HexChecks™ Hexavalent Chromium Test Swabs 

  1. The color changed after an extended period. Does this mean the test is positive?
    • HexChecks swabs will turn pink/purple quickly after exposure to hexavalent chromium. Full color will develop in 3-5 minutes.
    • Swab color changes should only be considered valid if they turn color within a 15-minute window after the start of the test
    • A used swab may naturally turn pink well after use, typically after an hour, and the wick is dry. This does not indicate the presence of Cr(VI).
  2. How to get the best results with swabs?
    1. Hold vertically with fibers facing up.
    2. Crush both ampules so contents fall to the bottom to mix completely.
    3. Shake gently for 10 seconds.
    4. Invert so fibers point down, and squeeze gently to saturate the tip.
  3. Will swabs stain?
    • No, swabs will not stain.
  4. Will swabs damage sensitive surfaces?
    • Swabs are safe for most surfaces but contain acetone.
    • Always test swabs on an inconspicuous surface.
  5. How do I test a sensitive surface?
    • Use a dry rag or paper towel to wipe the contamination off the sensitive surface, thus collecting it on the rag.
    • Use the swab with a dabbing motion to test the rag or paper towel.
  6. How can I test a rough or porous surface?
    • Use a dabbing motion.
  7. Do swabs react to trivalent chromium?
    • No.
  8. Do swabs react to anything other than hexavalent chromium?
    • No.
  9. Is it possible to get a false positive?
    • HexChecks Testing Swabs are very selective and sensitive to hexavalent chromium.
  10. Can I re-use swabs?
    • It is recommended that a swab is only used once.
  11. I left a pack of swabs in my hot truck. Will they still work?
    • Avoid long or repeated exposures, but swabs will work at elevated temperatures. Please see the HexChecks Testing Swab Temperature Range report on the Resource page.
  12. I work in the field where it drops below freezing; will the swab still work?
    • Swabs work down to –5*C, however the color will develop slower. Please see the HexChecks Testing Swab Temperature Range report on the Resource page.
  13. Can I use swabs on a hot exhaust?
    • No, let it cool to around 140*F (60*C).  Much above that the liquid flash evaporates before the reaction is complete.  Please see the HexChecks Testing Swab Temperature Range report on the Resource page.
  14. Are swabs skin-safe?
    • Yes, but avoid broken skin.
  15. Do swabs expire?
    • No. In reasonable storage conditions, they will last many years.
  16. How do I dispose of swabs after use?
    • A contaminated swab can be wetted with HexChecks Neutralizer and disposed of as general refuse (in accordance with your local, state, and federal laws).
  17. I tested an area and detected no hex chrome. After sitting for an hour, I saw some pink. Do I have hexavalent chromium?
    • No. Upon drying, the active ingredients can oxidize and show pink. Avoid using a swab outside of the 15min working window or if the wick is dried out.


HexChecks Neutralizer:

  1. How much HexChecks Neutralizer do I need to use?
    • Neutralization is a chemical reaction. Just like heavy grease requires more degreaser, more hex chrome will require more neutralizer.
    • Use a testing swab to verify full neutralization.
  2. How long does HexChecks Neutralizer take to work?
    • HexChecks Neutralizerworks within seconds when fully wetted.
    • Wiping with a rag or brush improves wetting.
  3. Is HexChecks Neutralizer bad for my skin?
    • No
  4. Is HexChecks Neutralizer mist bad to breathe?
    • No
  5. Does HexChecks Neutralizer harm surfaces?
    • HexChecks Neutralizer is gentle but mildly acidic. If HexChecks Neutralizer is used for processing raw steel, you may want to take additional steps like a freshwater rinse followed by a flash rust inhibitor.
    • HexChecks Neutralizer is non-staining.
    • HexChecks Neutralizer is non-abrasive.
  6. Once mixed, do I have to use HexChecks Neutralizer within 30 days?
    • Testing has shown that HexChecks Neutralizer performance begins degrading after 30 days, which means beyond that time you’ll have to use more to achieve the same result. It is best to mix only what is needed for HexChecks Neutralizer for a month.
  7. Can I use HC HexChecks Neutralizer N in a floor scrubber or “floor Zamboni”?
    • Absolutely, it works great.
  8. Is HexChecks Neutralizer safe to go down a drain?
    • Yes.
  9. Do I have to use distilled water?
    • No, tap water works great.
  10. Does HexChecks Neutralizer powder go bad?
    • Take reasonable care to store sealed containers in a cool, dry place, and it will last many years.
  11. Once neutralized, does hex chrome come back?
    • Naturally, no.
  12. How do I apply HexChecks Neutralizer?
    • To work as designed, apply HexChecks Neutralizer to the contaminated surface until wet. You can apply it with a wet rag, a hand sprayer, a garden sprayer, a mop, a floor scrubber, etc.
    • Use a HexChecks Testing Swab to verify complete neutralization, especially until you get a feel for how the product works for your application.
  13. Does HexChecks Neutralizer leave a residue?
    • The residue is minimal. If it leaves streaks on glass or you are concerned it will affect another process, HexChecks Neutralizer rinses away with water.
  14. Can I use HexChecks Neutralizer to decontaminate PPE?
    • Yes, but be thorough and definitely follow up with a HexChecks Test Swab.
  15. Doesn’t HC HexChecks Neutralizer perform the same way as other hex chrome cleaners, such as Hygenall’s HexOff?
    • No, HexOff removes hex chrome by collecting it on a rag. The hex chrome still exists on the rag.
  16. HexChecks Neutralizer converts the carcinogenic hexavalent chromium to non-hazardous trivalent chromium.

Website orders and other questions:

  1. Does HexChecks or Figure Engineering sell my personal info?
    • Absolutely not.
  2. What types of payments do you accept?
    • We accept Credit Card/Debit Card, PayPal, Venmo, or Pay Later. If you require a PO, we can process orders manually by calling our office.
  3. How is Figure Engineering related to HexChecks?
    • HexChecks is a brand and registered trademark of Figure Engineering.
  4. Do you sell HexChecks Neutralizer in bulk pails?
    • Yes, contact us to arrange for larger quantities.
  5. When will my order ship?
    • Orders are typically processed and shipped between 1-3 business days.
  6. What are your business hours?
    • Our hours are from 8:00 am to 4:30 pm (Eastern Time Zone).
  7. What is the best way to reach you if I have a question that is not answered here?
    • You can reach us via email at: info@HexChecks.com; or you can also reach us via phone at: (866) 500-8484