A contamination can be many things. When speaking about contaminated surfaces, or dirty surfaces, we mean grease, oil and soot. One of the properties of these contaminants is that they are ‘hydrofobic’, which means they are not soluble in water. Rinsing a contaminated surface with water will move the contaminants, but will not remove them. To remove contaminants a cleaner is required. To choose a suitable cleaner, it is important to understand how cleaners work. Use cleaners and degreasers from MAVRO for Efficient cleaning.
All cleaners have one common ingredient: surfactants (soap). Surfactants allow cleaners to remove the non-soluble contaminations from the surface.
There are many types of surfactants but they all have roughly the same function: ‘capturing’ contaminations. The principle of surfactants is a result of the structure of their molecules.
Surfactants all have a hydrophilic ‘head’ and a hydrophobic ‘tail’ and the shape of their structure can be compared to that of a tadpole.
The hydrophilic head loves water, while the hydrophobic tail repels water. When a surfactants is added to water, the hydrophobic tails will move away from the water. They do this by forming droplets called micelles, see image.
When a cleaner containing surfactants is applied to a contaminated surface, these micelles will stay intact. The hydrophobic contaminations, grease and oil, will spontaneously move to the inside of these droplets where they are contained by the also hydrophobic tails of the surfactant. Rubbing or wiping a surface during cleaning will increase the speed at which the contaminations move into the droplets.
When the contaminations are ‘captured’ inside the micelles, they can be easily washed from the surface. This is the principle of how cleaning works.
MAVRO has various professional cleaners:
All of these cleaners contain a combination of different surfactants to give the best possible cleaning power for all types of contaminations. They also contain various other ingredients which improve the cleaning power, surface wetting and other essential cleaning properties.
For mild contaminations and slightly greasy surfaces a neutral cleaner will be sufficient. A neutral cleaner is also best suited for delicate surfaces such as plastic and painted surfaces because they are unlikely to cause any damage to a surface. Neutral cleaners are also safer to use.
However, a neutral cleaner is often not powerful enough to clean harsh contaminations and greasy surfaces. An cleaner with a high pH is alkaline. Cleaners are made alkaline by adding ingredients such a potassium hydroxide or sodium hydroxide. Alkaline cleaners break down fats and oils which makes them easier to remove using surfactants.
Very strong contaminations and very caked-on grease requires even more powerful cleaners. UNICLEAN HIGH ALKALINE is the strongest degreaser in our assortment. A difference between pH = 12 and pH = 13 may seem small but on the pH-scale, this means that UNICLEAN HIGH ALKALINE is 10 times more alkaline.