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Subject: Lysol


From: Walter Henry <whenry>
Date: Tuesday, November 17, 1998
Lysol [with or without (R)] has been around for a very long time and
the formulation has changed many times (see
<URL:> for an interesting historical
aside concerning Lehn and Fink, Inc's Lysol from the late 1920's).
Without the (R), as a generic term, the dictionary lists it as
carbolic acid (see Glenda Steven's posting on the subject). Lysol(R)
is a product of Reckitt and Coleman, Inc., which is located in New
Jersey, and also Kingston upon Hall, U.K. The product line, of
course, is varied, with a range of disinfectant sprays and liquids,
and household cleansers. I haven't seen "hospital grade" Lysol on
the retail shelves in the U.S. for quite a while, and have no info
about its current composition.

Some of the current products you're likely to encounter (in the U.S.
at least) are

    Lysol(R) Brand II Disinfectant Spray

        1.  Alkyl(50% C14, 40% C12, 10% C16) dimethyl ammonium
            saccharinate                        :      0.1%
        2.  Ethanol                             :     79.0%
        3.  Inert ingredients:                  :     20.9%

    Lysol(R) Brand disinfectant Deodorizing Cleaner

        1.  n-Alkyl(50% C14, 40% C12, 10% C16) dimethyl benzyl
            ammonium chlorides                  :   0.0800%
        2.  Octyl decyl dimethyl ammonium
            chloride                            :   0.1250%
        3.  Dioctyl dimethyl ammonium
            chloride                            :   0.0625%
        4.  Didecyl dimethyl ammonium
            chloride                            :   0.0625%
        5.  Inert ingredients                   :  98.9500%

There have indeed been forms of Lysol(R) contain o-phenyl phenol. A
1996 MSDS from Reckitt & Coleman Inc. for "Lysol Phenolic
Disinfectant Cleaner gives (for liquid, gallon bottle, a clear green
liquid, a form I don't think I've ever seen):

    Isopropyl Alcohol (SARA 313)                :     4.04%
    O-Benzyl-P-Chlorophenol                     :     7.24%
    2-Phenylphenol (SARA 313)                   :     2.23%

(2-Phenylphenol is a synonym for o-phenyl phenol).

FWIW, Conservation Information Network's Materials Database (MCIN),
which is no longer being maintained but is still searchable by
subscribers, has an entry only for the spray. The record seems not
to be dated, so could be more than 10 years old (MCIN started in
1987). It gives the contents for "Sterling Drug Ltd., Lysol
Disinfectant Spray, Scent II" as

    O-Phenylphenol                                   0.100%
    Anhydrous Ethanol                               67.724%
    N-Alkyl N-Ethyl Morpholinium Ethyl Sulfates      0.035%

and says that it is "N[o]t in use in conservation at present"

                  Conservation DistList Instance 12:46
                 Distributed: Monday, November 23, 1998
                       Message Id: cdl-12-46-004
Received on Tuesday, 17 November, 1998

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