Can I Use TCE (Trichloroethylene) In My Vapor Degreaser?
It is no longer recommended to use trichloroethylene, also called TCE or trike, CAS #79-01-6. While TCE was widely used since the 1950s, it is an old-style chlorinated solvent that generally should be avoided in today’s environment. The main advantages of TCE is that it is inexpensive, widely available and cleans very well. However, it is a proven carcinogen, which may create long-term liabilities for companies that use it. There are newer, better, safer alternatives for you to select.
Specifically, in 2011 the US EPA wrote:
“Based on the available human epidemiologic data and experimental and mechanistic studies, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has concluded that TCE poses a potential health hazard to the human central nervous system, kidney, liver, immune system, male reproductive system, and to a developing fetus. TCE is characterized as carcinogenic in humans by all routes of exposure for kidney cancer. There also is human evidence of carcinogenicity for non-Hodgkin Lymphoma, more limited evidence for liver and biliary tract cancer, and some evidence is found for bladder, esophageal, prostate, cervical, breast, and childhood leukemia, and breast cancers.”