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zinc naphthenate is a highly miscible, water-soluble liquid that exhibits good corrosion inhibition and other preservative properties. It is effective as a replacement for chromated copper arsenate (CCA) in the pressure treatment of wood products and is an excellent fungicide. It reduces the incidence of fungus, mildew and insect damage to wood products, and is also an effective anti-corrosion additive to metalworking fluids. It is an excellent boundary lubricant in metalworking oils and greases, and has good acid neutralization and dispersant properties. It can also be used as a rust preventive in paints, coatings, and other materials.

In the synthesis of unsaturated polyester resins, it is used to control the exotherm of promoted resins and to enhance their end use properties. Concentrations as low as 8% have been found to improve the hardness and gloss of cured films. It is also effective as a drier in coatings and printing inks, and as a wetting agent to control cracking on the surface of films. It is an insecticide and fungicide, and is effective against moss, algae, and mildews in wood products.

The vapor of zinc naphthenate is irritating to the nose, throat, eyes and respiratory tract, and may cause skin irritation. The solid forms are corrosive to the skin and may be toxic by ingestion. It is a strong irritant and should be handled only by well-protected personnel. It is also a powerful oxidizing agent and should be kept away from combustibles. For additional safety precautions, see the material safety data sheet.

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