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5 Chemical Supplies Every Educational Lab Must Have

 

Supplying your educational lab is one of the most important things that you can do. To ensure that you are giving your students the best materials to use while they work on experiments and learn is an essential way to help them learn in a hands-on manner. While there are many laboratory supplies distributors available, it’s important to find ones that deliver quality goods to your laboratory.

If you aren’t sure exactly what your education lab needs, check out these five must-haves before you begin placing your order.

Buffer Solutions

Buffer solutions are necessary for chemistry labs, because they’re the base for many experiments you will be doing with your students. These solutions are great, because they resist changes in pH when acids and alkalis are added to them.

High Purity Solvents

Distilled and high purity solvents are another chemical that you’ll need for your educational lab. They’re great for many different experiments, and they help you teach your students. When purchases high purity solvents, it’s important to know how the supply distributor has prepared them. Make sure you do your research to find the best high purity solvents available for your lab.

Hot Plates

Experiments that involve heat either need alcohol burners or hot plates. These essential tools are staples in nearly every laboratory and in all educational labs. If you currently have hot plates in your lab, be sure to inspect them regularly to ensure that they’re up to safety regulations. If you have some hot plates that aren’t up to state and local standards, replace them as needed. This will help you make sure that your hot plates are safe for you and your students to use during experiments.

Glassware

Your educational lab most likely already has a supply of glassware to help you conduct your experiments. This glassware can include beakers, droppers, bottles, vials, and much more. Just like with the hot plates, be sure to inspect your glassware regularly to ensure that it is not weakening and that it doesn’t have cracks or breaks. If you need to purchase more glassware for your educational lab, Hi Valley Chemical offers a line of quality glassware products for any lab and any experiment.

Safety Supplies

As you know, all labs need high-quality safety equipment to ensure that, should an experiment go wrong, those involved in the lab accident are protected. This safety equipment can include goggles, gloves, and protective garments. Additionally, should an experiment go wrong, you should have safety supplies to help those in your lab apply first aid. When taking inventory of your laboratory, be sure to inspect your safety equipment. If any of your safety equipment is outdated or needs to be restocked, be sure to order more immediately in order to keep up with safety regulations in your area.

When it comes to stocking the inventory of your educational lab, there are a lot of things that you will need. For all of your laboratory needs, make sure you contact Hi Valley Chemicals to get high-quality equipment and chemicals for your lab.

The Necessity of Gloves in Chemical Experiments

 

Whether you’re a chemistry student working with your school laboratory equipment or a scientist, you understand the proper steps of testing a hypothesis. After forming a theory, it’s time to test it. Various experiments will help you to determine whether or not your original formulation was correct. In many cases, you’ll test and retest many different hypotheses before finally coming to a valid conclusion. In order to achieve exact and reliable results, the proper steps must be taken to safeguard your experiment. This includes understanding when is and isn’t an appropriate time to wear protective gear.

The Importance of Gloves

When working with chemicals, it’s crucial that gloves are always worn. While it may not seem important, these gloves can prevent disaster from occurring. The chemicals you’re working with could prove harmful if they come in contact with skin. Even if the substance seems relatively harmless, there’s no telling how your body will react. Prevent any issues from occurring by consistently wearing gloves each time you perform an experiment or work with chemicals.

Some prefer to wear one-time use gloves. These are beneficial as they’re easy to put on, easy to remove, and easy to throw away. However, others prefer the durability of gloves that can be reused. In the end, there’s no right or wrong glove to wear when working with chemicals. As long as you’re protecting yourself and your hands, it’s all a matter of preference.

Caring for Gloves

Heavy-duty gloves, while not disposable, still require attention. After each use, inspect the glove for any holes, breaks, or tears. If the glove appears to be intact, clean it according the manufacturer’s recommendations. It’s also smart to wash your gloves after extended use.

Your gloves shouldn’t be cross-contaminated. If your gloves have been exposed to dangerous elements, throw them away and put a new pair on before working with a different chemical. Not only does this protect the reliability of the experiment, but it prevents any unwanted reactions from occurring.

When to Remove the Gloves

As important as it is to wear gloves while working with chemicals, it’s equally as important to understand when to remove them. When you’re hard at work, it’s difficult to remember to take the gloves off when performing certain tasks. However, touching phones, equipment, hair, or even your face while wearing gloves could lead to contamination. Always remove your gloves before touching anything that isn’t related to your experiment. It’s also vital that gloves are only removed and cleaned within your laboratory as it prevents outside contamination.

