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Options: Substitute Blanket Washes

What are my options for a substitute 	blanket wash?

A substitute blanket wash can be classified by its primary chemical component. The Design for the Environment Lithographic Printing Partnership product trials evaluated 22 substitute blanket washes that were classified into four different categories of chemicals.

These washes were tested and compared to a baseline wash by printers in their print shops. Some of the characteristics of the four categories and the baseline are listed below:


VM&P Naphtha:

+ quick-drying
- 100% volatile organic compounds (VOCs)
- health and environmental concerns



+ quick- drying
- greater than 60% VOCs
- health and environmental concerns

Vegetable ester:

+ VOC content as low as 5%
+ unprocessed towels may be treated as non-hazardous waste
+ lack of odor

Petroleum/vegetable ester mixtures:

+/- VOC content less than most petroleum-based washes, but not all are less than 30% VOC
+/- Depending on proportion of petroleum, may have health and environmental concerns


+ low VOC, derived from wood and citrus products
+ does not deplete ozone
- odor can be irritating to press operators

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