# Is there a pH range for "neutral" detergents?

There exist many home made pH scales like these

But do any of you know if there is an "official" scale that defines if a neutral detergent is 7 sharp or within a range _______?

• Strictly speaking, anything other than pH 7 is not neutral, because it has an imbalance in the ratio of $\ce{H+}$ to $\ce{OH-}$. Nov 6 '14 at 8:12
• I know that chemically this is the definition :-) Nov 6 '14 at 8:16
• Well, I would argue that chemically$=$officially Nov 6 '14 at 8:20
• I'm more thinking like public affairs or expert panel that is generally accepted as giving guidelines. Like some EU group og FDA declaration. What I could find was GSA gsa.gov/portal/content/113006 but not exactly hitting the spot Nov 6 '14 at 11:44
• I have dissected the definition of 'neutral' in this question which might help. Dec 11 '14 at 2:51

## 2 Answers

Neutral detergents are not neccesarily at pH 7, and I know of no legal restriction (at least in the EU) on labelling detergents as neutral based on pH. For example, this patent claims protection for a set of neutral detergent formulae with pH of "from about 5.5 to about 8.5".

An example of a commercial product is Proctor and Gamble's "Tide", which has a pH of 8.1-8.5 according to their safety data. This is advertised as "100%" neutral !

• Thank you for your answer. Listing commerical products is not advertisement in my oppion, its just showing that there are no clear standard and companies are allowed to interpret neutral as they like. Dec 11 '14 at 6:51

I want to add some imformation to J.LS answer. According to U.S. General Services Administration, neutral detergents are produced with strong alkalis and weak acids. They are the most common soapless detergent and are usually alkylbenzenesulfonates. So, neutral detergent is not that neutral after all.