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Sodium silicate

Sodium silicate (Water glass)

Sodium silicate solution is produced by melting solid silicate in autoclaves.

It is divided into two main types:

  • alkaline silicates with a SiO2: Na2O ratio of 1.6 -:- 2;
  • neutral silicates with a SiO2 : Na2O ratio of 2 -:- 3.5.

Alkaline silicates have a high but transient alkalinity, do not damage textile fibers, are excellent negative corrosion catalysts, which is why they are the main components of a large number of detergents and preparations for degreasing and removing deposits from metal and machine parts.

Neutral silicates are used as raw materials for the production of precipitated silica, metal silicates and refractories. Silicates with a ratio of three or more are excellent binders for bonding paper and paperboard. They are also used to produce waterproof concrete, to prepare acid-resistant screeds and fire-resistant materials.


Anti-corrosion agent, buffer agent, anti-bleaching stabilizer, deflocculating agent, wetting agent, phosphate substitute, viscosity controlling agent, stain suspending agent, emulsifier, salt deflocculant, corrosion inhibitor, water softener or as a surfactant


Stabilizer in bleaching with hydrogen peroxide, anti-deposition agent in decolorization of waste paper, adhesive in the production of corrugated board, spools and labels


Bleaching stabilizer with hydrogen peroxide, buffering agent in fabric dyeing processes.


Quartz source in the production of: precipitated silica, silicasols, silica gels, zeolites for detergents, used as a catalyst and molecular sieve, suspending agent in the production of synthetic clays and dispersing agent in the production of titanium dioxide, paints, varnishes, etc.


Hardening additive for the production of sand molds and casting cores for non-ferrous and ferrous castings, hardening additive for the production of welding electrodes.


Hardening additive, anti-corrosion and resistant substance in the production of refractory and acid-resistant cement, shotcrete, bricks, insulation panels, cement additives, glazing, paints, coatings, soil thickening (cementing), concrete hardening, compaction of sandy soils, impregnation of wood and stone, etc.

Water glass is a useful binder for solids such as vermiculite and perlite. When mixed with the aforementioned lightweight aggregates, water glass can be used to make rigid, high-temperature insulating boards used for refractories, passive fire protection, and high-temperature insulation, such as pipe insulation assembly applications.

When mixed with finely ground mineral powders, such as vermiculite powder (which is a common scrap from the exfoliation process), high temperature adhesives can be produced


Binder tableting, production of briquettes and blocks and granulation.


Waste stabilization with water glass is suitable for various types of toxic dust (including radioactive dust) and sludge (it solidifies or dries faster), making the waste more suitable for transportation and storage.

Flocculation accelerator, anti-corrosion agent, buffer agent. Water glass is used as a cleaning agent in wastewater treatment plants. It will bind to heavier molecules and remove them from the water.

Water glass has been used in magical crystal garden toys since the 1980s. When the water glass is combined with a selection of different metals in solution, the water glass will cause the metals to precipitate. Each metal will precipitate separately, causing a different colored stalagmite.


Water glass (sodium silicate) can be used to seal the head gasket. Instead of removing the head, a jar of "liquid glass" is poured into the radiator and allowed to circulate.

It is injected through the radiator water into the hot spot of the engine. This technique works because at 93°C sodium silicate loses water molecules to form a very powerful sealant that will not melt below 815°C. This approach is often used by eager used car salesmen to cover up a worn head gasket.

A sodium silicate head gasket repair can last up to two years and even longer in some cases. The effect will be almost instantaneous and the steam from the radiator water will stop the exhaust within minutes of application.

This repair only works if water is lost to the cylinder or water in contact with air and where the sodium silicate reaches the temperature "conversion" at 93 °C.


Water glass is used as a deflocculant in clay slurries, preventing the slurry from settling, which in turn enables uniform layering. In the inorganic technology, water glass is used to reduce the viscosity of the suspensions.


Water glass is used as an emulsifier in oil refining.


Water glass is used to reinforce sandy terrain, which increases its stability, which is required in the construction of roads, tunnels, canals or dams, while it is also used to stabilize landslides.


Water glass is used as a binder in paper, textiles, cardboard (packaging), construction (grinding wheels) and other industries.


The added water glass improves the heat resistance of refractory putties and increases their ability to expand, which in turn means better fixation of structural elements.


Water glass is used as a binder and fire retardant in non-flammable, lightweight thermal insulation panels that are used in trains, aircraft and boats.


Water glass is used for polishing pastes and wood varnishes, reduces the dustiness of gravel roads, is used to seal cracks in concrete pipes, to improve the yield of vegetable oils, to purify acids.