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Worksheet Questions - What Do They Mean?

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1. Purchase price: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the price per gallon of the test blanket wash much more, more, the same, less, or much less?

The most obvious difference between two blanket washes is the cost to buy them. Compare the cost per gallon of your normal wash to the test wash. Answer "much more" if the test wash costs twice as much as your normal wash or "much less" if it is half the price or less. Factor in dilution ratios for those washes that are shipped as concentrates.

2. Amount used per cleaning: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the amount of test wash used to clean each blanket much more, more, the same, less, or much less?
The more wash you use each time you clean a blanket, the more it costs you. Ask press operators how much of the test wash is needed to clean the blanket compared to the amount of normal wash. Answer "much more" if it takes twice as much test wash or "much less" if it takes less than half as much to clean the blanket.

3. Time to clean a blanket: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the time required to clean a blanket with the test wash much more, more, the same, less, or much less?
Press downtime costs money. If the test wash takes twice as long to clean the blanket, answer "much more". Answer "much less" if the test wash takes only half as long as your normal wash.

4. Press operator opinion: Compared to your normal blanket wash, What does the press operator think of the test wash? Is it much worse, worse, the same, better, or much better?
Ask press operators to compare the test wash to the normal wash on odor, blanket swell, the time required for the press to come back to color, the effort required to use the washes, and any other factors they think are important. Combine these into an overall score for this question.

5. Hazardous chemicals: Does the test wash contain hazardous chemicals as defined by environmental laws or the Occupational Safety and Health Act (OSHA)?
Contact the supplier or manufacturer for this information. A variety of environmental regulations apply to hazardous materials because of their potential dangers to people and the environment. Violations may result in large fines. At the very least, using a regulated hazardous chemical may increase compliance costs. Ask your blanket wash supplier if the blanket wash, or its waste, is considered hazardous under any environmental law (such as RCRA, CAA, CERCLA, or EPCRA - Section 2, etc.) or under OSHA. Never mix hazardous and non-hazardous wastes. The hazardous chemicals in a blanket wash, as defined by OSHA, are usually listed in Section 2 of the MSDS form. If this section says "none", your test wash probably does not contain OSHA hazardous chemicals. But beware. The MSDS lists OSHA hazardous chemicals only. The blanket wash may still contain chemicals defined as hazardous by other environmental regulations. If this section is blank, ask your supplier. See Questions to Ask When You Call Your Blanket Wash Supplier for more information.

6. Evaporation: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the vapor pressure of the test wash much higher, higher, the same, lower, or much lower?
See MSDS Section 3 - Physical and Chemical Characteristics - for vapor pressure information. Vapor pressure is a measurement of how quickly a chemical evaporates. The higher the vapor pressure of a blanket wash, the quicker it evaporates. If a blanket wash has hazardous ingredients, they can evaporate into the air in your shop, enter the lungs of your workers, and pollute the surrounding environment. If the vapor pres-sure of your test wash is less than the wash you are currently using, it may evaporate less in your shop. Vapor pressure is usually expressed in mmHg. Call your supplier if the vapor pressures of the washes are expressed in different units. 10 mmHg is usually a regulatory cut-off, but the lower the vapor pressure the better.

If the test wash vapor pressure (in mmHg) is Score
More than ten times higher Much higher
Between ten times and 1.5 times higher Higher
Between 1.5 times higher and 1.5 times lower Same
Between 1.5 times and ten times lower Lower
More than ten times lower Much lower

7. Environmental Regulations and Worker Health: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the percentage VOCs of the test wash much higher, higher, the same, lower, or much lower?
Contact supplier or manufacturer for this information. The amount of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) in your blanket wash can affect your costs of complying with environmental regulations, especially Clean Air Act regulations on emissions from your shop. VOCs contribute to lower level smog and may have health concerns. If the test blanket wash has low or no VOC content, your environmental compliance responsibilities (and costs) may be lowered and the health and safety of your employees may be improved. You might need to contact your blanket wash manufacturer for this item (see Questions to Ask When You Call Your Blanket Wash Supplier for more information). Score "much higher" if the percentage VOC content of the test wash is two times or more that of the normal wash or "much lower" if the percentage VOC content of the test wash is two times or more lower. Score "same" if within 10%.

8. Flammability: Compared to your normal blanket wash, Is the flash point of the test wash much higher, higher, the same, lower, or much lower?

See MSDS Section 4 - Fire and Explosion Data - for flash point information. The flash point is one measurement of the temperature at which a chemical will ignite. In general, as flash point increas-es, so does safety. Even though the minimum flash point for flammability is 100° F and for hazardous wastes is 140ºF, the higher the flash point the better. A less flammable chemical may save you money on your property insurance as well as exempt you from costly storage and record keeping requirements of environmental and safety regulations such as RCRA and OSHA. Contact your insurance underwriter for a reappraisal to determine the cost savings from using a less flammable blanket wash at your shop. If the flash point of the test wash is two times lower than the normal wash, mark "much lower" on the work-sheet. If the flash point of the test wash is more than two times higher, mark "much higher" on the worksheet. Score "same" if within 15ºF .

9. Other: Compared to your normal blanket wash, How does the test wash compare on any other factors? Much worse, worse, same, better, or much better?
Compare the performance of the test wash to your normal wash on any other factors important to your shop. Some examples include acceptability of wash to commercial laundry, corrison of press parts, wash availability, dilution, and availability of recycled containers.


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