Welcome to our Antique Bottles Community

Your FREE Account is waiting to the Best Antique Bottle Community on the Web.

Register Log in

How I clean bottles with Muriatic Acid.

Macaco

Well-Known Member
Jul 1, 2013
125
0
San Francisco Bay Area, CA
Hello All, I wrote a description of how I clean bottles with Muriatic Acid. I am not suggesting anyone use acid for cleaning bottles or anything else. It works for me though and I just wanted to describe how I do it: How I clean bottles with Muriatic Acid. Based on my experience, Muriatic Acid is good to remove organic stuff like algae and barnacles from glass. It's good for removing rust and iron stain. It doesn't clean off dirt or mud so I remove as much of that as I can with a water sprayer and brushes before I put the bottles in the acid. I buy acid at pool supply stores instead of hardware stores. It's cheaper at the pool supply. I use three buckets for my acid cleaning.
One bucket has Approx. 70% water, 30% acid. Less or more acid can be used based on personal preference.
The second bucket has water with dissolved sodium bicarb (baking soda). I use about a cup of bicarb for about three gallons of water and stir it with a stick. The third bucket has just water. I keep the buckets within about a foot of each other. I use a 'Sharpie' to mark the buckets based on what's in them. All the buckets are about half full of fluid. I like to ensure that I can reach the bottom of the acid bucket to grab a bottle without the acid spilling over inside my gloves. I wear nitrile dish-washing gloves that go about two thirds up my forearm. I slowly pour the acid in the water then I add the bottles. SLOWLY. When the bottles fill, the bubbles cause splashing which I shield against with one of my gloved hands. I also wear goggles. I keep a smaller bucket of water and bicarb nearby as a neutralizer so I can easily pour it onto my skin or face and eyes if a bigger splash happens. I cover the acid bucket by setting a plastic lid on top. I never seal the bucket. I let it soak for about an hour then I check the bottles. I pull out a bottle, empty it back into the acid bucket SLOWLY, just above the surface of the solution then I submerge it in the sodium bicarb bucket, filling the bottle to neutralize the acid. Then I empty it back into that bucket. If the bottle looks clean enough I rinse it in the plain water bucket, filling it, then emptying then set it aside to dry or I use a brush and water to remove light residue. If it still has gunk on it I return it to the acid bath. Then I check the next bottle. The reason for the bicarb is to neutralize the acid so I can move the bottle around without dripping acid onto the ground or my feet when I hold up the bottle to the light to see if it's clean enough. The reason for the plain water bucket is to rinse off the bicarb. When the bicarb dries it can leave a very light, powdery residue on the glass so it's good to get it off. The second reason is so I can return a bottle that isn't fully cleaned to the acid bath without weakening the acid with bicarb water which would remain on the bottle and on my gloves if I didn't rinse it off. When I do return a bottle to the acid I rinse my glove covered hands in the bicarb water, then the plain water before I remove them. Some bottles with light rust can be spotless clean in an hour. More heavily encrusted glass I allow to soak overnight sometimes. When I am finished cleaning the bottles I very slowly pour the bicarb water into the acid bucket. Since the buckets were about half full I end up with one full bucket where the bicarb can neutralize the acid before I pour it out. I let that one go overnight. I set a lid on top so an animal or bird won't drink from it. I don't seal it. The solution will fizz like soda water but it doesn't do the volcanic, explosive foaming that happens when I put dry baking soda in acid water. That's my process for cleaning bottles with acid. Is it the right way? Is it the best way? I can't say for sure. It's just the way I do it. Thanks for reading. Questions and comments are welcome. Steve
 

andy volkerts

Well-Known Member
Jan 10, 2005
2,833
0
Sacramento, California
Not exactly a new method of cleaning bottles, but this was one of the best descriptions of the acid bath method of cleaning bottles that I have read. Very nice example of how to properly use a dangerous chemical the correct way to arrive at a good destination.........I E clean bottles!!
 

Macaco

Well-Known Member
Jul 1, 2013
125
0
San Francisco Bay Area, CA
andy volkerts said:
Not exactly a new method of cleaning bottles, but this was one of the best descriptions of the acid bath method of cleaning bottles that I have read. Very nice example of how to properly use a dangerous chemical the correct way to arrive at a good destination.........I E clean bottles!!
Thanks Andy.Just hoping to help anyone new to the concept with my own experience.Steve
 

Members online

Latest threads

Forum statistics

Threads
74,763
Messages
683,786
Members
16,071
Latest member
tzurko
Top