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Hydrochloric Acid uses are many and varied, both in industry and domestically where, as a strong, organic mineral acid, it is one of the most widely used.
Industrial Hydrochloric Acid uses include steel manufacturing, food preparation, the manufacture of PVC and many uses in the chemical industry. Hydrochloric Acid uses in the food industry include canning processes and the manufacture of corn syrups for soft drinks. Hydrochloric Acid uses in the steel industry include its 'pickling' effect on metal which effectively cleans up rusty metal. Hydrochloric Acid uses also include brick cleaning and concrete etching in the building industry, whilst it is used in dilute form for swimming pool maintenance. Domestic Hydrochloric Acid uses can be found in many household cleaning products.
As a 'Corrosive' substance Hydrochloric Acid can present a number of potential hazards including serious burns to skin and eyes, with the risk of causing permanent damage. Inhalation of the vapours can cause damage to the respiratory system and breathing difficulties, whislt ingestion can cause severe burns to the mouth, throat and gastro-intestinal tract.
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) should always be worn when handling or working with Hydrochloric Acid. This should include protective clothing, gloves, footwear and approved eye protection. Hydrochloric Acid should be used in a well-ventilated area and breathing apparatus should be used where fumes are created.
Hydrochloric Acid is also known as Muriatic Acid or HCl. It can be produced in a concentration of between 36% and 40%, when it is commonly known as 'Fuming' Hydrochloric Acid, 'Fuming' Muriatic Acid or 'Fuming' HCl. The word 'Muriatic' literally translates as 'pertaining to salt or brine' and this reflects the early origins of production, when Vitriol or Sulphuric Acid was mixed with common Salt to produce Hydrochloric Acid.
Hydrochloric Acid produces hazardous reactions with a number of substances; for example, it reacts with metals to produce Hydrogen gas. Hydrochloric Acid reacts with Sodium Hydroxide to produce heat; this process is known as 'exothermic'. Hydrochloric Acid reacts with Ammonia to produce dense fumes of Ammonium Chloride.
Hydrochloric Acid is often diluted with water to produce a less concentrated form of acid. Care must be taken when using Hydrochloric Acid as it will attack varnish, fabrics, plastics and most paints. Hydrochloric Acid containers must be kep away from heat sources as they will pressurise if exposed to heat. Although Hydrochloric Acid is not classified as Hazardous from an environmental perspective, it will affect the pH of water, thereby causing potential damage to aquatic organisms.
http://www.hydrochloric-acid.co.uk/hydrochloric-acid-uses | Saved Friday, November 18th, 2011 - 5:35 AM