of a caustic bath, a direct movement into an acid pickling tank, the layer can actually neutralize some of the acid, wasting it. IF this is coming from an acidic cleaner such as Hydronet, there is no neutralization; but any Hydronet remaining on the surface is also wasted. To remedy these issues, most operations will have a rinse tank after the degreasing tank, either caustic or acid-type. For the acid-type, the rinse can be used to make up for any drag-out or evaporation of the degreasing tankany dragged out degreaser is put back into the degreasing tank. For the caustic-type, the same make up occurs; and the rinse will prevent much of the neutralization of the following acid tank. Control of a rinse tank then makes economic and process sensesaving the more expensive chemicals and keeping subsequent

Zaclon is Born

By Jim Krimmel
April 27, 2021 Category: History

Zaclon is Born! Inspired by the concept of operating DuPonts Cleveland Plant as a standalone small business, the MTP (Management Training Process) team turned its attention to determining what that really meant and how far DuPont would go to implement the concept. The team determined that three key elements which could led to success were: Hiring their own sales force. Incentivizing all employees through a profit sharing and bonus plan. Shedding DuPont corporate overhead costs related to numerous corporate mandates and objectives. Armed with these needs, Joe Turgeon (Product Manager), Stu Schenk (Cleveland Plant Manager), and Jim Krimmel (Cleveland Operations Manager) traveled to Wilmington Delaware to convince DuPont management of these needs and to present the resulting economic projections for the Cleveland plant. The team met with limited success. Sales Force - The MTP team felt strongly that the sales effort being put forth by the DuPont marketing division was too diluted and

Galvanizing 107

By Robert Woods
April 21, 2021 Category: Galvanizing

BLOG 7-Robert M. Woods Last blog was discussing a pure acid degreasing approach, using Phosphoric-acid based product such as Hydronet Base, Ricarica, and S. There is another approach that can be used in some cases, with additives directly into the pickling acid tanks. Hydronet D is the name of our product that can be added directly into Hydrochloric acid tanks at the typical concentrations and temperatures used by North American galvanizers. Acidic Degreasing in the pickle tank Without help, Hydrochloric and Sulfuric acids are not very effective at removing dirt. Hydrochloric acid in particular is poor at lifting greases, oils, chalk, and most other soils. Sulfuric is a little better, but more because it is heated AND attacks scale and rust by blowing off the top layers of rust IF it can penetrate the cracks in the scale. Generally, degreasing with an additive in the pickle tanks is not as effective as a stand-alone tank with SB Clean-Caustic or Hydronet Base or S; however, for

Zaclon is a manufacturer of specialty chemicals with wide applications and world-wide sales. We are based in Cleveland, OH. Learn More →


Contact Us →

All Rights Reserved Zaclon LLC ©