To remove your gloves, grasp the cuff at the back of the wristband. Peel the glove off of your hand. If done properly, your glove will be inside out. You should never touch the outside of the glove with your hand. Once removed, wash your hands thoroughly.

Because protective equipment is so important when dealing with chemicals and conducting experiments, it’s imperative that you always have enough on hand. Whether you’re looking to replenish your school chemical supply of disposable gloves or you’re looking for a pair of sturdy gloves that can be reused, make sure that you have plenty in stock before beginning your project. Contact the team at Hi Valley Chemical today for more information!

Plastic vs Metal Containers: The Best Way to Store Chemicals in Winter

 

When winter rolls around,you’re not likely to want to spend much time outside looking into your chemical storage situation. This logistical step is something you’ll want to have squared away before the colder months hit. If you’re using chemicals for outside activities like pool treatment or to rid your property of insect infestations, you’ll need to have a plan to store these substances as the weather gets colder and you’re no longer using them.

When Winter Comes

Your timeline for this process will vary, depending on where you live. Winter hits some areas of the country as early as late October, while others bask in warmer temperatures until early December. Either way, if you need to store chemicals, you must decide whether to put them in metal or plastic containers. Read on for some information regarding the pluses and minuses of both materials.

Factors to Consider

First, you need to determine if the chemical you are storing is corrosive. Look at the label to see what ingredients it contains. Common corrosive acids include hydrochloric acid, nitric acid, and sulfuric acid. You may encounter corrosive bases like sodium hydroxide and potassium hydroxide. Many corrosive chemicals can destroy metal over long periods of time, so plastic is often the better choice for these substances.

You should consider stackability when deciding between metal and plastic for your chemical storage needs. Because of their rounded construction, most plastic containers are not as conducive to stacking as their metal counterparts. Therefore, if you have limited space and lots of chemical to store, and you are planning on using a stacking method, see if the chemical is safe to store in metal barrels.

On the flipside, if your containers do get upended somehow, you’ll find that plastic generally can withstand impact a little better and is more resistant to puncturing. If factors like noise play a part in your choice, be aware that something hitting a plastic container is going to be far less noisy than would an object bouncing off a metal container. Sound echoing through a large space like a warehouse can become a significant factor for consideration if you’re going to be spending a lot of time indoors around your containers in the winter.

If your chemicals are safe to store in metal, you may want to consider using it so you can save a little money. You’ll find that it is slightly less expensive than most plastic containers.

If you’re planning to recycle your containers eventually, you should be aware that metal is generally the more reusable  material. Because of this fact, it’s generally considered to be more friendly to the environment than plastic. You may not be thinking about recycling on the front end of your chemical storage decision, but when it’s time to dispose of these containers, chances are you’ll be disappointed if you have to throw a bunch of them away when the circumstance could have been avoided.

 

 

Making the Decision

Now that you know a little bit more about plastic versus metal storage for chemicals, you can make an informed decision when it’s time to store your unused substances during the winter. One of your key deciding factors will be whether or not your chemical can be safely stored in metal without corroding it. When you’re trying to make this decision, it may help to check with laboratory chemical suppliersbefore making a purchase. Visit hvchemical.com for more information as you make this important decision.

 

5 Facts You Should Learn about Hydrochloric Acid

 

Hydrochloric acid is found in a wide variety of products that range from fertilizer products to textiles. It also has domestic uses, and it can even be found within the human body. This versatile substance is useful in a wide variety of industries and products today, but it’s not without its unique drawbacks. It can be very harmful to humans if used without proper safety precautions. The following list is a short primer on five essential things you need to know about hydrochloric acid.

