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Cleaning up spilled bottle of water glass

Q. A bottle of water glass broke and stuck to a concrete floor. It's now as hard as a rock. What can I use to get this mess up short of chopping it up as I would Ice? What is water glass good for besides preserving eggs? Marilyn L. Dixon Minneapolis

A. We fired this question off to chemical expert kenneth E. Boyer of ProSoCo, Inc., 1040 Parallel Parkway, Kansas City, Kan. 66104. The company markets cleaning solvents and stain removers.

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Mr. Boyer advises: "Apply a highly alkaline cleaner. Let it soak on and around the surface of the water glass. Try scraping it if it is softened. If this does not soften it, simply remove the water glass by chipping and scraping."

Water glass is a water-soluble substance consisting of sodium silicate which is found in commerce in a glassy mass, stony powder, or syrupy liquid dissolved in water. It is used chiefly as a cement and adhesive, a builder for soaps and synthetic detergents, a protective coating and fireproofing agent in papermaking , and in making artificial stone as well as preserving eggs.

Infrequently it is found as a solidified mess on the concrete floor of the Dixon house there in Minneapolis.

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