The key difference between chlorine and non chlorine bleach is that chlorine bleach is not suitable for colored items, whereas non chlorine bleach can be used with colored items.
Bleach is a chemical product that can be used industrially or domestically to remove the color from a fabric or fiber to clean or remove stains through the bleaching process.
What is Chlorine Bleach?
Chlorine bleach is a chemical product that is able to make materials whiter or sterilize drains, sinks, etc. It is composed of a considerable amount of percent active chlorine. This type of bleaching agent can be found in many household bleaching products and in specialized products for hospitals, public health, water chlorination, and some other industrial processes. This grade of bleaching products is often expressed as percent active chlorine. Typically, 1 gram of 100% active chlorine bleach contains the same bleaching power as 1 gram of elemental chlorine.
There are different types of chlorine bleach, such as sodium hypochlorite, bleaching powder, chlorine gas, chlorine dioxide, monochloramine, halazone, and sodium dichloroisocyanaurate. Sodium hypochlorite (NaClO) has a 3 – 6% solution in water and is usually known as liquid bleach. Historically, it was known as “javel water.” This agent is useful in many household work: to white laundry, disinfect hard surfaces in the kitchen and bathroom, treat water for drinking, keep swimming pools free of infectious agents, etc.
Bleaching powder that consisted of chlorine was formerly known as chlorinated lime. It is usually a mixture of calcium hypochlorite, calcium hydroxide, and calcium chloride. It is sold as a white powder in tablet form to be used in many applications similar to that of sodium hypochlorite but with more stability and more chlorine content.
What is Non Chlorine Bleach?
Non chlorine bleach is a chemical product that does not contain chlorine as the major bleaching agent. It usually contains hydrogen peroxide, sodium perborate, and sodium percarbonate. The common names for this chemical agent include oxygen bleach, peroxide bleach, color-safe bleach, all fabric bleach, and Clorox 2 for colors. This bleach is different from chlorine bleach because we can use it for colored items as well.
In addition to items with color, we can use non chlorine bleach for white items with cotton, polyester, Nylon, Acrylic, Rayon, and Spandex. When using this bleach, we can add a drop of liquid Clorox 2 to a hidden part of the item, wait for 5 minutes, rinse and blot dry to see if the item is still colorful and whether the bleach can wash away the color of the particular item.
What is the Difference Between Chlorine and Non Chlorine Bleach?
In general, chlorine bleach has a high chlorine content, while non chlorine bleach has no chlorine for the bleaching process. The key difference between chlorine and non chlorine bleach is that chlorine bleach is not suitable for colored items, whereas non chlorine bleach can be used with colored items. Usually, chlorine bleach contains sodium hypochlorite and sodium dichloroisocyanurate. The composition of non chlorine bleach can be given as hydrogen peroxide, sodium perborate, and sodium percarbonate.
The below infographic presents the differences between chlorine and non chlorine bleach in tabular form for side-by-side comparison.
Summary – Chlorine vs Non Chlorine Bleach
Chlorine and non-chlorine bleach are important chemical products that are used in whitening and disinfecting applications. These are mainly categorized according to the chlorine content. Chlorine bleach has more chlorine, while non chlorine bleach has no chlorine. The key difference between chlorine and non chlorine bleach is that chlorine bleach is not suitable for colored items, whereas non chlorine bleach can be used with colored items.
1. “Bleach.” Wikipedia. Wikipedia Foundation.