What is that whiteish stuff on bad batteries (ruins stuff)?

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What, chemically, is that whiteish crumbly powder on bad batteries?
We all have seen it, and most of the time you can just brush it off, but I have it on a device deep inside that I can't get a brush on without breaking stuff.
I'd like to use a solvent (I already tried water but I want to do a better job) that dissolves the stuff so knowing the chemistry might help.
Do you have any idea what the chemical composition of that stuff is?
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On Thu, 13 Aug 2015 19:42:16 +0000, MNMikeW wrote:

It's a mixture of potassium hydroxide and potassium carbonate.
Check this article.
http://www.thenakedscientists.com/HTML/questions/question/1000207/
Thane
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On Thu, 13 Aug 2015 14:52:36 -0500, Thane wrote:

That was an interesting article, which also said that it could be a mixture of ammonium chloride and manganese dioxide in the comments.
It seems that lemon juice or vinnegar (ie weak acids) are the way to clean it up chemically, based on that article.
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On Fri, 14 Aug 2015 04:31:50 +0000, MNMikeW wrote:

I've used a Qtip dipped in tap water to remove the most of these deposits. Vinegar should be used cautiously as acids may attack the metals used in the battery contacts in the device you're trying to clean up.
Thane
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On 8/14/2015 10:02 AM, Thane wrote:

Vinegar is a mild acid, not much danger to metals. Rinse after, to remove the dissolved ionic solids.
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On 08/13/2015 12:42 PM, MNMikeW wrote:

Potassium Hydroxide - an alkaline (Alkaline batteries after all). Wash off with a mild solution (50/50) of white vinegar and water, scrub, and rinse with clean water carefully.
http://flippers.com/battery.html
John :-#)#
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On Thu, 13 Aug 2015 12:52:50 -0700, John Robertson wrote:

That article was nice, but I'm always suspicious when someone suggests idiotic things such as "pure water" (goes with "kosher salt" in my book, or with "organic eggs", etc.).
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On 08/13/2015 9:35 PM, MNMikeW wrote:

Oh, fine, then de-ionized distilled water if you want to get picky ;-).
It rarely makes much difference, at least for those of us who have rain water as our supply (mountain runoff). If you have well water then the alkalies in it could exacerbate the problem...
Consider that you have thin copper traces on your PCBs and they are made by etching a coating of copper film with an alkaline solution to generate the traces needed...you thus want to neutralize any alkaline remaining (so no more etching occurs) and a mild acid is pretty good at that. CLR works in a pinch...
John :-#)#
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On 08/13/2015 09:35 PM, MNMikeW wrote:

Yah, organic eggs, ROFLMAO!
Chickens fed GMO food (marinated in glyphosate) and tons of antibiotics are much better for your gut microbiome and autoimmune system. You'll be fine, just take your pharmaceuticals.
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| That article was nice, but I'm always suspicious when someone suggests | idiotic things such as "pure water" (goes with "kosher salt" in my book, | or with "organic eggs", etc.).
That's quite a lot to lump into one category. Are you sure your salt doesn't have "yellow prussiate of soda"? (cyanide salt) Do you really think it makes no difference what livestock eat? Where would you draw that line? If you don't care about such things then what is food?
There's a difference between being a ninny and being attentive. But I would agree about "pure water". That sounds like the menu item made from "Baby Yukon Gold tubers, fresh dairy milk, genuine Himalayan ghee and a trace of finest Italian parsley" -- mashed potatoes. :)
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On 8/13/2015 3:42 PM, MNMikeW wrote:

What kind of device that won't let you get near it?
Caig DeOxit might help. I got some for a 1/8 phono jack, and surprise surprise! Seems to help a lot. Might help with battery corrosion, also.
Ebay for about $15 shipped. Well worth it, in my case.
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On 8/13/2015 5:50 PM, Stormin Mormon wrote:

Caig DeOxit is the electronic technicians holy water.
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On Thu, 13 Aug 2015 19:54:43 -0400, Rachael Madcow wrote:

The MSDS didn't say what it's made of. Any idea?
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On Thu, 13 Aug 2015 17:50:27 -0400, Stormin Mormon wrote:

The MSDS is one of the most generic I have ever seen. http://www.xerox.com/downloads/usa/en/i/i5008.pdf
No telling what it's made of.
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On 8/14/2015 12:38 AM, MNMikeW wrote:

Cheers
Phil Hobbs
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Phil Hobbs wrote:

I don't think I have ever heard of an "organic acid". Any examples of mild organic acids you know of?
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On 8/14/2015 8:05 AM, Steven Bornfeld wrote:

Citric, or ascorbic.
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On 8/14/2015 8:05 AM, Steven Bornfeld wrote:

Stearic acid, oleic acid,....
Cheers
Phil Hobbs
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snipped-for-privacy@electrooptical.net says...

deoxyribonucleic acid... (Not sure about the "mild", though!)
Mike.
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On Fri, 14 Aug 2015 04:32:56 -0400, Phil Hobbs

Before DioxIT, it was Cramolin. Both concoctions had an assortment of formulations and a checkered history. Both have also been cloned at various times. The acid involved is oleic acid, which is food safe and is used in a variety of cosmetic potions and nostrums: <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oleic_acid <http://www.ebay.com/sch/i.html?_nkw=oleic+acid However, there were some problems. If it wasn't wiped off, it would slowly attack copper and brass contacts. This was deemed a bad thing and the oleic acid was removed from the formulations leaving only mineral oil and no weak acid. Cramolin MSDS: <http://store.caig.com/core/media/media.nl?id 8&cCT113328&h?8d8512c835e9a69f64&whence=> The MSDS for Caig DeoxIT is listed as a trade secret concoction but is generally presumed to be the same as Cramolin. If this is correct, then using DeoxIT to "clean" battery contacts just coats the contacts with a layer of mineral oil.
Caig has a large selection of cleaners and lubes, many of which contain some manner of unspecified oxide remover available. That would be quite suitable if we were removing an oxide. Assuming an alkaline battery, the white residue is mostly potassium carbonate (K2CO3) and some potassium hydroxide (KOH) electrolyte. Just about any acidic cleaner will remove that. I use 409 household cleaner and smear it around with an acid brush. You can tell it's working by the foam and bubbles produced. When the white crud has been removed, just wipe it clean. Both chemicals are soluble in water, so you don't really need an acid, but I like to see the foam and bubbles. After that, smearing the contacts and PCB with mineral oil (DeoxIT) does nothing useful becaue the contacts don't need a lube job.
The history of Cramolin, DeoxIT, ProGold, etc. <http://www.siber-sonic.com/electronics/caig.html The topic appears quite often in the antique radio forums: <http://www.antiqueradios.com/forums/search.php Plug "DeOxit" into the search box.
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