Solvent Update

What are my replacement options?
–Joe McChesney

Q: If my company elects to use solvent degreasing by necessity or choice- what solvent process do you consider best for long term future?
A: Vacuum degreasing is the fastest growing solvent process on a global scale for replacing traditional halogenated solvents. The process is isolated from the operator/ambient area, provides low operational cost, meets environmental compliance, and ensures parts drying to eliminate solvent drag-out. There are many other benefits as well.
Q: Where can I find latest information on the existing solvent’s regulatory status?
A: The US EPA has a wide variety of sites to access based on the type of solvent you are using. You can also visit the EPA TSCA site for public info on all solvents listed.
Q: Will degreaser operators and any other personnel in the vicinity be subject to the recommended exposure limits?
A: Based on the statements contained in the latest July 2022 draft recommendations, it appears the rulings pertain to workers and occupational non-users (ONUs = ambient area personnel).
Q: What is the expected date when the new regulations will become law?
A: There are specific time frames as set by the EPA rules contingent upon the date of the published final risk evaluation. The industry expects these dates will be confirmed but the EPA can extend the time frame if required. I expect 2023 will confirm a timeline for various solvents.