I do not have answers. But I do have questions.
As I read about this chemical, I think potassium percarbonate may be
useful for hydroponics. It seems like it could be useful for sterilizing
growing media and containers. At the same time, instead of contaminating
the containers with sodium, it could provide potassium as a plant
Does anyone have comments on this.
An old man would be better off never having been born.
Nestor Kelebay wrote:
So far as antifungal properties goes, I'd put my money on Borax (which is
not a carbonate at all). Borax is a sodium/boron/H2O compound that, like
gypsum or lime, takes on various crystalline structures depending on the
amount of water bound up inside of it. It is the Boron itself that is
effective as an antifungal agent. This is why borates are commonly used
as wood preservatives in the form of "Impel" or "Cobra" rods and the
assortment of "Borocol" liquid based wood preservatives. Borate based
Impel rods are commonly used in log homes to protect the logs from wood
rot because of the very high solubility of borates in water. It is this
high water solubility that allows borate based wood preservatives to
permeate the entire log by diffusing through the moisture within the log.
Even though it is only a small number of fungii that feed on wood, borates
are effective against a wide variety of fungii, including the wood rot
fungii. But, they are of almost no health concern to mammals, and borate
based products are even allowed as food additives in some European
So far as an antibacterial agent is concerned, I'd opt for bleach there.
Bleach is sodium hypochlorite, or NaOCl. It's actually made from sea
water, and is unstable enough that it gradually decomposes back into sea
water, even when it's being stored in the jug. Thus, bleach gradually
decomposes and gets weaker. In so doing, it releases lone Oxygen atoms,
and it's these oxygen atoms that do all the work. They are highly
reactive, and react with organic molecules that are generally less stable
than inorganic molecules. It is through the same process of decompostion
to form more stable compounds that ozone (O3) and hydrogen peroxide (HOOH)
also have a "bleaching" action on colored fabrics, organic smells and hair
colour. Since the released lone Oxygen atoms react with organic
molecules, bleach is very effective at killing bacteria, viruses, molds
and fungii, and breaking up organic molecules into smaller pieces thereby
removing the colour and smell they produce.
I don't know anything about the sodium percarbonate you mentioned.
Hope this helps.
..in solidarity with the movement for change in Iran.
Borax is fungistatic and bateriostatic. I don't know if it kills them,
but it keeps them from growing. At room temperature, one or two
teaspoons of borax can be dissolved in a quart of water. If I use it to
wash a surface with mildew and don't rinse it, the mildew won't return.
If I had fabric that I wanted to protect from fungi or bacteria, I'd
wash it, then dip it in a bucket with borax and water before spinning
and drying. Miners don't seem to have problems from exposure to borax,
so I don't think a trace of it in fabric would caused skin irritation.
Sodium percarbonate is a powder containing sodium carbonate and hydrogen
peroxide. Oxiclean is a brand name. I can get it much more cheaply in
a store brand labeled something like "oxygen bleach" or "color-safe
bleach." The cheaper stuff contains additives to help it work better at
Bleach can kill spores. That would eliminate growth that originates in
the fabric but wouldn't keep the fabric from being infected.
Where we live, our towels tend to stink after a couple of days in the
laundry hamper in summer, and it doesn't go away with washing. About
every two months, we add about 1/4 cup bleach to the wash water. Mix
in a bucket first. It's too little to harm the colors, but knocks out
the fungi that cause the smell. The towels will then go several
washings before fungi build up again.
It's probably best I rephrase my original post.
If I'm looking for a strictly non-bleaching laundry additive that has
strong antifungal and antibacterial properties, which is the better of
Borax (sodium borate decahydrate)
Products containing sodium percarbonate?
I know bleach is the best, but I'm looking for something that can be
used with various coloured fabrics.
I am not really with you on this one dear, Sodium percarbonate IS a bleach,
an oxygen one and it is safe to use on coloureds or at least, safer than
chlorine type bleach.
I have an antibacterial wash on my machine, I use it once a month.
I'm looking to add a laundry additive to my laundry washing load that
has the most powerful antifungal and antibacterial properties
available. I won't be washing just white fabrics (but a range of
colours), so a non-chlorine, non-whitening additive is what's needed.
I have used products containing sodium percarbonate, but have not
tried Borax (sodium borate decahydrate). This is why I want to find
out how they compare. The main point is I am trying to find out what
specific chemical compounds are most effective, rather than off-the-
shelf products, because I'm quite likely going to buy the active
ingredients themselves (as this is much much more cost effective -
this is a priority).
As an aside, I'v found that most laundry washing powders/detergents
all "generally" do a good job at cleaning and removing stains.....but
killing bacteria, and particularly fungus, is another matter
entirely. Yes, I do hang all my clothes inside-out, and in the sun.
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