Five Facts

  1. Hydrochloric acid appears in the human body as an integral component in the digestive system. Secreted by the parietal cells, it enters the lumen of the stomach, where it functions as a significant portion of gastric acid. Hydrochloric acid works to activate pepsinogen, thereby forming an enzyme called pepsin. Pepsin works to break amino acid bonds during the proteolysis process, an event that, in a nutshell, amounts to protein breakdown.
  2. Its physical presentation can be recognized in several ways. This acid is generally colorless or slightly yellow, and it presents with a distinct and irritating odor. The same things are true of hydrogen chloride, the gas that forms when hydrochloric acid comes in contact with water.
  3. Humans have known about hydrochloric acid for a long time. Originally produced from green vitriol and rock salt, and later a combination of sulfuric acid and common salt, it’s also known as muriatic acid, acidum salis, and spirits of salt.
  4. Its uses range from domestic cleaning products in the United Kingdom to the large-scale production of the dichloroethane and vinyl chloride used in PVC manufacturing around the world. It’s also used to ready metals like iron or steel for processes like extrusion or rolling by removing iron oxide or rust. Once free of these impurities and blemishes, metal can be shaped more quickly and smoothly.
  5. Due to its highly corrosive nature, great care must be taken when handling hydrochloric acid. Skin contact can result in serious burns, while inhalation can irritate the respiratory tract. Swallowing this type of acid can corrode mucous membranes, stomach, and esophageal tissues. Long-term exposure for people working with hydrochloric acid can result in chronic health conditions like dermatitis, bronchitis, and photosensitization. Safety protocol has been established in conjunction with this acid in its industrial and domestic uses so that humans may employ it for its benefits without being harmed in the process.

 

Recognizing Hydrochloric Acid

Now that you know a little bit more about hydrochloric acid, you should be able to see that it’s present in a plethora of applications around the world. So, the next time you visit a chemical supplies store and you see containers with the various names for hydrochloric acid, you’ll have a better idea of their uses. Often, domestic projects can present the most danger for those utilizing hydrochloric acid because those embarking on do-it-yourself projects usually don’t use this type of acid on a daily basis. Therefore, to prevent injury or improper usage, a little education can go a long way for those embarking on a home improvement project involving this type of acid. A visit to hvchemical.com will help to clarify questions you may have and provide you with information you might find useful in your future applications of this and other acids and chemicals.

Tips to Build Efficient Science Laboratory in Schools

 

There are a few things in school that compare with a science lab. A well-designed lab adequately stocked with school laboratory supplies can provide just the learning environment to allow students to explore science safely. Best of all, it can open the doors of science to students and help them understand difficult concepts in a way reading about those concepts can never accomplish. Here are the essentials that make a good lab.

Location

A school science lab has to be located in a space that gets adequate natural light. Natural light is key to many different science experiments and can help achieve more accurate results than using artificial lights. The location should also be central to most school traffic. Additionally, a school lab should have outside access directly not only for quick evacuation should there be a chemical or fire hazard, but also to allow first responders instant access.

Safety Focused

Young scientists will handle a number of chemicals and substances that can be deadly or at least make people very sick if the environment is not tightly controlled. That means it has to be well ventilated with constant flow of fresh air. It also means that safety equipment, such as fire extinguishers are located near school lab supplies and exits are clearly marked.

Well Equipped

A superb school lab will have enough school laboratory equipment and supplies to allow every student the opportunity to complete a laboratory assignment. That means it will also have excess supplies for breakable objects or equipment and substances that routinely will get used up. If the school’s science personnel is savvy, they can probably work out an agreement with the school laboratory suppliers to get equipment repaired or maintained in a timely manner and sufficient supplies so that they never run out.

 

Layout

Much like location, the layout of a school lab can ensure the safety of participants. Making sure exits are clearly marked and unobstructed as well as easy to get to is key. So is making sure that safety equipment is easily accessible as teenagers frequently will choose expediency over safety. A lab with good flow will reduce and even eliminate the possibility that chemicals will be spilled because of obstruction or tight spaces. It also will allow for moving experiments without running the risk of a spill or fall.

When it comes to learning about science, a school lab is a powerful learning environment. It must have adequate school laboratory supplies, be focused on safety, and have a good layout to be effective.

Now that you’ve read about tips on building an efficient science lab, visit Hi Valley Chemical to help you equip your lab with school laboratory supplies.

An Overview of Laboratory Tubes

Working in a laboratory setting requires you to have one of the most useful glassware of all, which is the test tube. Laboratory supplies companies produce a lot of these finger-like glasswares or tubing for various reasons. They are open at the top and closed at the bottom to primarily hold an amount of liquid or solid inside for storing, heating, mixing, and observing. Here are some fascinating ideas you should know about the test tubes.

