Can I use 91% isopropyl alcohol to clean vinyl?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Veech, Oct 4, 2021.

  1. Veech

    Veech Space In Sounds Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Printed for reference. I really appreciate your detailed explanation of this process. My Clean Sweep record brush arrived yesterday so I can follow this process exactly as you described.

    I tested our RO water last night and it's at 11 TDS ppm. The distilled water I bought tested at 0 TDS ppm. I really wonder if there is any significant difference between using the RO water and the distilled.

    Out of curiosity, what enhancements do you suggest? Thanks.
     
  2. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Per my book:

    VII.1 The use of tap-water (drinking water) for the pre-rinse and rinse after each cleaning agent application is acceptable because while tap-water will have dissolved solids, the amount of insoluble particulate (suspended solids) is low. The occasional larger particles are removed by the faucet aerator that has a fine mesh strainer and tap-water is cheap and readily available in quantity. Additionally, tap-water is used only in a flowing stream that assists with particle and cleaning agent removal. Additionally, the ratio of tap-water volume to the cleaner being diluted/removed is very high eliminating any adverse reactions. Furthermore, once the cleaning process starts, the record is maintained wet throughout until the final spray with DIW, so there is no risk of dissolved solids (minerals) residue.

    VII.2 Otherwise, for tap-water, there can be confusion between total dissolved solids (TDS), total suspended solids (TSS) and turbidity. The EPA 2018 Edition of the Drinking Water Standards and Health Advisories Tables (14) has TDS limits as noted Table IV, but no TSS limits because TSS are captured in the turbidity limit which includes suspended sediments, finely divided organic and inorganic compounds, plankton, and other microscopic organisms. The EPA turbidity limit is 5 nephelometric turbidity units (NTUs), and by some literature that has compared TSS to turbidity, a relationship of TSS being equal to about two times NTU can exist. Therefore, tap/drinking water TSS should not be greater than about 10 mg/L (~10 ppm); and by visual observation particle size is well below visible.
     
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  3. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Yes. One item to note, when preparing an IPA/Triton mix using concentrated Triton you want to 1st add the Triton and then add the IPA; it helps speed up the Triton dissolving.
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2021
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  4. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    As far as the RO 11 ppm vs DIW <1ppm, the RO at 11 ppm is just borderline classified as Purified water. The residue film thickness will be thicker - see Table V of the book, but with DIW so cheap and you are not using much, you really want that last rinse step as good as practical (without going to the extreme and $$$ of ultra-pure) to account for uncertainty with your TDS device.

    A far as enhancement:

    With the label protector use Liquinox at 1% (10 ml/L or Qt) for pre-clean, tap-water rinse and then final-clean with the IPA/Triton tap-water rinse, RO spray rinse, then final Rinse DIW and dry with your VPI as I wrote above.

    The Liquinox is a fairly aggressive (safe for the record) surfactant blend cleaner and makes an excellent pre-cleaner - people who use it for that purpose are generally very satisfied. @r.Din wrote on another site - "Liquinox is a big step up. More listening done today and every record, even damaged ones with their own noise issues, sound much cleaner overall - the noise floor is lowered allowing more music detail through. Very pleased.".

    Since you now have the Triton no need to buy the Tergitol. All reputable chemical companies will put a shelf life date that is 2-yrs from manufacture. That does not mean it is going to shelf destruct after 2-yrs. The shelf life of the Triton kept sealed when not in-use and stored at normal room temperature is many-many years.

    Good Luck,
     
  5. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Neil (@pacvr), I've searched your book but can't find anything.

    I was recently "gifted" records stored in a damp basement (25 years?) and dealing with paper sleeves that have become one with the grooves.

    The 91% alcohol wipe is working okay. Helps with the smell too.

    But, would adding anything to the alcohol loosen the paper faster?

    I know it is paper because I can see it after a play, the needle is depositing it on the surface for me. Takes a few iterations though. The imprinted inner sleeves using coated paper are the worst of the lot but only a few of them.

    I'd be willing to introduce some sort of detergent and rinse that off later with my Deep Groove basin cleaner.

