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What is caustic soda and how to apply it?

We all know the baking soda. She is in the kitchen at almost every housewife. But there are two more types of soda, which are less known, but no less useful. It is about soda and caustic soda. In our article, we will dwell on the latter in more detail, since of all kinds of soda it is the most aggressive, and therefore the most questions arise as to how and where it can be used.

Caustic soda - this is a very strong alkali, which can corrode any organic compounds, whether it be old stains on the dishes or rust in the pipes. For this property it is also called caustic soda. In industry, it is more commonly known as sodium hydroxide (NaOH) or caustic soda.

It is different from baking soda in appearance. If the first is a white powder, then caustic soda has the form of granules, which dissolve produce heat. In addition, it can be in the form of a colorless liquid.

What is caustic soda for?

Many of us have never heard of this type of soda, but, nevertheless, the scope of its use is very extensive. Caustic soda is part of a huge amount of funds, and at least one of them is definitely in your bathroom or kitchen. The main purpose of caustic soda in everyday life is to corrode stains, but it is not suitable for cleaning aluminum surfaces.

So where is it used?

The field of its application covers many industries. Among them:

  • chemical industry (caustic soda is used to titrate aluminum, neutralize acids, manufacture detergents and various oils, and also as a catalyst for reactions);
  • pulp and paper industry (for the manufacture of various types of paper, cardboard, wood fiber boards, etc.);
  • food industry (as a food additive E524 for the production of various beverages, ice cream, chocolate, etc., as well as for cleaning food equipment);
  • automotive industry (for the manufacture of alkaline batteries);
  • light industry (as a bleach for fabrics, mainly cotton, flax, as well as in the production of silk);
  • for the production of biofuels.

How can you use caustic soda in everyday life?

At home, caustic soda is usually used to clean dishes (pots, pans and kettles) from soot, old stains of fat and scale.

It is also used to clean sewage. It corrodes everything organic, so it easily removes all fat, protein and other deposits from the surface of the pipes.

So, in order to get rid of blockages in the pipes you need a container in which caustic soda is stored, shake well. Then you need to pour or pour (depending on the form in which the caustic is: liquid or granular) 2-3 tablespoons of the substance directly into the drain, and from above you need to pour 1 cup of hot water. It is necessary to wait for two hours until the reaction occurs, and after that you need to flush the drain with a strong jet of water.

Also, caustic soda is used to clean pipelines. It is added to the water during the inspection of pipes using a shock wave. This solution helps to clean them from rust and scale formed on the inner surface of the pipes.

Security measures

Caustic soda in its pure form is a very aggressive alkali that can cause a severe chemical burn if it gets on the skin or in the eyes.Therefore, if you decide to use it at home, be sure to take care of security measures. Ordinary kitchen gloves will not work. It is necessary to use special rubberized gloves, as well as goggles.

If you accidentally got caustic into your eyes, you should immediately rinse them under running water, and then you should consult a doctor. If he got on the skin, then it must be wiped with a weak solution of vinegar to neutralize the action of alkali.

Store caustic soda in tightly closed containers and in tight places so that children can not reach it, and never forget about protective equipment when using it at home.

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