Uses for Muriatic Acid or Hydrochloric Acid

People Explain How They Use Muriatic Acid

Muriatic acid was used to clean the fountains of the Place De La Concorde In 1933.
Muriatic acid was used to clean the fountains of the Place De La Concorde In 1933. Keystone-France, Getty Images

Muriatic acid is another name for hydrochloric acid, which is one of the strong acids. The product is usually between 5% and 35% hydrochloric acid in water. Do you use muriatic acid or dilute hydrochloric acid as a household chemical? If so, what uses do you have for it? Readers answer this question:

Key Takeaways: Muriatic Acid Uses

  • Muriatic acid is a solution of hydrochloric acid (HCl) in water.
  • The acid has a distinctive pungent smell and is highly corrosive.
  • Muriatic acid has many commercial uses in addition to household uses. The acid reacts with other chemicals to remove stains and contaminants.

Uses for Muriatic/Hydrochloric Acid

Use it to lower the pH and total alkalinity of your swimming pool.

— frd

It worked

I used muriatic acid for tile cleaning a large number of tiles at once. It restores the tiles to a normal state.

— Ifediba Paul N

Hydrochloric/ Muratic Acid

I use hydrochloric acid using a 3:1 ratio with water (acid 3 : water 1). We just moved into a newly built house and the tiles in the bathroom are covered with grout, so I use the solution above to clean the grout off the tile. I also use the undiluted muratic acid to clean (with a sprayer) iron off the concrete around my pool.

— Anonymous

Make your own soldering flux

Dissolve pure zinc (e.g., from a dry-cell case) in muriatic acid to make your own acid flux for soldering. Several articles via Google will show how. Be sure to follow safety hints! NOT a project for kids!

—Guest tkjtkj

Disposal?

I had some old muriatic acid sitting in a room for more than a year. I noticed there was some crystals or something that looks like salt on the outside of the bottle. I wonder if it is in fact a salt. And what is the best way to dispose of it?

— forrest

muriatic acid

I use muriatic acid to melt concrete off our delivery trucks.

— joe

Sometimes you just have to use it.

Some stains just won't go away with anything else. An example is manganese staining a toilet bowl. I've got manganese in my water and the treatment tanks don't get all of it.

— Al

muriatic acid

I use muriatic acid or hydrochloric acid to clean the algae growth from the bottom of my boat. Be sure to wet the concrete well that's under and around your boat or you'll end up with with a ghost pattern of your boat. Keep the acids away from grass and aluminum.

— bob c

Cleans gunk off shower stalls, easily

It makes cleaning old shower stalls a breeze. But you have to be careful and wear gloves of course. Also, open a window before you start using it so you have proper ventilation. Now there's no need to try to endlessly scrub away stubborn gunk. Muriatic acid is the way to go when you have tough cleaning jobs.

— Evie

Are You Kidding?

Seriously? I wouldn't have that chemical in my house or my garage! It's too dangerous. What if a kid or a pet spilled it or something. There have to be better chemicals to use than acid.

— No Way

Concrete Cleaner

I use muriatic acid to clean the yuck off of concrete. It's also good to prep it for a sealant or other treatment.

— Acidzzz

Commercial Uses of Muriatic Acid

The most common household use of muriatic acid is as a descaling agent, however, the chemical has many other applications. Hydrochloric acid is used in the chemical industry to make polyvinyl chloride, which in turn is used to produce several types of plastic. It is used to synthesize and purify both organic and inorganic compounds, regenerate ion exchange columns, perform titrations for chemical analysis, and control pH. The acid finds use in the food industry in the production of gelatin, fructose, citric acid, lysine, aspartame, and hydrolyzed vegetable protein. It is also a food additive used to control acidity. Hydrochloric acid is used in steel pickling, leather production. In the petroleum industry, hydrochloric acid may be injected into a rock formation to make the rock more porous and stimulate oil production.

Household uses include cleaning mortar from bricks, de-scaling mineral deposits from kettles, and removing metallic stains.

Gastric acid in the human digestive tract makes use of hydrochloric acid to denature proteins and protect against pathogens.