White spirit is a flammable, clear, colorless liquid. It is a mixture of chemicals known as petroleum hydrocarbons. It is a petroleum distillate which the odor and capacity to act as solvent depend on the extent to which the so-called “aromatic hydrocarbons” are dissolved in the solvent. Well-known aromatic hydrocarbons are xylene and toluene, which incidentally are present only in small quantities in white spirit. Various types of white spirit are available. In general, the solvent capacity increases if the percentage of aromatic hydrocarbons is higher. The odorless property of white spirit is the result of the almost complete lack of aromatic hydrocarbons, resulting in not only the odor being much less but the solvent capacity as well.
- White Spirit
- Application: paints, coatings, waxes, varnishes, adhesives, printing inks and liquid photocopier toners, a solvent for cleaning, degreasing and substance extraction.
- Packing: Drum
White Spirit is a petroleum distillate used as a paint thinner and mild solvent. In industry, mineral spirits are used for cleaning and degreasing machine tools and parts, and in conjunction with cutting oil as a thread cutting and reaming lubricant.
Mineral spirits are an inexpensive petroleum-based substitute for the vegetable-based turpentine. It is commonly used as a paint thinner for oil-based paint and cleaning brushes, and as an organic solvent in other applications. Mineral turpentine is chemically very different from turpentine, which mainly consists of pine, and it has inferior solvent properties. Artists use mineral spirits as an alternative to turpentine since it is less flammable and less toxic. Because of interactions with pigments, artists require a higher grade of mineral spirits than many industrial users, including the complete absence of residual sulfur.
In screen printing (also referred to as silk-screening), mineral spirits are often used to clean and unclog screens after printing with oil-based textile and Plastisol inks. They are also used to thin inks used in making mono-prints. Mineral spirits are often used in liquid-filled compasses and gauges.