About Sodium Percarbonate

Sodium Percarbonate is a Oxybleach and a more natural safer alternative to nasty chlorine bleach. It is the key ingredient in Napisan & other whiteners, they just add fillers, bleach activators and fragrance - then adjust the level of Percarbonate to brand "even more powerful" versions.


It is a combination of Washing Soda and Hydrogen Peroxide which is a hospital grade disinfectant and a natural bleaching agent. Once Percarbonate dissolved in water it releases the alkaline and cleaning power of Washing Soda along with the Hydrogen Peroxide. This in turn creates bubbles of Oxygen which work to remove grease, grime while the pH level kills bacteria.


Percarbonate is used is many heavy duty cleaning products and an absolute winner in the Laundry. It is much milder on fabrics, safe on both colours and whites and then breaks down and biodegrades quickly and naturally. It is a much healthier option for us and the environment.


The benefits of Percarbonate just keep going, here are some uses for it around the home.

  • Dishwasher - Make dishwasher powder or tablets and replace costly synthetic detergents

  • Pots & Pans - To remove some heavy duty grease and baked on stains, step up from Washing Soda or Bicarb and soak in a solution of hot/boiling water and percarbonate. 

  • Sanitiser - make a spray to disinfect bench-tops, bins & chopping boards in the kitchen as well as all the surfaces in the bathroom.

  • Laundry Booster- Add some to your laundry powder or use it make your own with an in built stain remover

  • Laundry Soak  - Remove greying and yellowing on fabrics, bring whites back to life and removes stains

  • Tiles and Grout- Make a paste with washing soda, borax and soap flakes for a supercharged gumption. See this old Laundry Butter recipe for the best paste ever!

  • Outdoors -  Clean garden furniture, patios and concrete

It is likely you are already using Sodium Percarbonate in store bought cleaners, but it often riddled with other surfactants, fillers and fragrance.  It often included a bleach activator which is further made up of chemicals and is there to replace the heat needed to activate the bleaching power. 

This is so we can potentially soak in lower temperatures, whilst being a good thing, does it outweigh the damage caused by the product itself? 


You can skip the bleach activator by using hot water, usually above 35 degrees, or even better boiling water. This does not mean you need to have the entire wash water this high, but at least dissolve the power in the heated water to get it activated. 


This is so we can potentially soak in lower temperatures, whilst being a good thing, does it outweigh the damage caused by the product itself? 


You can skip the bleach activator by using hot water, usually above 35 degrees, or even better boiling water. This does not mean you need to have the entire wash water this high, but at least dissolve the power in the heated water to get it activated. 


When it comes to handling this precious ingredient, common sense always prevails. Please do not eat it, or rub it in your eyes as it can cause serious damage. Best to work in a well ventilated area to avoid breathing in any raised dust. Just like adding salt to wound, it will sting! So if you are sensitive or have any cuts/abrasions try avoid direct contact or use gloves. You can access a standard MSDS for Sodium Percarbonate here


So next time you go to grab the White King or Domestos bleach, think again - a small bag of Percarbonate will last you a long longer, retain its strength until you need it, work in powder of liquid form, it is environmentally friendly and most importantly better for health. 


You can grab some for your cleaning toolkit here.

Footnotes

Thank you to the various sources relied upon the compile this article


Hera project. (n.d.). Human & Environmental Risk Assessment on. Retrieved from https://www.heraproject.com/files/6-F-04-HERA%20percarbonate%20full%20web%20wd.pdf


Science Direct. (n.d.). Encyclopedia of Toxicology (Third Edition). Retrieved from https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/B9780123864543007363


Wikipedia. (n.d.). Sodium Percarbonate. Retrieved from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sodium_percarbonate

This article was updated 21 December 2020


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