    So far wiping and playing actually seems to work best for me, the soaking in the Deep Groove basin cleaner doesn't seem to help a ton, still requires multiple iterations.
     
  6. lazydawg58

    lazydawg58 Know enough to know how much I don't know

    Location:
    Lillington NC
    Great! I'll remember that next time I make up a batch.
     
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  7. lazydawg58

    lazydawg58 Know enough to know how much I don't know

    Location:
    Lillington NC
    Questions for you Neil. I'm committed to the Triton as my basin cleaning mix at least until I finish that gallon which isn't even half used up. But y9u mention the Liquinox as a pre-cleaner. I've added a step since I made the video I posted earlier. I spray cleaner and scrub with a painter pad before starting the basin cleaning now, at least with used records.
    1. Would I benefit from switching from my existing cleaning solution in the sprayer to the Liquinox? (just for the painter pad cleaning)
    2. If so would it hurt anything to go directly from this to the basin of my triton based cleaner for the next step? (not rinsing or vacuuming it off first)
    3. Would this Liquinox mix be just distilled water and Liquinox? How much Liquinox in a gallon mixture?

    Thanks, Elliott
     
  8. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Phil,

    You will need to soak the record with periodic agitation - not much different than removing a label from a container. There are enzymes specific to dissolving cellulous (the paper base) - Cellulase; but with enzymes there is the lock & key analogy where the enzyme key needs to fit the soil lock otherwise they do not work; so going down this route is pure hit or miss.

    So first try on one record some liquid Laundry detergent Tide CPID (whatsinproducts.com) or equal (use good stuff, the cheaper stuff has a lot of junk) - mix to get about a 0.5 to 1 % solution = 5 to 10 mL/L. For this experiment - you can try tap-water. Laundry detergents have an ingredient to prevent tap water TDS from interfering. Laundry detergents have enzymes along with surfactants and other stuff, and rinse fairly well. Let it soak for at least an hour and brush to see if the paper has has loosened. Warm (not hot) water ~100F will help. You are trying to get the paper to absorb moisture and swell and we all seen what paper becomes left in washed clothes. Once the paper is swollen, now you have chance of getting if off.

    Keep me advised

    Neil
     
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  9. Veech

    Veech Space In Sounds Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Ima try this..



    WD40. Who knew? :laugh:
     
  10. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Elliot,

    Yes - switching to add Liquinox 0.5 to 1% solution with DIW (5-10mL/L or ~1.5-3 oz/Qt - close enough) as the spray-on pre-cleaner would benefit the process. I really like the Amazon.com: Record Doctor Clean Sweep Brush : Electronics for hand wash. Mine has cleaned 100's of records and is till going strong.

    The Record Doctor™ Clean Sweep Brush with clusters of 0.05 milli-meter (0.002”) wide Nylon bristles (260,000 bristles total) or the OSAGE™ Nylon record brush with 0.004” wide Nylon bristles should not deeply penetrate the record groove - no risk for damage Additionally, Nylon absorbs water and softens during use (but returns to original properties once dry). Furthermore, the bristle width is near equal to the top width of the record groove and along with the length when combined with the low surface tension of the Alconox™ Liquinox cleaning solutions form a hydraulic wedge to force the cleaner deep into the groove. The back-and-forth brushing action then develops the fluid agitation necessary to deeply scrub/clean/flush the groove. The Liquinox foams which mostly collects in the brush which is good since that helps to lift soil from the record.

    But, you must rinse the Liquinox otherwise too much will carryover to your basin. The Liquinox rinses very easily and a simple tap-water rinse will work fine. Under a flowing water rinse you will observe that the water will run off the record very quickly and almost completely - it does not bead-up much at all, so you can then move to your basin. If you spray rinse, water will bead up on the record.

    Good Luck,
    Neil
     
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  11. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Label is right!

    Wife had Krud Kutter concentrate left over from a sticker removing project, I was going to try that in the Deep Groove tank but I'll try Tide instead.

    Thanks I'll let you know.
     
