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Can You Use Bleach on Styrofoam? (Answered)

Styrofoam can also be referred to as ‘Blue board’. Styrofoam is generally used for thermal insulation, water barriers, and building insulation. 

Even though styrofoam is lightweight, it is a fantastic shock absorber, and an excellent option for an insulator as styrofoam is used for appliances and home insulation that need to be maintained.

You may have questions about using bleach on styrofoam in terms of cleaning it. Today we will be discussing all questions about cleaning styrofoam with bleach. 

Can you use bleach on styrofoam?

You can bleach on styrofoam. Using bleach is better than using other chemical elements. Chemical cleaners can cause the melting of styrofoam. Styrofoam losing its structure is rather a physical reaction. As it mostly consists of air, acetone can make it lose its structure.  

Styrofoam is considered harmful to the environment as it can not be recycled. Using chemical cleaners on styrofoam is strictly not recommended. Some of the dry cleaners can break down styrofoam.

Although, styrofoam can be easily broken with acetone. A small amount of acetone is good enough to dissolve chunks of foam, styrofoam beads, and even a styrofoam cup or container.

Acetone eats styrofoam-like sugar dissolved in warm water. It breaks the long chains of molecules of the foam and the air disappears. This causes the volume of the styrofoam to shrink gradually. 

Styrofoam is used as a packing material and an insulator. But unfortunately, styrofoam is prone to mold and mildew. In addition to that, storage allows dirt and dust to build up. This makes cleaning the styrofoam a necessity.

To clean styrofoam:

Cleaning styrofoam is a much necessary thing to do when it’s used for insulation for a long duration. Styrofoam is not dissolved when it comes to contact with water. As water is a polar solvent, it does not melt down styrofoam.

Therefore, water and bleach can be used to clean styrofoam. The bleach present in your house can be used to clean the styrofoam. A 25% bleach and water solution is good enough to give you clean styrofoam.

Using other adhesive or chemical cleaners is not recommended. They may contain elements that can cause the styrofoam to meltdown.

In styrofoam cup:

You cannot store bleach in a styrofoam cup. Dilated bleach may not be considered harmful. But direct contact with bleach may cause the styrofoam cup to lose its form. So, storing bleach or keeping bleach directly in a styrofoam cup is never considered a good option. 

It’s better not to put bleach in a styrofoam cup. 

Can you spray bleach on styrofoam? Is bleach safe on Styrofoam?

You can spray bleach on styrofoam. And yes, bleach is safe on styrofoam. However, the only thing you need to be sure about is dilating the bleach.

Bleach can be a great solution when it comes to cleaning dirt and mold. The ratio of the mixture needs to be one-liter water and ½ cup of bleach. This is an ideal solution to get rid of the mold.

You can spray this on the moldy area and let the foam dry in the sunlight. So, bleach is considered safe when used as a diluted solution.

The bleach used in household chores is not considered much destructing. So, using it on styrofoam or using it for cleaning purposes is absolutely fine. However, spraying other chemicals cleaners on styrofoam or plastic can result in damaging it.

Therefore, it’s best to avoid the usage of other chemical cleaners. And it is not recommended to spray these cleaners on styrofoam.  

Will bleach eat through styrofoam? Will bleach dissolve styrofoam?

Bleach will not eat through styrofoam. And bleach will also not dissolve styrofoam. Styrofoam has quite a strong structure. However, the usage of bleach will not cause any changes to the shape or formation of the styrofoam.

Styrofoam is generally used for the insulation of various homes and appliances. Due to long storage, these styrofoams are usually struck by mold and mildews. Bleach can be a great option when it comes to cleaning styrofoam.

Bleach does not eat through styrofoam. So, you are left with clean and mold-free insulation.

The only thing that dissolves styrofoam is acetone. Acetone dissolves styrofoam in the fastest way. Tons and tons of styrofoam beads can vanish in a small amount of acetone.

Acetone breaks the compound inside the styrofoam and this causes the styrofoam to lose its form. However, bleach does not break the compound inside the styrofoam. So, styrofoam does not break into bleach.

What does bleach do to styrofoam?

Bleach does not cause any harm to styrofoam, rather it cleans the styrofoam. Bleach does not damage styrofoam. Styrofoam is made of styrene. Styrene is a petroleum-based material.

The styrene is first refined and then extruded. Fortunately, bleach causes no changes to the physical or chemical structure of the styrofoam.

Although there are a few things that bleach does to styrofoam, which are mentioned below:

Bleach can be used to clean styrofoam:

Plastic cleaners or other chemical cleaners cannot be used on styrofoam. A 25% bleach-water solution can be used on styrofoam.

This will not cause any damage to the styrofoam. Spraying this solution on the styrofoam or simply wiping it with a piece of cloth will help you keep the styrofoam clean.

Chemical cleaners can melt styrofoam, but bleach does not. This is one of the few things that bleach does to styrofoam.     

Bleach can be used to remove mold and dirt:

Styrofoam is generally used for water insulation. Styrofoam does not absorb water or break it. However, over time mold and dirt can build up.

The growth of mold can cause your walls to be damaged. So, regular maintenance is required. A bleach-water wash is just perfect to remove all the mold and dirt. Add ½ a cup of bleach to one liter of water and make a solution.

You can use this solution to clean and keep mold out of your styrofoam insulation. 

What can you clean Styrofoam with?

There are multiple things you can clean your styrofoam with; bleach and vinegar are just two of them. Using vinegar and bleach to clean styrofoam is efficient. It does not hurt the styrofoam, and it is pocket friendly.  

Cleaning styrofoam with vinegar:

Using vinegar to clean styrofoam is great. White vinegar is an efficient way to remove stains that soap and water cannot remove. Mix a cup of white vinegar with water. Dip a rag or a piece of cloth into the mixture and clean. The stains should come off.

White vinegar is pretty handy when it comes to removing stains and preventing mold.

Cleaning styrofoam with bleach:

Using bleach is another way to clean styrofoam. Diluted bleach can be used as a spray, or a rag can be dipped in the water-bleach mixture to clean the styrofoam. Make sure the cloth you use is clean. Try to avoid the usage of harsh cleaning elements.

How to clean styrofoam?

Cleaning styrofoam is also required as it is used for the insulation of your house. If it is not kept clean it can damage your appliance or house.

Cleaning styrofoam is easy; here are a few steps you can follow to clean styrofoam:

Making a water and soap mixture:

First things first, take a bucket ¾ filled with lukewarm water. Add a few drops of dish soap or detergent and make a mixture. Do not use any type of harsh chemical to clean the styrofoam. It may result in breaking or dissolving the styrofoam.

Dipping the sponge and cleaning the styrofoam:

The next thing you would like to do is to dip a rag, or a sponge in the water until wet. And then gently clean the styrofoam using the wet sponge. Once you’re done cleaning the styrofoam, rinse it out with clean water.

Leaving the styrofoam to dry:

Spread a towel on a table or on the ground and place the styrofoam on the towel. Make sure the styrofoam gets enough sunlight. Leave them out for 2-3 hours to dry in the sun. This will ensure that the styrofoam is dried properly and prevent the rrturn of mold.

Final Thoughts

Bleach can be used to clean styrofoam. Using bleach to clean styrofoam will not cause any harm to the styrofoam. However, the bleach helps to keep the styrofoam protected from mold and mildews. Although using harsh or chemical cleaner can harm the styrofoam, bleach does no such thing.