Is Cidex Flammable?

This article will answer the following question: “Is Cidex flammable?”, and other important safety questions when dealing the disinfectant. Cidex is a trade name for products that have three different active ingredients.

Is Cidex Flammable?

It depends but usually, it is flammable. There are three major different products under the name of Cidrex, each can have different formulations that can make the whole product more or less flammable.

What is Cidex?

Cidex is part of the trade name for different kinds of solutions. All of them are usually used for antimicrobial or disinfection intents, normally for medicinal purposes.

To understand what a product is, how it works, behaves, and how flammable the compound is we must understand its ingredients.

Cidex’s properties depend on the active ingredient each formulation has. These ingredients can be phthalaldehyde, peracetic acid, and glutaraldehyde.

Cidex OPA

Cidex OPA is perhaps the most common Cidex product. 

According to the fabricant, is considered a “high-level disinfectant for reprocessing reusable heat-sensitive semi-critical medical devices such as endoscopic, respiratory therapy, and anesthesia equipment”.

Cidex OPA products use phthalaldehyde as its active ingredient, which is also known as o-phthalaldehyde or OPA itself.

The active ingredient degrades upon UV light and air exposure.

Phthalaldehyde dissolves in water at a pH of less than 11.5, so you can expect that a disinfectant would have a pH range about the same.


In this product, the active ingredient is peracetic acid, also known as peroxyacetic acid and PAA). Its odor reminds acetic acid. 

It is used as a bleaching agent in paper and textiles industries

Peracetyl borate produces peracetic acid after being mixed with water.

Cidex Plus

Also known as Glutaral, it is also a disinfectant but also works as medication, and in the preservation of biological tissues.

Its active compound is named Glutaraldehyde.

Cidex products hazards and flammability

In this section, we will resume all available safety data information regarding each of the three types of Cidex products. We will provide their hazard pictograms, focusing on the fire hazards.

All the information below is valid for the active ingredients. The final product can have different characteristics, but the will be more or less similar.

Cidex OPA 

Cidex OPA’s active compound is considered dangerous due to its flammability, toxicity, corrosiveness, and propensity to cause serious eye damage.

Hazards identification for phthalaldehyde.


  • It’s a flammable solid (Flashpoint: 132 °C (270 °F) ;
  • Present high toxicity if swallowed;
  • Causes severe skin burns and eye damage;
  • Can be irritating to the skin;
  • May cause sensitization of the skin;
  • Can cause respiratory irritation;
  • Can damage organs due to prolonged exposure;
  • It’s very toxic for aquatic life (acute and long-term hazards).

Cidex OPA Flammability

Cidex OPA is considered a flammable substance, but its main hazards are due to toxic and irritant effects.

The substance has a considerably low flashpoint for a solid (at room temperature). This means that flammable organic vapors can rise from it and create a flammable mist on top of the solid.

The product also has a low melting point, it melts around 56ºC/ 132ºF. When liquid, more volatile organic compounds can rise.

If the room is not well-ventilated, the compound is exposed to the air, and there’s heat and a source of ignition close by, the substance can catch fire under milder conditions.


Heating this substance may lead to a fire. It would also liberate self-active substances and mixtures, and peroxides. The product can cause severe skin burns and eye damage.

Hazards identification for peracetic acid.


General hazards for the substance:

  • It’s a flammable liquid that can easily generate vapors;
  • Heating the product may lead to ignition;
  • It can be harmful if swallowed;
  • Present acute toxicity to the skin;
  • Causes severe skin burns and eye damage;
  • Presents acute toxicity if inhaled;
  • Is very toxic to aquatic life.

Nu-Cidex Flammability

Corrosiveness and flammability are the most important hazards of this substance.

Peracetic acid is considered a very flammable substance. It is a liquid that has a very low flashpoint (40ºC/ 105ºF), for a solution that has about 35% PAA. 

The less concentration of peracetic acid a mixture has, the higher is its flashpoint (it then takes longer to evaporate).  

Nu-Cidex is clearly flammable. Caution when handling and storing the compound is indispensable for any peracetic acid solution.

Cidex Plus

The most important hazards of Glutaraldehyde are the toxicity due to swallowing, the severe skin burn and eye damage, the allergy and asthma symptoms it presents and the fact that it can be fatal if inhaled.

Hazards identification for Glutaraldehyde.


Resume of the substance’s hazards:

  • Glutaraldehyde can be fatal if inhaled;
  • It presents acute toxicity if swallowed;
  • Can cause sensitization of the skin;
  • Can cause respiratory tract irritation and organ toxicity after a single exposure;
  • It presents acute and long-term toxicity to aquatic life.

Cidex plus flammability

Unlike the other Cidex compounds, Cidex plus is considered non-flammable.

It can still give off irritating or toxic fumes if in a fire, but the compound itself is not combustible/ can’t be ignited and generate more heat because of that.


Cidex OPA is a flammable solution that should be handled with proper ventilation to avoid fire hazards. Nu-Cidex is even more flammable than OPA. Cidex Plus is non-flammable but is deadly if inhaled. Each of these products has different active ingredients.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQS): Is Cidex Flammable

is cidex a high level disinfectant?

Yes, it is. According to the U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), these are examples of high-level disinfectants: Glutaraldehyde, Ortho-Phthaldehyde, Peracetic acid, Hydrogen peroxide, Hypochlorous acid Hypochlorite.

The first three of this list are active ingredients commonly found in Cidex formulas.

is cidex opa a glutaraldehyde?

No, it’s no. Cidex OPA’s active ingredient is phthalaldehyde (o-phthalaldehyde or OPA). Cidex plus, although, has glutaraldehyde.

is cidex a chemical sterilant?

Cidex OPA is not considered sterilant according to the manufacturer, but a high-level disinfectant. We couldn’t find information rather another Cidex product is considered sterilant or not. It’s safer to assume it’s only disinfectant.


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