  12. lazydawg58

    lazydawg58 Know enough to know how much I don't know

    Location:
    Lillington NC
    Great, thanks! Can I just vacuum after scrubbing and then go to the basin? That would eliminate the carryover to the basin for the most part.
     
  13. Veech

    Veech Space In Sounds Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    I need a sprayer and am going to empty one that has a 50/50 mix of white vinegar and water. This got me thinking, is vinegar OK to use to clean vinyl?
     
  14. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    If this is the Krud Kutter KK0010001-Original-Krud-Kutter-concentrated-Cleaner-gb.pdf (krudkutter.eu), its nothing more than a simple very alkaline (almost caustic) non-ionic surfactant cleaner, pH is 12.45.
     
  15. quicksrt

    quicksrt Senior Member

    Location:
    City of Angels
    I stay away from anything remotely harsh or acidic.
     
  16. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Try it. If you see too much foam in the basin, add a spray rinse and then vacuum before going to the basin.
     
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  17. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
  18. pacvr

    pacvr Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    The answer is yes but it needs to be modified and there are caveats.. Distilled white vinegar (DWV) will not harm the record but it will not 'wet' the record, so it needs to be modified so that it will - adding some of your 10% Triton X100 to DWV can reduce the surface tension of the DWV to make it useable. You can also prepare a 50%-IPA/25%DWV/25% DIW solution to use and @Phil Thien has a procedure for that type of use. DWV is unique - its a weak acid, its acetic acid that is fermented from ethanol and is also known as ethanolic acid and it's very pure with almost no non-volatile residue (NVR); so with @Phil Thien procedure where he allows it just evaporate it can work, otherwise DWV rinses easily and is cheap and readily available.

    However, some background to understand why you 'may' want to use a weak acid. As I wrote on another thread noting that I use a 10W UV light Alonefire SV005 10W LED 365nm UV Flashlight Blacklight Portable USB Rechargeable Black Light Full Metal Case Pet Urine Detector with UV Protective Glasses, 18650 Battery Included for Resin Curing - - Amazon.com for post inspection after cleaning.

    Even with pre-clean with Alconox Liquinox and final clean with Tergtiol 15-S-9 I 'had' some records that after cleaning still showed fluorescence as just pin-points of light and played noisy. After further research it occurred to me that what I am seeing as ref PACVR 2nd Ed Chapter/para IV.6 & Figure 10 is very tightly adherent non-organic/mineral based particles. These type particles are natural to the environment; known as aerosols Lecture25.pdf (gatech.edu) and while very small there is a significant amount between 0.5 and 1 microns and if these conglomerate - larger particles are generated . So its entirely feasible that these particle 'may' be in the ambient of record pressing factories (except maybe QRP - http://www.qualityrecordpressings.com/i ... =standards which appear pressed in a very clean environment); and can be essentially be pressed into the record. These type particles are not going to be easily removed even if just on the surface. "XII.6.a ...the smaller the particle the more difficult it is to remove from the surface,.... The paper Adhesion and Removal of Fine Particles on Surfaces, Aerosol Science and Technology, M. B. Ranade, 1987 (38) shows for aluminum oxide particles, the force (acceleration) required to remove a 10-micron particle is 4.5 x 10^4 g’s, a 1-micron particle is 4.5 x 10^6 g’s and a 0.1-micron particle is 4.5 x 10^8 g’s." A simple brush or wipe is not going to get these smallest particles/debris that can ‘hide’ in the valleys between the groove side wall ridges.

    Carbonates fluoresce intensely white and noting that I do inspect records with a 10 watt UV light, it now occurred to me that the intense white specs that I am seeing on 'some' records may be inorganic salts/minerals. And, this debris that fluoresces intensely is not removed by multiple detergent washes and multiple rinses (with brush & flowing water). However, a weak acid can dissolve mineral type particles, especially very small (<5 microns) particles that can dissolve quickly.

