Help center

Tergazyme vs. Alconox

Tergazyme and Alconox are two leading brands of ultrasonic cleaner detergents that you can use in your shop's ultrasonic cleaner to more thoroughly clean tattoo equipment and piercing tools before autoclaving them. We discuss the differences between these two types of detergent so you can pick the best one to use in your tattoo and piercing shop.


What Is Tergazyme?Tergazyme Ultrasonic Cleaner Detergent

Tergazyme is a powdered, enzyme-active ultrasonic cleaner detergent that's used to clean a wide variety of things from hospital equipment to tattoo and piercing tools. It's also authorized by the USDA for use in federally-inspected meat and poultry plants. This corrosion-inhibited formula is recommended for use on a variety of materials, including glass, metal, stainless steel, porcelain, ceramic, plastic, rubber, and fiberglass. If it's rinsed off immediately after cleaning, Tergazyme can also be used on softer metals like copper, aluminum, zinc, and magnesium.

Here are some of the key benefits of using Tergazyme with your shop's ultrasonic cleaner to clean tattoo and piercing supplies:

  • Tergazyme is concentrated to save you money.
  • It's biodegradable and readily disposable.
  • Tergazyme is gentler than other cleaners, replacing corrosive acids and hazardous solvents.
  • It contains a Protease enzyme that will remove proteinaceous soil, tissue, blood, bodily fluids, grease, fats, and more from equipment.
  • Tergazyme is free-rinsing, which means you'll get reliable results when you use it to clean your equipment. No interfering residues will be left behind.

For additional information about Tergazyme, read the Tergazyme Data Sheet and the Tergazyme MSDS.


What Is Alconox?

Alconox is a critical-cleaning detergent for laboratory, healthcare and industrial applications. Like Tergazyme, Alconox is a white granular powder with little or no odor. This corrosion-inhibited formula can be used to clean glass, metal, stainless steel, porcelain, ceramic, plastic, rubber, and fiberglass. It can also be used on soft metals like copper, aluminum, zinc, and magnesium if rinsed promptly. Here are some of Alconox's many benefits:

  • You only need 2 tablespoons of concentrated Alconox per gallon of water for cleaning, whereas you'd need 2.5 tablespoons of Tergazyme for the same amount of water.
  • Like Tergazyme, Alconox will remove soil, grit, grime, grease, oils, blood, tissue, and more from tattoo and piercing tools.
  • Although corrosion testing may be advisable, particularly on tools made of softer metal, Alconox is typically non-corrosive.
  • You can use Alconox to clean tools in your ultrasonic cleaner, or use it to hand-wash tattoo and piercing instruments.

To learn more about Alconox, read the Alconox MSDS.


Alconox Ultrasonic Cleaner DetergentHow Do Alconox & Tergazyme Differ From Each Other?

Tergazyme and Alconox ultrasonic cleaner detergents share a lot of similarities. They're both generally non-corrosive and do not leave a residue behind, particularly when washed off immediately after you use either of these products to clean your tattoo and piercing instruments. They both remove the same types of residues, they're intended to be diluted in water in fairly similar amounts (you need slightly less Alconox than Tergazyme per gallon of water, though), and they can be used to clean generally the same types of materials. So how do Alconox and Tergazyme differ from each other?

There are two main difference between Tergazyme and Alconox. First, Alconox is a slightly more cost-effective ultrasonic cleaner detergent. You need less to create the same 1% strength solution, and it costs slightly less per pound. Second, Tergazyme is a somewhat gentler cleaner than Alconox. The difference isn't drastic, but Tergazyme does have fewer hazardous ingredients in it than Alconox (3 vs. 6). That said, these are both fairly safe, non-corrosive detergents that you can use with ultrasonic cleaners or to wash instruments by hand. To protect yourself when using either detergent, wear gloves and avoid breathing in or ingesting any of the powdered cleaner.


Which Ultrasonic Cleaner Detergent Is Best for Your Shop?

The answer to this question is mostly a matter of personal preference and your budget. If you need a more aggressive cleaner that yields more ultrasonic baths per pound of cleaner, then you should use Alconox. If you want a gentler detergent that's only slightly more expensive, use Tergazyme. Before making a decision as to which detergent to use, you should thoroughly read the MSDS for each product to see which one you're most comfortable using in your tattoo and piercing shop's ultrasonic cleaner, too. Always practice caution when cleaning with detergent and avoid unnecessary direct contact with it. If you utilize these detergents carefully, you're sure to be pleased with the results that both yield.

Shop for Ultrasonic Cleaner Detergents