Apex™ Paint Detackification in Paint Booth

APEX™ Paint Detackification Technology

In automotive assembly, there are different types of paint booth overspray capture technologies. Wet spray booths or scrubbers, where overspray is drawn into a circulating water stream below the paint booth are the most common paint spray booths today. This water stream exits the booth and goes to a pit with a consolidation device to remove the paint solids from the water. This clean water is then returned to the booth to avoid excessive freshwater consumption.  It’s critical to remove the paint solids effectively to avoid buildup in the booth that can negatively affect the airflow in the paint booth itself, causing potential quality issues in the paint job and higher energy use to maintain proper airflow from the fans. 

A good chemical paint detackification program is critical for effective and efficient separation of the paint solids from the water. The paint detack program first detackifies the paint so it’s no longer sticky, then helps the solids efficiently bind together for efficient removal and effective dewatering.   

The Nalco Water APEX™ Paint Detackification technology has been successfully implemented in paint booth systems using all kinds of paint types (polyurethanes, 2K clear coats, high solids primers, high solids solvent-borne basecoats, and high solids water-borne basecoats). APEX™ technology delivers complete paint detackification with improved overall system collection efficiency and cleanliness.

Superior Paint Detackification Chemistry

Water APEX™ technology includes the first, truly effective, 99% biodegradable paint detackifier chemistry. As a result, the APEX™ technology was a 2012 Automotive News PACE (Premier Automotive Suppliers' Contribution to Excellence) Award winner, which recognizes superior innovation, technological advancement and business performance among automotive suppliers.

Detackification Chemistry Focused on Safety and Sustainability

  • Over 99% sustainable and renewable raw materials  
  • Zero VOC
  • Zero Formaldehyde
  • Not classified as dangerous in accordance with Directives 67/548/EEC or 1999/45/EC
  • Product is not regulated during transportation

Flocculant - Ultimer Polymer Technology

  • Winner of US Presidential Green Chemistry Award
  • No oil content
  • Easily applied

Antifoams - Improved High Performance Materials

  • High active content
  • Requires low dosage
  • Environmentally-friendly
  • Advanced formulations
  • Zero VOC


Paint Booth Performance and Results

Developed by the water treatment and automotive experts at Nalco Water, APEX™ technology can rapidly lower system turbidity and total suspended solids. Challenging foaming issues, which frequently occur in these systems, are quickly minimized or eliminated.

After introducing APEX™ technology, customers are typically able to achieve an average reduction of 20% in the Total Cost of Operation in their paint booth systems. The evaluations of the impact of APEX™ technology upon customer Sustainability Performance Indicators (SPIs) in paint booth operation have shown the following average improvements:


  • Reduction in water volume and cost of more than 20%
  • Improved microbiological control


  • Reduction in energy consumption and cost of more than 10%
  • Reduction in waste volumes, disposal and incineration costs of more than 30%


  • VOC-free paint detackification program available
  • Reduction in odor and related number of complaints
  • Reduce emissions
  • Enhanced process efficiency, product quality, or site productivity
  • Reduction in maintenance and specific cleaning activities and costs of more than 50%
  • Improved air filter life


  • Reduced emissions
  • Conservation of natural resources
  • Reduction in waste volumes, disposal and incineration costs of more than 30% 
  • Achievement of your sustainable goals
  • Technical expertise
image, Transportation, auto, automotive, paint booth, B-1590

Paint Detackification Success Story

During the last decade, the Automotive Industry has increasingly demonstrated a strong commitment to Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). Many automotive programs and procedures have been put in place to help meet sustainability targets to reduce the consumption of natural resources, and associated emissions and waste. Today the industry must work even harder to meet sustainability targets and financial goals. Cost control and reduction of the total cost of operation remain key factors in managing and operating profitability.

Many automotive plants worldwide have strict environmental management practices in place which aim to:

  • Reduce emissions to air, in particular CO2 and other greenhouse gases, and Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC)
  • Reduce energy consumption using innovative technologies
  • Reduce freshwater use
  • Minimize waste production and improve water treatment

Learn more about how Nalco Water is innovating for a better paint shop.

More APEX™ Paint Detackification Case Studies

robot paint sprayer painting car roof

Delivering Major Cost reduction

Learn about how Nalco Water helped a Global Automotive Manufacturer in Thailand improve performance in their paint shop and deliver major cost reductions.


Improving Sustainability Performance and Delivering Cost Savings

Learn about a leading European automobile manufacturer that operates production facilities around the world, and is one of the leading producers in Europe.

image, Transportation, auto, automotive, paint booth, B-1590

Improving Performance and Delivering Major Cost Reduction

Learn about this major auto assembly plant, one of two green flag designated customer sites in Europe and MEA.

apexpaintdetackification 550x310.jpg

Reducing Solid Waste

Learn about how Nalco Water helped an automotive assembly facility reduce their solid waste by 267,000 pounds.