Among the sodium borates, borax decahydrate shows the greatest tendency to cake. However, it can be successfully shipped and handled in bulk if proper precautions are taken.
Borax decahydrate TG has a No. 8 U.S. sieve specification, with a mesh size of 2.36 mm and a retained guarantee of 0.1% or less. These specifications, as well as the product’s chemical properties, are determined by U.S. Borax analytical methods.
Dissolved in water, borax decahydrate hydrolyzes, producing a mildly alkaline solution that can neutralize acids. It also combines with strong alkalis to form compounds of lower pH. The relatively constant pH of borax decahydrate solutions makes it an excellent buffering agent.
Borax decahydrate is chemically stable under normal storage conditions, although it will slowly lose water of crystallization if exposed to a warm, dry atmosphere. For borax decahydrate EP, NF, and SP grades we recommend NOT storing in a controlled atmosphere below 60% of relative humidity. Conversely, exposure to a humid atmosphere can cause caking. When storing the product, avoid wide fluctuations in temperature and humidity and ensure that the packaging is not damaged.
The product’s solubility in water; solubility in solvents such as glycerol, ethylene glycol, methanol, and acetone; and the product’s pH as compared to that of common alkalis can be found in the product data sheet.