Posted by Andy Thomas on May 01, 2014

CTS Newsletter No.2, May 2014

Welcome to our summer newsletter. In this edition you will learn about the latest regulations affecting paint strippers. You will also see our latest special offers. I am also pleased to be able to advise you that we have arranged for health and safety support to be available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year! Whenever you need it!

24 / 7 Response

You will now find our latest health and safety data sheets have a 24 hour emergency response number, as well as our usual office number. We have appointed “24/7 Response” to operate an out of hours emergency helpline. This number is...

From the UK: 0207.858.1228

Outside the UK: +44.207.858.1228

The law, Paint Removers and you

Issues of health, safety and environmental protection are having a significant effect on the choice of chemicals that are available for paint removal. The classic “cold stripper” uses a chemical commonly known as methylene chloride (also known as Dichloromethane or DCM for short). Despite being considered one of the least toxic of the chlorohydrocarbons, DCM has proven fatal when used in badly ventilated areas. DCM is heavier than air and brush applied DCM based paint removers have caused the deaths of a number of people across Europe, typically by using it in stairwells and cellars where the vapour cannot escape. Thus the user inhales high volumes of DCM which is metabolised by the body to produce toxic carbon monoxide.

The European Parliament therefore passed a decision “EU decision No 455/2009/EC” to ban the use of DCM based paint removers from public and “professional” use. The EU separated people who use DCM based products” in a factory environment” as being Industrial use (which is permitted) from people who use the product outside a factory environment as being “professional” or consumer use, which is effectively banned.

Our DCM based products all carry a separate label warning customers “Restricted to Industrial Use and to professionals approved in certain member states – Verify where use is allowed”. Resale of DCM based products to consumers is therefore illegal. As of April 2014, DCM has NOT been placed on the REACH*, SVHC (Substance of Very High Concern) list and therefore continues to be available for Industrial use. The proviso is that in a factory environment the correct PPE, extraction, etc. has to be provided under existing legislation.


Benzyl Alcohol has proven a useful alternative when used hot under industrial conditions. It has the benefit of having low toxicity and low flammability. When used at room temperature however it is unacceptably slow and makes a poor replacement for DCM. It is very effective hot whenused on polyester powder coatings on architectural and automotive parts. Our C-440/441 is an excellent two component benzyl alcohol based hot stripper for powder and other industrial coatings.

The newest gel type stripping technology uses small molecules such as Acetals to penetrate and attack the dried paint film with devastating effect. Our C-400 “Jelly Strip” is a brush applied paint remover based on this new technology. Our activation system is very effective and C-400 has proven to be faster than almost any other product on the market. It has stripping rates to match traditional DCM systems.


We are very aware of the dangers posed by many traditional activators. Phenols and Cresols are very toxic and have all been removed from our formulations, as has extremely dangerous hydrofluoric acid. These activators can still be found in regular use despite safer options being available. Beware of toxic symbols on competing products! That said, be aware that any chemical that will strip paint will also have a nasty effect on human skin!

THE CTS product offer

Application Strippers: (application means manually applied by brush or knife.) C-160 is our “traditional” gel application stripper. C-160 uses DCM and is only available for industrial users. C-160 is acid activated and rapidly strips paint off most surfaces. C-165 is also a “traditional” gel based application stripper. C-165 uses DCM and is only available for industrial users. It is alcohol activated which makes it slower but more suited to softer surfaces such as wood.

C-400 is our DCM FREE paint remover which means it can be used both by Industrial AND professional users. It is acid activated and by way of an example, will remove most stove enamelled barrel coatings in less than 10 minutes.

Immersion Strippers

C-167 is our traditional DCM based cold stripper. This is ideal for use in a paint shop for stripping thick paint layers off jigs and badly painted metal components. It contains a wax seal to minimise evaporative losses. C-167 does not require any additional heat and steel jigs and parts left overnight in a lidded tank of this product will be stripped ready for use the following day. Single paint layers can be removed in under 1 hour depending on paint type and degree of cure.

C-440/ C-441 is our two component benzyl alcohol based hot stripper. It must be used without any water being present when stripping aluminium parts if etching is to be avoided.

Challenge CTS!

We invite our customers to challenge us to remove their coatings. Please supply samples of your painted jigs or parts to our laboratories and we will try to find the optimum system for you within 10 working days.

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