Man dry ice blasting

Commercial cleaning with dry ice has many benefits. There’s very little clean-up, the process is quick and it thoroughly removes tough grease, dirt and other contaminants when applied with the right pressure. Professionals who work in commercial industries are probably familiar with sandblasting and laser cleaning. Dry ice blasting is often a better choice for some applications.

Because of this method’s value, Corporate Clean Services offers dry ice blasting in the Grand Rapids, Michigan, area for commercial companies. Keep reading to learn if dry ice blasting is the best cleaning option for your facility.

FAQs About Dry Ice Blasting

The following questions frequently come up for professionals who are unfamiliar with dry ice blasting.

What Is Dry Ice Blasting?

The process of dry ice blasting is simple. Trained professionals direct a stream of solid carbon dioxide, also known as dry ice, and compressed air onto a surface at high speeds. When the solid particles of dry ice impact the surface being cleaned, they quickly loosen and remove debris like grease, grime and rust.

You can adjust the speed and pressure of the dry ice particles depending on the project and its needs. Different nozzle options allow you to choose how much area to blast at once. Professionals blasting with dry ice wear safety gear to ensure they’re protected during the process.

How Does Dry Ice Blasting Work?

Dry ice blasting combines several powerful factors to quickly clean surfaces. First, the temperature of the carbon dioxide freezes the coating you want to scour away. In extremely low temperatures, materials on a solid surface are more likely to shatter under pressure.

Grease, rust and other unwanted surface contaminants are also broken apart by the speed of the carbon dioxide particles. Once these materials are cracked, dry ice is able to get underneath them and expand, quickly blasting them off the surface you’re cleaning.

This combination of speed, temperature and expansive properties makes dry ice blasting effective on a range of contaminants.

How Is Dry Ice Blasting Different From Sandblasting?

Both dry ice blasting and sandblasting can clean tough grit from surfaces. However, there are a few important differences to consider:

  • Abrasion: Sandblasting roughs up the surface it’s cleaning. This is great for dealing with rust since you need a deep clean. Other surfaces may need to be sanded after being sandblasted. Dry ice blasting doesn’t have any abrasive qualities.
  • Clean-up: When you use dry ice blasting, there’s minimal clean-up — you just need to pick up the bits you’ve blasted off the surface. The carbon dioxide evaporates after striking the surface. Sandblasting produces piles of blasting dust you’ll have to clean up after finishing the project.

Both dry ice blasting and sandblasting are good choices, depending on the goal you’re trying to achieve. Although they both clean surfaces, they complete the job in different ways and with slightly different results.

Man in protective gear dry ice blasting outside

Does Dry Ice Blasting Remove Rust?

Does dry ice cleaning remove rust? The answer is yes and no. When you’re dealing with surface rust, dry ice will effectively remove it. However, dry ice doesn’t have abrasive properties and won’t change the texture of the material you’re treating. If rust has eaten into the material, you may need to use sandblasting to fully remove it.

To decide which option is best, consider the texture of the material you want to clean. Is it mostly smooth underneath the rust? Then cleaning with dry ice should work well. However, if it’s extremely pitted and roughed up, sandblasting is the better option.

Can You Clean Glass With Dry Ice?

Dry ice can sometimes break glass, but not always. It is effective because it uses force and speed to clean materials. If you apply too much force to the glass, it can crack and break. Before cleaning glass with dry ice, research how much force the glass can reasonably take.

If a contaminant is very stuck on the glass, you may not be able to exert enough pressure to remove it without also damaging the surface. In these cases, try letting the glass soak in a mixture of warm water and soap until the grime, grease or other residue loosens.

Can You Use Dry Ice Blasting to Clean Wood?

Yes, you can safely use dry ice blasting to remove paint, odors and other contaminants from wood. Depending on the condition of the wood, it may be very hard or very soft. Softer woods may have a slightly rough surface after dry ice blasting and need to be sanded before they’re refinished. 

When compared with sandblasting wood, dry blasting creates less mess. It doesn’t create piles of dust that need to be removed after you finish your project. Instead of removing paint or stain through abrasion, it uses a combination of low temperatures, expansion and pressure to clean the wood.  

Can Dry Ice Blasting Remove Paint?

Yes, dry ice blasting is a good option for removing paint. As paint ages, it’s less concretely attached to its surface and easier to remove. If you’re trying to take off new paint or the paint you want to remove is thick, the process will take longer. 

You can adjust the pressure and speed of the dry ice particles to suit your project so they remove paint as quickly and thoroughly as possible. Dry ice blasting is a good option for removing paint if you don’t want to damage the underlying surface. 

How Long Does Dry Ice Blasting Take?

The amount of time it takes to use dry ice blasting depends on the material you’re blasting and the substance you want to remove. Here are some factors that can impact speed: 

  • Type of material
  • Age of material
  • Thickness of contaminant

Because dry ice blasting doesn’t create a mess, it’s faster than other stripping or cleaning methods like sandblasting. The only tools you need to get work done are safety equipment, dry ice and the blaster. 

What Industries Are Best Suited for Dry Ice Blasting?

Is dry ice cleaning safe for cars? Yes — the automotive industry frequently uses dry ice blasting to remove rust, grease and grime from vehicles. Examples of other industries that use dry ice blasting include: 

  • Aerospace
  • Petroleum
  • Printing

Dry ice blasting is also a great fit for commercial cleaning services. It offers efficiency and thoroughness without damaging the underlying substrate or causing additional mess. It’s a safe way to remove grease, grime, rust and other contaminants in a commercial setting.

Experience the Difference With Dry Ice Cleaning

At Corporate Clean Services, we complete commercial cleaning projects that exceed expectations in Grand Rapids and the surrounding area. We offer services like restorative floor cleaning, warehouse wall cleaning, carpet cleaning, tile and grout cleaning and more. 

Clients love our dry ice blasting service because it’s environmentally friendly, nontoxic and highly effective. Dry ice blasting is a good choice for machinery that you don’t want to disassemble and for surfaces that won’t handle abrasive blasting well. Our cleaning experts have been trained to use this method by Cold Jet, the leader in dry ice blasting technology.

Get your free estimate today!

Experience the difference with dry ice blasting