Hard surface cleaners—used in kitchens, bathrooms, and on other surfaces—contain coupling solvents that are miscible in water and aid in removal of oily particles from the contaminated surface. The task of cleaning is made easier because the solvent encapsulates the oily particles, making them easier to lift from the soiled surface.
The most popular solvent for hard surface cleaning is ethylene glycol monobutyl ether (EGBE), manufactured and supplied as Eastman™ EB solvent. In November 2004, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) formally announced the delisting of this product from the Clean Air Act (CAA)
Amendments’ list of Hazardous Air Pollutants (HAPs). This action means that EGBE is not subject to the CAA’s Maximum Achievable Control Technology (MACT) requirements.
Other glycol ethers such as Eastman™ DB, Eastman™ EP, Eastman™ DP, and Eastman™ PM can also be used in aqueous systems for good cleaning efficiency.
Clean surfaces are important for good appearance and sanitation in homes, businesses, and institutions. Liquid spray, saturated nonwoven wipes and other methods of applying formulations containing coupling solvent and other chemical ingredients are helping to facilitate good cleaning practices.