Is common dishwashing detergent organic or inorganic?

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In summary, the conversation explains that dishwashing detergent usually contains organic compounds, but this does not mean it is considered an organic solvent. The term "organic" can have different meanings and in this context, it refers to non-water based solvents that can damage plastic containers.
  • #1
kenny1999
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I want to add some diluted dishwashing detergent to a bottle for spraying cockcoach, the bottle is claimed to degrade with organic solvent. Is dishwashing detergent organic?
 
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  • #2
kenny1999 said:
I want to add some diluted dishwashing detergent to a bottle for spraying cockcoach, the bottle is claimed to degrade with organic solvent. Is dishwashing detergent organic?
Not by default. Some are, or at least claim to be. Do you ask if the liquid is biodegradable or if the container bottle is?
 
  • #3
Dishwashing detergent usually has sodium lauryl sulfate as one of the ingredients. This is the grease binding detergent molecule. It is an organic chemical, meaning it has a carbon-2-carbon chemically bonded backbone. This has nothing to do with organic in the sense of organic gardening. Which seems to be what you are thinking. There are completely biodegradable household - Green - cleaning products.

Biodegradable means the molecules I mentioned can be broken down into simple components like water and carbon dioxide by bacteria. Yes they can. Most of the time. Dishwasher detergent, separate animal, often is based on additional chemistry some of which creates more resistance to bacterial degradation maybe for inorganic molecules, like calcium carbonate or other non-degradable organic molecules.

Industrial sewage is a whole new ballgame.

The reason sewage treatment plants aerate sewage is to help the bacteria break down all of the crud and debris and chemicals in sewage.

This whole deal is much more complex than this skimpy overview I gave:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sewage_treatment
 
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  • #4
kenny1999 said:
I want to add some diluted dishwashing detergent to a bottle for spraying cockcoach, the bottle is claimed to degrade with organic solvent. Is dishwashing detergent organic?

I would not count dishwashing detergent as an "organic solvent."

The question here is confused by the various definitions of "organic" that one might commonly come across in science and in everyday life.

Organic compounds (vs inorganic compounds) are chemical compounds that contain carbon-carbon bonds. In this sense, many dishwashing detergents, which do contain carbon-based molecules, are organic. However, this is not the relevant definition.

Organic products (vs conventional products) are consumer products produced to certain standards meant to promote environmental sustainability. This definition is also not relevant to the problem at hand.

Organic solvents (vs aqueous solvents) are non-water based solvents that are composed of non-polar compounds that will not mix with water. Examples of common organic solvents include hexane, diethyl ether, chloroform, and benzene. Because their chemical composition of organic solvents are similar to the compounds that make up plastics, organic solvents will often damage plastic containers (and are generally best stored in glass). This is the relevant definition, and I would not count water-based detergent solutions as organic solvents.
 
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  • #5
"Organic" does not mean healthy; nor natural; nor safe. Something may be "organic" according to expected or intended purpose but less trained or educated people could still come to argument about a topic. Reread posts # 2, 3, & 4 in great detail, and hopefully understand.
 

Related to Is common dishwashing detergent organic or inorganic?

1. Is common dishwashing detergent considered organic or inorganic?

Common dishwashing detergent is considered inorganic because it is made from synthetic chemicals rather than natural, organic materials.

2. Can dishwashing detergent be made from organic materials?

While some dishwashing detergents may contain small amounts of organic ingredients, the majority of them are made from inorganic substances due to their effectiveness in cleaning and removing grease and grime.

3. Are there any benefits to using organic dishwashing detergent?

Organic dishwashing detergents are typically made from natural and biodegradable ingredients, making them more environmentally friendly and less harmful to aquatic life. They may also be gentler on the skin and better for those with allergies or sensitivities.

4. How can I tell if a dishwashing detergent is organic?

You can look for certifications or labels on the packaging that indicate the product is made from organic materials. Additionally, you can check the ingredients list for natural substances such as plant-based oils or essential oils.

5. Is it safe to use inorganic dishwashing detergent?

Inorganic dishwashing detergents are generally safe to use as long as they are used as directed. However, some people may have sensitivities or allergies to certain chemicals found in these detergents, so it is important to read the ingredients list and use caution if you have any known sensitivities.

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