Used for Storing and Heating

People use test tubes to contain various substances in general chemistry. They resist heat and corrosion because they are made with borosilicate. This material is highly expansion-resistant, and thus, makes the test tubes a suitable receptacle for substances that you want to heat. You can do this by holding it using tongs over an alcohol lamp or a Bunsen burner.
You can also use them to store bioscience cultures and samples. Laboratory chemical suppliers can provide you with tubes that come with rubber stoppers for this purpose.

Used in Experiments That Capture Gas

With the help of a rubber stopper with a hole in the center, you can insert a glass or plastic tube for capturing gas and vapor in electrolysis experiments. For example, you can use test tubes to produce small distilled samples of a substance or to isolate solid parts from liquid and gas.

Different Shapes and Sizes

Test tubes also come in different sizes. The diameter and the length of the glass tube vary, along with the type of lid that you need for a project. There are also types that have flared lids to allow you to pour substances while minimizing wastage. If you’re a lab scientist, you might want to invest in test tubes that have similar lengths (150-200mm) for convenience and to make them all fit in a rack uniformly.

 

Centrifugation

A laboratory equipment supplier can also provide you with test tubes that you can use to separate particles from a solution using a centrifuge. These tubes specifically fit the type of centrifuge that you have in the lab and are used in various kinds of laboratories as well.

Lab Culture

Scientists also use test tubes to culture tissues, bacteria, living organisms like plants (as in cloning), fungus, and more. People typically use test tubes horizontally to maximize the surface for this type of purpose. These tubes are usually made of PP (polypropylene) plastic or high-grade borosilicate material so that they can undergo pasteurization and sterilization procedures without a hitch.

Hold Samples of Physiological Fluids

Vacutainers or small glass tubes with color-coded caps are used to hold physiological fluid samples. Each glass is designed to collect and contain a specific type of additive to ensure the integrity of the sample.

Some laboratory glassware supplies may also end up as pieces of arts and crafts projects. People use test tubes in many ways, and these are only some of the interesting uses for them.

Acetone: All You Should Know

 

Acetone is a solvent, meaning that it’s a liquid used to dissolve other substances. This colorless liquid is actually completely natural. The body’s metabolic system creates acetone, which can break down other chemicals.

It’s frequently used in the production of plastics. Many people associate acetone with cleaning products and nail polish remover, but these products usually only contain a small amount of acetone because it’s such a strong solvent. It can also be used in the textile industry, such as in the production of wool products. Acetone is even used to make lacquer paints for the automotive and furniture industries.
While it’s highly flammable, the Environmental Protection Agency deems it overall safe for human use and contact.

So where do companies that use acetone find it? This widely useful and affordable chemical can be purchased in bulk through laboratory and chemical supply companies.

Consider Hi Valley Chemical for all of your industrial chemical needs, including acetone and other useful substances. A small, family owned operation, we are committed to providing high-quality, excellent chemicals for several uses. As a small business, we love to help other small businesses achieve their goals, and that’s why we prioritize strong customer service. Contact Hi Valley Chemical or visit our website to learn more about the chemicals and other products we offer. Because you can shop online, we can ship our products straight to you. See for yourself why so many businesses rely on us for their chemical needs, and why they keep coming back to us.

How Chemical Regulations Impact the Innovation of Industries

 

Chemical manufacturing companies in America are some of the most regulated in the world. Because of that, there is a debate the rages over the cost and benefit of those regulations. While opinions certainly vary depending on one’s point of view, regulations in the chemical industry are generally viewed as beneficial and in some cases, critical to innovation. The question is more one of balance – at what point does a creativity-inspiring regulation cross the line into over-bearing and restrictive.

The Need for Regulations

Regardless of whether regulation help or hurt innovation in chemical manufacturing, one aspect of the debate is not contested: Regulations, in general, are good and needed. In the days when regulations were scarce or benign, inadvertent polluting of the air, ground and water was routine and clean up only deemed necessary when the incident necessitating cleanup was acute. The result was significant poisoning of waterways, poor air quality and ground “brown zones” that created the need for costly remediation and greater regulation.

The potential for accidents was acute. Train derailments, chemical spills, fires in chemical manufacturing facilities, deviation from the intended use of chemicals, all contributed to high profile and routine incidents that prompted calls for greater government oversight of chemical manufacturers. This spawned the debate of regulatory throttling of innovation versus safeguarding public safety.

