For All Chlorine Dioxide Applicators
The personal protection equipment (PPE) for anyone performing chlorine dioxide treatments is not onerous. Primarily, you will want to wear a mask capable of filtering VOC-type gases such as ozone and chlorine dioxide. During mixing, protect face, eyes, nose and mouth from splashes.
A good fitting gas-filtration mask is very smart for applicators. For obvious reasons, handling the concentrated product in tablet or powder form should be done with tools or gloves to protect hands. Chlorine dioxide is not a poison, but it may cause some problems when improperly handled.
On the positve side, chlorine dioxide is a close cousin to bleach; so understand that concentrated product are more hazardous than diluted products. The smell will remind you of bleach or a pool area chlorine smell. Hence, its value as a great sanitizing agent.
The EPA and Chlorine Dioxide (ClO2)
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) provides the following definition for chlorine dioxide (ClO2):
“Chlorine dioxide (ClO2) is an antimicrobial pesticide recognized for its disinfectant properties since the early 1900s. Chlorine dioxide kills microorganisms by disrupting transport of nutrients across the cell wall. Antimicrobial pesticides are substances used to control harmful micro-organisms including bacteria, viruses or fungi on inanimate objects and surfaces.
Chlorine Dioxide has been tested and proven to be the most effective tool in the odor removal industry today. It inhibits the growth of mold & mildew and eliminates odors from tobacco smoke, urine, fecal matter, skunk, rotten food to name a few.
Some Chlorine Dioxide Uses
Liquid chlorine dioxide formulations were registered in the 1960’s as disinfectants and are frequently used to control microorganisms on or around food products because it destroys the microorganisms without producing by-products that pose a significant risk to human health. Chlorine dioxide is used extensively as a bleaching agent in the paper industry, as a disinfectant agent for fruit and vegetable washing, poultry disinfection, food process equipment and sanitizing water. Chlorine dioxide is a common ingredient in mouth rinses for bad breath.
How CLO2 works
Chlorine Dioxide is an oxidizing biocide, not a metabolic poison. Chlorine dioxide kills microorganisms by disrupting the transport of nutrients across cell walls. In the case of bacteria, chlorine dioxide disrupts the synthesis of proteins and in the case of viruses, chlorine dioxide preferentially inactivates capsid functions.
It is about 7 times more effective in kill than regular chorine; however it breaks down into chlorite salts and water.
In the US, consumers spend $1.8 billion per year on deodorizers and fragrances. However, most products sold today are simply masking agents that cannot physically destroy odors. With few exceptions, the bulk of the products sold for consumer applications are based on scented formulations including fragrances and/or absorbent substances. Because there fragrances used are chemically just as bad as the odors that you want to cover up. When a room smells that good, it is too good to be true!
Why Choose Chlorine Dioxide?
Chlorine dioxide is a free radical compound. It breaks down on its own after its use in treatment; therefore, there is no need for removal after it has done the work you intended it to do. This property lowers its threat to human health and life if you don't remove the chemical after using it to clean and disinfect your house.
Chlorine Dioxide is not corrosive like other sanitizers.
Can organisms build up a resistance to Chlorine Dioxide?
It is not a metabolic poisons such as antibiotics that can lead to organism resistance, therefore building up a resistance is highly unlikely. With continued, sub-acute exposure, resistance is common. Chlorine Dioxide is however not a metabolic poison and no known resistance currently exists.
Is it Safe for Me to Use?
The Niagara Falls New York water treatment plant first used chlorine dioxide for drinking water disinfection in 1944. Currently, there are approximately 400 - 500 water treatment plants in the United States and over 1000 in Europe utilizing CLO2 to purify municipal drinking water systems. Numerous studies have shown chlorine dioxide, when used at the appropriate concentrations, has no adverse health effects, either by skin contact or ingestion.
When applied as either gas or liquid, chlorine dioxide does not stay around, it goes to work, does its job and when it is finished the gas breaks down into sodium ions and the liquid breaks down into salt and water.