Anti-spatter agents: unbeatable, (non-)flammable?

Posted by Florian Görlitz on Jun 7, 2021 11:22:40 AM

Flammable vs. non-flammable anti-spatter sprays

Wherever welding takes place, weld spatter also occurs. During MIG welding and MAG welding, spatter formation is particularly high. Although it is possible to reduce the formation of weld spatter in these processes through process optimisation, it can never be avoided completely. Since weld spatter partially sticks, a good preparation is required, because it can be found almost everywhere: on and in the front end of the torch including the gas nozzle, on the contact tip and contact tip holder, on the workpiece as well as on the clamping element, if used. However, by applying a good sprayable anti-splatter agent, which is suitable for all areas, the majority of the welding spatter can be kept away or easily removed.

There are principally significant differences among the anti-spatter agents offered by specialist welding shops. Some adhere well, but are very difficult to remove and therefore only suitable for spraying on gas nozzles and the like. Others adhere only slightly, can be applied well to the workpiece, but drain off too quickly from the wear parts. In principle, an anti-spatter agent for the front end of the welding torch is needed, and another one specifically for the workpiece, which ideally can also be sprayed onto the clamping elements. Thus, numerous spray cans with different welding protection sprays accumulate at the workplace, when in fact it should also be possible to have a single anti-spatter spray for all parts that covers the following requirements:

  1. Protects against adhesion of weld spatter on the welding torch, workpiece and clamping element
  2. Can be easily removed from the workpiece
  3. Withstands the »hot« conditions at the workplace

One thing in advance: Most anti-spatter agents on the market cannot fulfil all three aspects together.

Why do so many swear by flammable anti-spatter agents?

Basically, it is a contradiction: Most anti-spatter sprays on the market are highly flammable. »Extremely flammable aerosol«, »May burst if heated« or »Keep away from heat, hot surfaces, sparks, open flames and other ignition sources« are statements on cans of anti-spatter sprays that are thought-provoking. Of course, these cans are labelled accordingly, because they are used where the proverbial heat is on. Yet the question inevitably arises: Why are such anti-adhesive products for welding, which are dangerous for the user, deliberately sold into an environment that is teeming with sparks, heat and sources of ignition? Why do so many users still buy flammable anti-spatter sprays?


Understandably, it is difficult in general to part with habits and the tried and tested. Those who have been using a flammable welding protection spray for decades and appreciate its properties in application and the results are usually reluctant to get involved with something new.

However, the requirements with regard to safety and environmental protection have meanwhile developed so that non-flammable ones can often replace flammable anti-spatter sprays very well. At best, it should be possible to do completely without them. Perhaps the regulations will be tightened so that flammable sprays will be generally prohibited for welding, as is the case in many areas of container construction or shipbuilding. Moreover, it should be in everyone's own interest to think about tomorrow and the day after tomorrow, for example, even during the daily routine in terms of health and environment.

The following overview compares the relevant differences between flammable and non-flammable anti-spatter sprays:


Flammable anti-spatter sprays

Non-flammable anti-spatter sprays



Nitrogen/carbon dioxide

Spraying properties

Fine nebulisation

Fine droplet formation

Main ingredient


Release agent

Transport specialities

Dangerous goods

Only conditions for transport of pressurised gas cylinders, if in form of spray cans

Flammable anti-spatter sprays are filled in spray cans, together with a propellant gas – usually propane/butane. The actual ingredients of the anti-spatter agent are dissolved in this propellant gas, have a low surface tension and are distributed very finely as a spray mist on the part to be sprayed. This fine nebulisation ensures very good wetting, which the welder perceives as a great advantage for the application.

Non-flammable anti-spatter sprays work on a water-soluble basis. With these water-soluble sprays, the spray mist is formed by the droplets in the propellant gas – in this case consisting of nitrogen or carbon dioxide – which are conveyed but represent a »foreign object« in the propellant gas. They are not absorbed by the propellant and retain their structure with their surface tension. In conclusion: This means that the spray mist is not very fine, but the wetting is correct.

Although there are non-flammable anti-spatter sprays for welding that do not use water-based additives, these usually contain trichloromethane and this substance is highly carcinogenic.

On the rise: non-flammable anti-spatter agents  

Developments in the field of welding sprays are advancing with great strides. For decades, ABICOR BINZEL has been very successfully selling the flammable Super Pistolenspray with propane/butane as propellant. With the Super Pistolenspray NF – NF stands for non-flammable – we have introduced an anti-spatter spray to the market that guarantees maximum safety for the process and the welder alike due to its non-flammability.


Compared to other welding release agents on the market, the Super Pistolenspray NF also has the great advantage of being three times more productive. Its main ingredient is not the propellant but the anti-spatter agent. It is suitable for the front end of the welding torch including the gas nozzle, contact tip and contact tip holder as well as for the workpiece and the clamping elements used. Thus, it could be said: one for all, because many other welding sprays are only suitable for the workpiece OR the welding torch. Moreover, like all ABICOR BINZEL anti-spatter agents, it is silicone-free and easy to remove, which means that after simply washing it off with water, the workpiece can be directly processed again.

NF – the outstanding BINZEL standard

There are guidelines and standards for process safety as well as for health protection when using anti-spatter sprays. One is the GHS, the Globally Harmonised System, in which a classification is made according to individual raw materials of the overall product with regard to hazardous substance labelling. Another is the test according to the Aerosol Directive (Council Directive 75/324/EEC on the approximation of the laws of the member states relating to aerosol dispensers), in which the non-flammability of the anti-spatter agent as a whole is verified by a flame spray test and a barrel test. The ABICOR BINZEL NF standard even exceeds these directives, because the NF marking is only assigned to anti-spatter agents and coolants which have proven their non-flammability in additional standardised welding tests under various practical conditions.

The price question: What does the Super Pistolenspray NF cost?

A direct comparison of can prices shows the 400 ml can of Super Pistolenspray NF to be slightly more expensive than the same amount of the tried and tested, flammable Super Pistolenspray. But only at first glance and without looking closely: Super Pistolenspray NF has a higher proportion of pure anti-spatter agent! And thus achieves three times the range. This is also directly apparent from the weight when taking the two cans in hand and comparing them – Super Pistolenspray NF is heavier, because the anti-spatter agent is the main ingredient of this product. For cans with flammable anti-spatter spray, the lighter propellant propane/butane is the main ingredient and, because it is liquefied, must be added to the contents in millilitres (ml). The comparison becomes visible during spraying at the latest, when the Super Pistolenspray NF sprays and sprays and sprays ... while the can with the flammable spray has long been empty.


Super Pistolenspray NF therefore means three times more range per can, three times less storage volume required and three times less costs!


Flammable anti-spatter sprays

Super Pistolenspray NF

High productivity


Application on front end



Application on workpiece


Application on clamping elements



Easy to remove


Environmental friendliness


Suitable for use in closed rooms


*partly possible

If you would like to find out more about the ABICOR BINZEL NF standard and non-flammable anti-spatter sprays, you will get further information on our website.

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Topics: Welding Chemicals