    So after pre-clean with Alconox Liquinox I now do a pre-clean with Alconox Citranox mixed at 1.5% Amazon.com: Alconox 1832 Citranox Phosphate-Free Concentrated Cleaner and Metal Brightener, 1 quart Bottle : Health & Household . I spray-on and gently agitate with Record Dr. nylon brush for 1-2 minutes and then rinse. The results are good to excellent. The Citranox is relatively weak citric acid (a bit stronger than DWV) with surfactants. Alconox Citranox can not be used with @Phil Thien solvent evaporation procedure - lots of residue will result.

    I first started acid cleaning with DWV, but was to not completely happy with the results or the odor and switched to Citranox. After the Liquinox/Citranox pre-cleaning, I final clean Tergitiol 15-S-9 (you can substitute Triton X100) and rinse. The Citranox does not foam as much as the Liquinox, and yes you want to 1st use the Liquinox to degrease the surface to expose the particles underneath. My final clean with a simple nonionic surfactant is to make sure there is no pre-cleaner residue. Although my procedure sounds complicate - its really quite simple and it takes about 6-7 minutes for the cleaning; but it is a manual procedure.

    Pre-Clean Alconox Liquinox 1% spray bottle
    Tap-water rinse
    Pre-Clean Alconix Citranox 1.5% spray bottle
    Tap water rinse
    Final Clean Tergitol 15-S-9 (Triton X100 can be substituted) spray bottle
    Tap water rinse
    DIW spray rinse
    Dry.

    Note do not use any acid with the vacuum RCM or you will corrode them. Acids should be used for manual cleaning only.

    As they say, the Devil in the Details, and when it comes to cleaning a record there are many different paths. Ultrasonic cleaning may do what the acid can do with those small nearly embedded particles. Otherwise, there is no 'the' way, and there is no best way other than the one best for you.

    Good Luck
    Neil
     
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  19. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    I gotta give you props for the detailed help you give others.
    :righton:
     
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  20. Veech

    Veech Space In Sounds Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    Reporting on my first attempt at this new cleaning process. I'm using a real beater, dirty with multiple fingerprints.

    The Groovmaster label protector works like a champ. On one side of the LP it seems to just barely overlap the final rotation or two of the last song.

    My cleaning solution mix resulted in very few suds, almost none at all. I may add a drop or two of the 12.5% Triton mix to the quart of cleaner.

    @pacvr Neil, I tried to leave moisture on the LP on the last step but the cloth soaked up almost all of it and when I went to vacuum on the RCM almost nothing extracted. Is this an issue?

    I can definitely see a visible difference although on one side there are still fingerprints. Still, the vinyl has a decent glossy sheen now. A big improvement over my initial RCM cleaning using my old process. I'm going to repeat the process and see what happens.
     
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  21. Veech

    Veech Space In Sounds Thread Starter

    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    @pacvr never mind, I see that the final step is to rinse with DIW on the RCM. Missed that part.
     
  22. Nephrodoc

    Nephrodoc Forum Resident

    The best results I’ve obtained with my RCM(16.5) is Liquinox as the initial step, Tergikleen as a second step, followed by 2 distilled water rinses. This process give me results comparable to my DIY ultrasonic with much less work.

    As an aside, I’m a medical director of a dialysis facility and oversee the water quality. We use RO in this application because it can keep up with demand, no way a still could do that. The medical grade RO water usually reads 2-3 ppm while the distilled water I buy is always 0 ppm.
     
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  23. Oelewapper

    Oelewapper Plays vinyl instead of installing it on the floor.

    ...and time to close the thread! :p
    The easiest way to find if a material can be used with certain things like alcohols is by looking up the chemical compatibility chart of the material.
    In the case of PVC with Isopropyl alcohol it says excellent compatibility.
    Those charts are just facts... saves a lot of time filtering the nonsense, which is especially common with subjects like record cleaning.

    However, I would prefer using 99.9% instead of 91% to make sure no residue will be left once the isopropyl alcohol dried.
     
  24. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Isn't 91% just alcohol and water?
     
  25. Oelewapper

    Oelewapper Plays vinyl instead of installing it on the floor.

    Yes it should, but it’s not certain when ingredients are not specified on the bottle.
    Would be fine for random household cleaning IMO, but not for cleaning expensive records.
    If I clean records, I want to know exactly what I’m putting onto my records.
     

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