Federal and State Intervention

These incidents of pollution, whether specific to an occurrence or the result of an ongoing process of manufacturing, prompted state capitals and Congress to act. The result was legislation like the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act and a slew of laws governing the transportation of chemicals and environmental safeguarding and remediation. As might be expected, pushback based on concerns over stifling innovation and even basic processing was almost immediate.

 

A Slow Consensus

That pushback, however, became tempered as it became obvious that while common sense had to govern regulatory implementation, regulations on the industry was not only necessary but could be very beneficial. Chemical manufacturers had to create new ways of production and transportation that placed an emphasis on safety and effectiveness as opposed to just effectiveness.

The Results

While some still maintain regulations on chemical supply companies, most in the chemical industry will at least concede that innovation was a direct result of those new rules. For example, innovation in the chemical composition of pesticides has yielded effective pest control, with vastly reduced dangers to customer-users. Improvements in research and development because of regulations has led to safer testing methods and better delivery-to-market options. At the retail level, more reliable storage and consumer warnings / instructions have reduced incidents of end-user accidents.

In essence, regulations governing chemical manufacturing companies, transportation of chemicals, retail procedures and end user exposure and use forced the industry to innovate and create environmentally safer products. What do you think? Contact Hi Valley Chemical to learn more.

Finding the Best Chemical Supplier for Your Business

Pick from the Bunch

When you’re searching for chemical suppliers, you may find that there are tons out there to chose from. So, sometimes the options might seem a little overwhelming. You can find chemical supplies online that assist both individuals and businesses. However, finding the right chemical supplies store does not need to be difficult. Consider the following factors to help you find the right chemical supplier for you.

Think Green

When you search for chemical suppliers near me, you may find that there are some environmentally friendly chemical suppliers. These suppliers want to provide you with green chemicals to clients such as you. As a part of their production, these suppliers might rely on sustainable feedstock. Most of these suppliers will also be using fossil fuels less and less. Generally, they’ll be using more hydrocarbons in their chemicals.

Out with the Bad

Besides finding chemicals that are good for the earth, green chemical suppliers try to find replacements for otherwise harmful chemicals. However, finding these chemicals can be expensive. So, whenever you buy from a green chemical supplier, you’re inadvertently helping fund their research. Your purchases help them get rid of bad chemicals.

Options Galore

Other chemical suppliers have more resources than other suppliers. With this prowess, they can offer more options for your business. They can be a great option for you if you’re looking for someone who can offer you various options down the line. If you’re looking for one chemical supplier to meet all of your needs, you may want to ask them about what they offer.

 

Backup Supplies

If you can, you probably want to find a chemical supplier who offers you more chemicals than you actually need. This is especially important if you’re looking to increase the size of your business down the line as you may need more chemicals later on. You want to find someone who can supply you with more chemicals as your demand for them increases.

What You Pay

When you’re looking at a potential chemical supplier, you want to make sure to check what the costs will be. Keep in mind that when it comes to the actual quality of pure chemicals, the quality never changes. Thankfully, as long as the operational costs are similar, prices for pure chemicals don’t usually fluctuate that much. So, the prices should be rather steady.

Shipping Is Another Cost

Compared to other things you might have shipped, chemicals tend to cost more cash. This is because chemicals tend to be hard to ship safely. Moreover, every chemical is different. The price for each chemical tends to vary from chemical to chemical. On another note, distance can be another factor that can increase cost. Perhaps you should consider finding a chemical supplier that’s close by.

Knows Your Industry

Besides simply finding someone who wants to for the earth and offers chemicals at a decent price, you may also want to look for chemical suppliers who know your industry. Whether you’re new to the industry or trying a new chemical, you probably want to ask someone who knows what they’re doing. Call us at Hi Valley Chemical today! We can help you figure out what chemicals you’ll need.

Guide to Purchasing Chemicals for School

 

Depending on your location, getting chemicals quickly may be your biggest problem. It’s not like you can go down to the grocery store and pick up bottles of glucose, acetic acid, or sodium bicarbonate… Actually, you can get all those things and more if you know the common names: corn syrup, white vinegar, and baking soda respectively. Even if you can’t find the right chemical locally, you can order it online and often get it within a couple of days. Drug stores and hardware stores also carry common chemicals used in science experiments at school. Other chemicals that can be found relatively easily include magnesium sulfate (epsom salt), acetone (nail polish remover), and calcium sulfate (plaster of Paris). (more…)

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