Graphic Arts - Pressroom Chemicals

We offer a safer product profile for

Pressroom Chemicals

The graphic arts industry was one of the first markets to adapt ESTISOL® and ESTISURF® products in safer formulations for application in the print shop.

Great technical performance, a safer product profile, and attractive environmental properties were important factors for the success of the ESTI CHEM products in this industry.

ESTI CHEM offers ESTISOL® ester solvents, ESTISURF® surfactants & corrosion inhibitors, and DEFOAMER silicone oil-free defoamers applied as formulation components in cleaners and auxiliary products applied in the lithographic, UV, flexographic and screen-printing industries.

ESTI CHEM has extensive knowledge about the formulation of ink cleaners – please contact us to discuss your specific projects. 

ESTI CHEM is a member of FOGRA  

The lithographic (offset) pressroom products have always been an important application area for ESTI CHEM products.

ESTISOL® fatty acid esters have proven to be valuable solvents in blanket and roller washes, contributing to improved cleaning efficiency and reduced environmental impact.

ESTISOL® fatty acid esters are derived from natural fatty acids and alcohols. They are organic compounds with a unique structure that imparts both lipophilic and hydrophilic properties.

The length of the carbon chain in the fatty acid and the alcohol moiety influences the overall solvency and volatility of the ester.

ESTISOL® fatty acid esters exhibit excellent solvency for various lithographic inks without negative impact on the rubber rollers.

ESTI CHEM has extensive information about the compatibility between ESTISOL® esters and rubber materials.

Safer formulations for pressroom chemicals

Compared to traditional petroleum-based solvents, ESTISOL® fatty acid esters generally have lower volatility.

This characteristic reduces the emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere. ESTISOL® fatty acid esters are free from CLP labelling. ESTISOL® esters may be used as base fluids in vegetable-based cleaners, but they may also be used as solvency boosters for high-boiling hydrocarbon solvents, which are normally weak solvents with insufficient cleaning properties.

Typical ESTISOL® products for application lithographic ink cleaner formulations are:


For very high-boiling cleaners applied in heat-set printing, ESTISOL 295, ESTISOL 297, and ESTISOL 390 may be applied.

ESTISURF surfactants for removal of ink and contaminants

ESTISURF® surfactants play a crucial role as emulsifiers in blanket and roller washes. These surface-active agents facilitate the effective removal of ink & contaminants by creating emulsions that enhance cleaning efficiency and prevent re-deposition of dissolved substances.

ESTI CHEM offers single-component emulsifiers and optimized surfactant packages with corrosion inhibitors for application in blanket & rollers washes:


For DEFOAMER applied in fountain solutions see: 

The flexo printing ink cleaners is another important application area for ESTI CHEM formulation raw materials. The chemistries are very different depending on the printing technique, which can be solvent-based, UV, or water-based.

Solvent-based flexo and UV ink cleaners » highly polar solvents are normally required to obtain sufficient cleaning speed & quality. ESTISOL 150 and ESTISOL 165 are typical base solvents for application in solvent-based and UV ink cleaners, whereas ESTISOL 130 and ESTIS0L 135 may be applied as co-solvents or boosters for difficult cleaning tasks.

ESTISURF® emulsifiers and wetting agents are also often used in the cleaning agent formulations. They improve surface wetting and penetration, they facility the removal of ink residues by water-washing, and they prevent re-deposit of ink & sludge.  ESTISURF 970, ESTISURF M27, ESTISURF C040 have found many applications in such cleaners.      

Water-based flexo ink cleaners: such cleaning fluids are essentially low-foaming alkaline cleaners. ESTISURF® surfactants provides surface wetting properties, cleaning, emulsification, and prevents re-deposits.

ESTI CHEM supplies several high-performance surfactants widely used in cleaning agents for water-based flexo inks: ESTISURF 264, ESTISURF 9114, ESTISURF 100-40, ESTISURF M10, ESTISURF LF 139, and ESTISURF LF 263. 

Solvents for application in UV ink cleaners

ESTI CHEM DEFOAMER products may also be applied in cleaners for water-based flexo inks, either as a part of the cleaner concentrate or as tank-side additive.


ESTI CHEM products also find their way into cleaners for the screen-printing industry. Highly polar ESTISOL® such as ESTISOL 150 and ESTISOL 165 are applied as base solvents, whereas ESTISOL 130 and ESTIS0L 135 may be applied as co-solvents or boosters for difficult cleaning tasks.

ESTISURF 1303, ESTISURF 1305, ESTISURF 9114, and ESTISURF LF 139 provide cleaning & emulsification by water-washing.

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