Chlorine bleach, which contains the active ingredient Sodium hypochlorite, is one of the most important and probably one of the most widely used common cleaning products in the home.
At ABC, we offer suggestions for in-home cleaning with common 'natural' cleaners vs. commercial cleaners which may contain toxic chemicals. However, it is important to remember that certain of those 'natural' cleaners should NEVER be used together, or dire health consequences could occur.
It is of utmost importance to understand that many other household cleaning products may contain
bleach (one such example is pool chemicals) and window and glass cleaners may contain ammonia, so it is extremely important to
read the labels of all products before using.
Bleach should never be used with AMMONIA or ACIDS or any product containing either of these.
Toxic gases are produced. Exposure to these gases can cause the following to occur:
MIXING WITH AMMONIA (chloramines)
MIXING WITH ACIDS
This will produce chlorine gas. Chlorine gas + water=hydrochloric and hypochlorous acids:
At low levels:
At higher levels:
At very high levels:
NOTE: Chlorine can also be absorbed through the skin causing pain, inflammation, swelling, and blistering. Hydrochloric acid causes burns to the skin, eyes, nose, throat, mouth, and lungs.
MIXING WITH RUBBING ALCOHOL
Chloroform could be produced if the above items should be used together.
The active ingredient in chlorine bleach, sodium hypochlorite, produces a negative reaction with isopropyl alcohol (rubbing Alcohol) or ethanol.
In any emergency, please call 911. You can also call your local poison control center or your local hospital emergency department.
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