Effect of Various Common Household Cleaners on Fabric Puncture Resistance


Purpose

The purpose of this experiment was to determine the effect of various common household cleaners on fabric puncture resistance.

I became interested in this idea because I thought it would be fun to see what some household cleaners do to clothes.

The information gained from this experiment could help people be more careful when using household cleaners.

Hypothesis

My first hypothesis was that both polyester and cotton treated with chlorine bleach would have less puncture resistance than untreated cotton and polyester.

My second hypothesis was that both polyester and cotton treated with ammonia would be weaker than untreated polyester and cotton.

My third hypothesis was that ammonia wouldn’t weaken the fabric as much as chlorine bleach.

I based my hypotheses on an article in The World Book Encyclopedia. It says,” chlorine bleaches are made for cleaning tough things such as driveways.”

Science Fair Projects Experiments

Experiment Design

• Fabrics used in test

• Cleaners (concentration and type used within each treatment group)

• Amount of cleaner added to the fabric

• Where the cleaner goes on the fabric

• Size of fabric pieces

• The scale to measure force

• The wood frame to hold cloth

The manipulated variable was the household cleaner applied to the cloth.

The responding variable was the force it took to puncture the fabric.

To measure the responding variable I used a bathroom scale to determine the force applied to the cloth, recording the force at the time the cloth was punctured.

Materials  
                   

Quantity 

Item Description
1
scale
1
wood frame
1
sq. yard of cotton
1
sq. yard of polyester
6oz.
bleach
1  
wood puncture rod
6oz
ammonia
2
pairs of rubber gloves
lab goggles
1
paint mask
“C” clamps
lab coat
1
square yard of plywood
2
glass bowls
1       
glass measuring cup


Procedures

1. Build a wood frame to hold fabric pieces for testing.

a. Cut two 12in. by 12in. squares from plywood.

b. Draw a 9in. by 9in. square centered 1.5 in. from each edge inside the plywood squares.

c. Drill a hole in each of the four corners of the inner squares.

d. Then cut out both inner squares.

e. Now use four clamps to hold the fabric pieces tightly sandwiched between the two halves of the wood frame.

2. Glue the two cut out 9 x 9 inner squares together in a sandwich.

3. Drill a 1 in. diameter circle in the center of the two glued together squares.

4. Then glue a 1 in. diameter rod about 5 in. tall into the drilled hole.

5. Next cut nine 12 in. by 12 in. squares out of cotton cloth and do the same thing with polyester cloth.

6. Now you have to soak the fabrics.

a. Place one piece of cotton in a glass dish.

b. Use the glass measuring cup to measure 180 ml of ammonia and poor it onto the cotton.

c. Let the cotton soak for 5 minutes

d. Pull the cloth sample out and sit on newspaper to dry

e. Repeat steps 6.a–d two more times with cotton and three times with polyester.

f. Then repeat steps 6.a–e with bleach instead of ammonia.

7. Place the puncture rod on the scale.

8. Once all fabric is dry place one piece of the non-soaked (control group) polyester in the wood frame and tighten the four clamps,

9. Using caution, apply increasing downward force to the fabric in the frame against the wood rod.

10. Carefully watch the scale readout.  When the rod pops through the fabric record the weight the scale shows.

11. Repeat steps 8-10 with the rest of the non-soaked polyester and cotton.

12. Repeat steps 8-11 but with the ammonia group.

13. Repeat steps 8-11 but with the bleach group.

Results

The original purpose of this experiment was to determine the effect of various common household cleaners on fabric puncture resistance.

The results of the experiment were for the controlled group, polyester punctured at about 90.7 kg. and cotton punctured at about 31 kg. For the ammonia group, polyester punctured at about 90.7 kg. and cotton punctured at about 28.7 kg. For the bleach group, polyester punctured at about 81.6 kg. and cotton punctured at about 13.6 kg.

Conclusion

My first hypothesis was that both polyester and cotton treated with chlorine bleach would have less puncture resistance than untreated cotton and polyester.

The results indicate that my first hypothesis should be accepted because both types of fabric were weaker when treated with bleach.
My second hypothesis was that both polyester and cotton treated with ammonia would be weaker than untreated polyester and cotton.

The results indicate that my second hypothesis should be rejected because ammonia didn’t affect polyester. It did weaken the cotton.

My third hypothesis was that ammonia wouldn’t affect the fabric as much as chlorine bleach.

The results indicate that my third hypothesis should be accepted because bleach affected both polyester and cotton and ammonia didn’t.

Because of the results of this experiment, I wonder if soaking the fabric longer in the cleaners would have affected the fabric more.

If I were to conduct this project again I would use an industrial tensile strength machine so my data would be more accurate. I would also use a weaker fabric than polyester, like silk. I would also add another household cleaner. I would also add another natural fabric like wool. I would especially do more trials.

Researched by -- Zach F.

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