Gard Chemicals undertakes around 75 per cent of its own R&D
Gard Chemicals, formed in 1977, is a family-run business which thanks to its research and development capabilities is one of the leading manufacturers in the chemical cleaning sector.
The company is proud of its dedicated research and development department, which enables it as a business to formulate and create new products that are fully dedicated to the rail industry.
Within the research and development aspect of the business, Gard Chemicals offers: technical service, on-site technical guidance, UK-based research and development, extensive material testing and on-site product evaluation,
The knowledge to create or even adapt existing products to suit the needs of an individual customer or prospect is what Gard Chemicals believes sets it aside in the rail market.
Sales director Jim Knox highlights a contract awarded by a major international manufacturer as an example of this. He explained that when the organisation was looking to enter the UK market it contacted Gard Chemicals having been impressed with work at a London depot. The requirement for a pH neutral cleaner for what was to become its flagship fleet of trains. At the time this technology had not been undertaken in the UK. “We developed a bespoke cleaner and submitted to their own laboratory for testing.” This was approved and could be used both during automatic and manual washes. Not only does this help protect the trains but cleaning equipment too as there is less corrosion, which means there is no longer a need to replace that equipment / parts every two or three years thereby providing a further cost saving.
“I attended the initial meeting as I knew this was exactly where our strengths were because, historically, we have always specialised in niche products.”
The business undertakes around 75 per cent of all its research and development in-house but does also work with various Universities in order to formulate products with the latest technology. This research helps the business to understand the products and the market, and also to take steps forward in important issues such as the environment.
Internal and external meetings with raw material suppliers are crucial to ensuring Gard Chemicals only formulates and manufactures using sustainable raw materials taking into account all through the process the environment and current legislation.
Ever changing regulations throughout the rail industry means it remains imperative for Gard Chemicals to keep fully up to date in order to support our customer base.
Gard Chemicals uses the latest chemical technology to develop bespoke products to meet the exact requirements or to produce products to solve a problem, considering environmental regulatory issues.
Products used are subjected to more and more control as time passes. As well as the control of the chemicals, packaging is also increasingly becoming subject to environmental legislation. The correct product labelling and compilation of Material Safety Data Sheets are an essential part of the service offered by Gard Chemicals as well as giving advice on other compliance issues.