Stability of Weakly Acidic Hypochlorous Acid Solution with Microbicidal Activity

Biocontrol Sci. 2017;22(4):223-227. doi: 10.4265/bio.22.223.


Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) solution (200 ppm, pH 6) was prepared and evaluated for their stabilities and microbicidal activities. We demonstrated that HOCl is unstable against ultraviolet (UV) light, sunshine, contact with air, and elevated temperature (≧25℃). Furthermore, in the HOCl solution, the presence of excess NH2- or CHO-containing organic compounds such as proteins and carbohydrates, or of inorganic ions such as NO2-, SO3-, PO3-, Fe2+, Cu2+, and CuS, resulted in the rapid consumption of HOCl by oxidation reactions, and significantly decreased the microbicidal activity of the HOCl solution against coliform bacteria and total viable cell count. Thus, production of stable HOCl solution requires formulation in pure water harboring concentrations as low as possible of various compounds and ions, as well as storage in dark and cool conditions (<10℃) to maintain the concentration of HOCl molecules and microbicidal activity.

Keywords: Disinfectant; Hypochlorous acid; Microbicidal activity; Sodium hypochlorite; Stability.

MeSH terms

  • Anti-Infective Agents / chemistry*
  • Anti-Infective Agents / pharmacology*
  • Bacteria / drug effects
  • Chlorine / chemistry
  • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration*
  • Hypochlorous Acid / chemistry*
  • Hypochlorous Acid / pharmacology*
  • Solutions


  • Anti-Infective Agents
  • Solutions
  • Chlorine
  • Hypochlorous Acid