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Desiccant Packs

Desiccant Packs

Desiccant Packs

Could the conception of desiccant packs ever be regarded as monumental? In 2009, British Science Museum curators selected 10 hugely significant inventions. They then asked the public to vote on which they considered the best invention of all time. The list boasted iconic feats of science, such as Stephenson’s Rocket, Penicillin, and Cooke and Wheatstones’s five-needle telegraph. Indisputably, these inventions have greatly influenced our past, present or will promote the future. However, because of their relevant lack of complexity, is it possible that commonplace objects, such as desiccant packs, were overlooked?

History of Desiccants

Despite their banal standing, desiccant packs have an exciting history. Silica gel, commonly used in the packs, has existed for around 370 years, so it has had ample opportunity to impact history. The horrific gas attacks of WW I were endured with the help of silica gel packs placed in gas mask canisters, enabling them to absorb the immobilizing vapors. Another impressive example is these packs were used to keep military gear and penicillin dry, during WW II. Deservedly, penicillin featured on the curators’ list of worthy inventions, so surely a contrivance which enables penicillin to remain effective, is warranted an honorable mention too? There is no doubt that innovations such as Reynold’s X-ray set and Crick and Watson’s DNA model have or will save lives, but desiccant packs have clearly preserved life too.

Desiccant Packs Role

Few contrivances compete with the versatility of desiccant packs. Everyone is familiar, and sometimes even slightly irritated, by the discovery of one of these unremarkable packets when they fall out of a new TV or pair of shoes. Generally, people throw them away, without giving them a second thought. However, these packs are recyclable and have an astonishing array of uses around the home. Believe it or not, silica gel packs can be employed to preserve crucial information and memories. Slip them into an envelope with essential documents and photos, and rescue them from the ravages of humidity or mildew. If that all important lifeline, the mobile phone, suffers a wet mishap, pull out the battery and SIM card; slip the phone into a container with several silica gel packs overnight, and the next morning you are ready to roll. These may not be singularly astounding instances, but if you stop and consider the range of applications as a whole, it is very apparent that desiccant packs can bring massive improvement into our lives.

Homemade Desiccant Packs

Desiccant Packs, often found in shoe boxes and made of silica gel, are a mystery for people who do not understand their purpose and benefit. These little packages pack a punch, reducing humidity in their environment by fifty percent and working in both low and high temperatures. Not only do desiccant packs absorb water, but by using the gel pack, packages are also relieved of odor-causing olefins, ammonia, aromatics and alcohol. Continue reading

Desiccant Packs FAQ

  • Is Silica Gel Poisonous?
    Silica Gel is non-toxic, however some types of Indicating Silica Gel may contain Cobalt Chloride which is toxic and is classified as a carcinogen.
  • Are Desiccant Packs re-usable?
    Most Desiccant Packs can be reused if taken care of properly. When a packet feels like its twice it’s weight it’s time to recharge it. Turn your oven to a low temperature and do not bother preheating. Lay each packet on a clean flat baking pan. Let the silica packs heat up for 15 minutes. Allow them to cool and they should be ready for reuse. You could also set the desiccant packs outside in hot direct sunlight for 24 hours and get the same result.
  • How much Desiccant do I need?
    It depends on a lot of factors, including volume of air space, the material to be desiccated, the type of desiccant, atmospheric conditions where the item is sealed, length of time required for protection etc.
  • What type of Desiccant do I need?
    You can refer to Desiccant Types article to determine which Desiccant is more eligible for your needs.