Uses of Chloroform

chloroform uses

Chloroform is a widely used organic compound with the chemical formula CHCl3.  It is a colourless and sweetly fragranced liquid also known as Trichloromethane.  It was used as an early anaesthetic in surgery and dentistry and for this reason those working with the material should avoid inhaling its vapours.

Nowadays Chloroform has a number of important uses such as:-

  • In chemistry it is used in organic separation
  • In plastics manufacturing it is used in the bonding process
  • It is used in organic synthesis
  • It is used as a precursor in Teflon manufacturing (non-stick)
  • In the first World War Chloroform was used as a chemical weapon
Chloroform is classified as Harmful if swallowed and as an Irritant to the skin.  Exposure through inhalation can cause serious damage to health.  Always wear protective clothing when handling Chloroform and work in a well-ventilated area or under fume extraction.   Those working with the material should familiarise themselves with the MSDS (Material Safety Data Sheets) information before commencing work.  Reputable Chloroform suppliers provide MSDS with all products.
Rich Hudson
I'm Managing Director of a leading UK chemical supplier. My company supplies most of the chemicals I blog about, you can buy them online at Chemicals.co.uk. I also keep a personal blog at RichHudson.co.uk.
Rich Hudson
Rich Hudson
Rich Hudson

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Comments

  1. What will happen if you inhale chloroform?
    What first aid is applicable?
    Is it true that you fell into sleep if inhaling such?

    Thank you.

    • The effects of inhaling chloroform will vary dependent upon the concentration. Small amounts may produce a light headed feeling, higher concentrations will lead to unconsciousness, possibly death. Yes, you can knock someone out with chloroform it was the original anaesthetic, however exposure to high amounts may be fatal. First aid measures would be to remove the casualty from the source of exposure and provide fresh air. For ingestion, seek immediate medical attention. Chloroform is a suspected carcinogen and may damage the liver and kidneys. It may be stating the obvious, but you should never, ever mess around with chloroform. Always consult the Material Safety Data Sheet of any substance before using it and take appropriate safety precautions as necessary.

  2. Sanduni Menikdiwela says:

    I learnt so much, thanku

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