Techspray Duster (commonly called "canned air", "compressed air duster", and "dusting gas") blows away dust, microscopic contaminants, lint, metallic oxide deposits and other soils that can damage sensitive electronics. When these contaminants get in the way of vents or fans within the device, they create a build-up which leads to overheating and/or shortages.
Techspray dusters do not contain additives that can contaminate sensitive electronics. Retail dusters generally have bitterant added to prevent huffing. This same bitterant can lead to unwanted and potentially harmful residues that can build up over time.
Choose the air duster propellant that best meets your needs:
For more information, check out our Everything You Need to Know About Air Duster …But Were Afraid to Ask.
The can of duster must be held in an upright position when spraying. Do not tilt can more than 40 degrees during spraying operation or shake during use. Before use, press actuator to clear valve of any liquid product. Extension tube can be used to remove dust in tight areas. Use short bursts to prevent cooling of can.
There are different options for duster propellant: HFC-134a – Nonflammable, most common for industrial applications when spraying energized circuits because of the risk of a spark lighting a flammable material. It is under close scrutiny because it has a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of 1400, so 1400 times the impact of CO2. HFC-152a – Most commonly available duster in consumer retail because it is less expensive than HFC-134a. It is flammable, and will ignite when concentrated (i.e. in liquid form) and exposed to a spark or flame. HFO-1234ze – This is a newer, nonflammable material introduced in the last 10-years as a very low GWP alternative (<1) to HFC-134a. It is non-flammable and is almost indistinguishable from HFC-134a when sprayed, but unfortunately at a much higher price.
Avoid cheap retail dusters that contain bitterant if you are working on sensitive electronics. Many retail dusters have bitterant added to prevent huffing. When duster is used in the home, there is concern that the material will be purposely inhaled (called “huffing” or “dusting”) by minors, which can sometimes lead to tragic consequences. To avoid this, bitterant is added to make the duster taste bad. This same bitterant can lead to unwanted and potentially harmful residues on sensitive surfaces like electronic circuit boards.
The duster vapors themselves do not produce much of a triboelectric charge. There isn’t a non-contaminating additive that can be added because it would just stay at the bottom of the can (the vapors are at the top, which are released when you open the valve).
The liquid propellant can produce a charge, and the plastic actuator can become charged as well. There are a few solutions to consider:
This phenomenon occurs due to the expansion of the compressed refrigerant liquid as it dispenses through the aerosol valve and flashes to a gas. If the aerosol is operated for a long period, frost may form on the can because it is freezing the surrounding water vapor from the air. If it is collecting on the material to be cleaned, the operator is dispensing for too long of a period or is dispensing it too close to the material. The frost will evaporate and leave no residue. However, particulate matter blown onto a sensitive surface may cause damage due to the high pressure of the duster if dispensed too closely to that surface.
If the can and valving is intact and undamaged, it will not leak or spoil, so can sit on a shelf for as long as 10 years.
Internal pressure, as measured in pounds per square inch (PSI), depends on the propellant used in the duster: HFC-134a - 71, HFC-152a - 63, HFO-1234ze - 47.
Yes, if liquid refrigerant is expelled on comes in contact with your skin. Most duster contain refrigerant that is liquid when held under pressure. The goal of duster is to spray the vapor not the liquid, so the valving is designed to capture the vapor from the top of the can. When you shake a can, turn it, or flip it upside-down, you can introduce the liquid refrigerant to the mix.
Most duster contain refrigerant that is liquid when held under pressure. The goal of duster is to spray the vapor not the liquid, so the valving is designed to capture the vapor from the top of the can. When you shake a can, turn it, or flip it upside-down, you can introduce the liquid refrigerant to the mix. Careful, because that is cold enough to cause frost bite and damage sensitive electronics. Vortex 360 (part #1697-8S) is designed to spray upside-down without expelling liquid refrigerant.
It can if used improperly. Aerosol dusters contain pressurized refrigerant, not breathable air as the common names (e.g. “canned air”, “compressed air”) for it suggests. Keep the cans away from high heat and flames, and avoid puncturing the can. See the SDS (safety data sheet) for more specifics.