Beware: Not all biocides are as effective as Benz Bio Cleanze

January 27, 2016

Beware: Not all Biocides are as Good as Benz Biocidal Wash

Just because a car has four wheels and an engine does not make it a BMW.

Similarly, just because a chemical is called a biocide, or "quat" (quaternary ammonium) does not make it Benz Bio Cleanze.

Quats in general are broken down by the presence of organic matter, particularly proteins that adversely affect their activity. But while quats like BKC (Benzalkonium Chloride)*  are particularly sensitive to organic matter the high quality twin chain quat of DDAC (Didecyldimethylammonium chloride) used in Bio Cleanze is far less susceptible.

* Benzalkonium chloride is also known as BZK, BKC, BAC, alkyldimethylbenzylammonium chloride and ADBAC, and is a class of low-grade cationic surfactant used in some cheap forms of quat products. BKC is affected by hard water, which Bio Cleanze is not.

Benzalkonium chloride is sometimes used by unscrupulous contractors who can then claim to have treated a customer's property with a biocide. Their unfortunate customers do not realise they have been duped into paying for an inferior product that will not give them the results they expected. It does not produce the impressive cleaning results, nor does it have the long-lasting residual effect, of Bio Cleanze.

In contrast, the particularly pure grade of DDAC used to create Bio Cleanze is also used to formulate many other products including disinfectants, cleansers and sterilants for:

  • The food and beverage industries.
  • Hospitals.
  • Household and industrial kitchens.
  • Veterinary and institutional applications.

The purity of Benz DDAC is guaranteed by our suppliers to be greater than 95% and is typically 98%. The content of DDAC in the supplied product is typically 50-52% and never drops below 50%.

Pre-cleaning before applying biocide

Quats are most effective when used on surfaces that have been pre-cleaned to remove organic matter. The pure DDAC in Bio Cleanze has a particularly high tolerance to organic soiling, hard water and to anionic residuals (chemically complex but essentially negatively charged ions that form hydrogen bonds with water and are forms of soaps), all of which can result in de-activativation.

Quick tip: the propensity of Bio Cleanze to have a high tolerance to previous soap residues (that's the anionic residuals) means that it can be used following a treatment with Benz Lightning Cleanze.

This is not the case with low-grade biocides as the small amount of residual surfactant (soap) left behind by Lightning Cleanze – and especially the  cheap "home chemistry" sodium hypochlorite solutions that use inferior surfactants – would inhibit the effectiveness of the biocide.

The residual effect of Bio Cleanze

The adsorptive* nature of Bio Cleanze means it will bind to the surfaces on which it is applied and offer residual anti-bacterial activity. The fact that surfaces remain clean for longer following a treatment with Bio Cleanze is due is to the combination of pre-cleaning – power washing or treatment with Lightning Cleanze – and subsequent use of Bio Cleanze rather than a low-grade quat such as BKC.

* The adhesion of atoms, ions, or molecules from a gas, liquid, or dissolved solid, to a surface.


Why we include IPA (Isopropyl Alcohol) in Bio Cleanze

Including a small quantity of IPA gives our product several advantages over the more basic biocides, even those that use a better quality quat than BKC:

  • It enables the fomula to include a full 50% of active ingredient (DDAC). Products made without IPA are limited to a maximum of 40% active ingredient.
  • Brings improved temperature stability in cold weather, preventing the thickening associated with non-IPA products, thus making Bio Cleanze an excellent all year round product.
  • The manufacturing process uses IPA to maintain the solubility and stability of the active ingredient (high purity DDAC).

Quick tip:
At recommended dilution rates, the very small quantity of IPA in Biocidal Wash as applied to a customer's property has zero effect on the silicone in, for example, wall renders and tarmac (even pure undiluted IPA has no lasting effect on silicone).

Some biocides may appear to be cheaper

There are many diluted products on the market with names such as “Mossgone”, “Algae Away”, “Moss Terminator”, “Patio Clear” and so on. They claim to do a similar job to Bio Cleanze and at first glance may appear to be cheaper.

But the truth is they are very weak and contain only 5-10% active ingredient (which is often only BKC), compared to the 50+% active ingredient of Bio Cleanze. That means they are 90-95% water.

In practice, because Bio Cleanze is so heavily concentrated, it works out up to 150% less expensive than the so-called "cheaper" alternatives.

Remember also that Bio Cleanze

  • Is ph neutral.
    • Is fully biodegradable, breaking down rapidly without "bio-accumulating".
    • Controls biological growths that cause the "dirty" appearance of red, green, and black staining – so surfaces stay cleaner, for longer.
    • Is not affected by hard or mineralised water.

    • Has a long-lasting residual effect that helps prevent re-colonisation of the treated surface.


    Government approvals for biocides

    It is important in today's world to always use products that conform to EU, UK and Irish regulations. Not using government approved biocides could result in prosecution and a contractor's insurance being made invalid.

    Benz Bio Cleanze is fully approved by both the Irish Pesticides Registration & Control Service and the UK Health & Safety Executive for use in Ireland and the UK. And it conforms to the Global Harmonised System (GHS) for product labelling.

    We hope this article has helped clarify the reality regarding the most commercially effective and environmentally responsible DDAC biocide that is best suited for professional softwashing.


    Ben, Leo
 & Fiona

    Click Here to explore the full range Benz popular softwash cleaning products

    Benz Softwash Bio Cleanze DDAC biocide & Benz Softwash Lightning Cleanze SH sodium hypochlorite biocide

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