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What Is Isopropyl Alcohol Used For?

Isopropyl alcohol (IPA) is a colorless compound who has a chemical formula of C3H8O. This comes under the category of a secondary alcohol and it can be recognized by its strong odor. This chemical is volatile, highly flammable, and can be used for multiple purposes in different industries. The main reason it is used is because of its antibacterial properties. In fact, it is so famous for this property that you will find it in almost every house. But this is not the only use of IPA. There is so much more under the belt and today we are going to explain it to you that.

Antiseptic

There are many high proof ethanol products that are extremely antimicrobial against bacteria and Isopropyl alcohol is one of them. That makes IPA a very famous antiseptic. That liquid doctors swab your skin with, yes that is nothing but IPA. In fact, not just doctors, piercers use to prepare your skin for a piercing and it is also a major component in many sanitizers. Because of its antibacterial properties, it kills and protects us against surface bacteria that’s why it plays an important role in sanitizer. You will find it in first aid kits of so many homes as it is used to rub on minor cuts to prevent bacterial infection.  But why is IPA so effective as an antibacterial?

For IPA to be effective it should be at a high alcohol concentration which is usually between 70% and 99%. This tags it as a high proof and this is not safe to consume. When we use it as an antiseptic, it gets penetrated in the cell wall and permeates the entire cell causing all proteins to coagulate. This kills the bacteria.

IPA gets evaporated easily and quickly and that can support the regrowth of pathogenic microorganisms. That’s why water is mixed in isopropyl alcohol as it slows down the process of evaporation inhibiting the regrowth of bacteria. This increases the time of surface contact which boosts the effectiveness of this chemical.

If the alcohol concentrates in IPA are below 50% then it wouldn’t be effective as compared to the high alcohol concentration. This means if you are thinking to use your 4.5% beer to clean your wounds then you are just wasting your time. Go for IPA with 90% alcohol concentrates as this will be very effective.

Cleaning Agent

Surface Disinfectant

There are two good properties of IPA that make it perfect for this role and those are antibacterial and capacity to act as a solvent. This is a great surface disinfectant that’s why it is an active ingredient in many products that are used to clean and disinfectant the surface. It is mainly used in hospitals to prevent the spread of infection or diseases through any surface. This is so effective in its role that it is on the Environmental Protection Agency’s “List of Antimicrobial Products Effective Against Mycobacterium Tuberculosis, Human HIV-1 and Hepatitis B Virus.”

It is obvious that if it is being used in hospitals for good hygiene then you should use it at your place too. You can clean your cupboards, kitchen shelves and so many other surfaces that come in human contact. Make sure to clean your glass surfaces such as windows and mirrors. Since it is highly volatile, it gets evaporated quickly without leaving behind as streak or residue. Not just bacteria free but your windows and mirror will be super clean and shiny.

Household Solvent

If you find a solution to clean your house and prevent it from bacterial infection then IPA would be a good deal for you. It can be used to clean and disinfect all surfaces, from countertop to toilet bowl. Due to its antiseptic properties, it is very effective in killing all the bacteria from the surface and since it acts as a solvent, it dissolves sticky residues, grease, oils, etc. It can even be used to erase the permanent marker from the surface of a whiteboard making it in a liquid form that comes out easily and then you can slowly wipe it away.

Electronic Components

It is very effective and useful to clean the electronic components. It is one of the best things to use for cleaning electronic equipment. As we have already told you that it doesn’t leave any streaks behind, it can be used to clean perfectly. Mainly, it is used to clean magnetic tape, optical disc drive lasers, and IC packages. You can also clean CDs and DVDs. Fingerprints of CD and DVD are really hard to get rid of but not with IPA.

This is also available in an aerosol form which is perfect for electronic parts having complex geometries or those that are difficult to access making your job easy. Before a doctor/surgeon touches someone, he/she makes sure that their hands are scrubbed by sanitizers containing  IPA. This is because for a doctor it is important to clean hands and get rid of bacteria.

It can be used to clean other things that come in contact with us like a bong. It is very important to clean your bongs before using them and as we told you that it is perfect to use IPA for glass cleaning purposes, bong can be cleaned by this too. If you don’t have IPA then you must be thinking how to clean bong without isopropyl? There are other isopropyl alcohol alternatives too and if you don’t find IPA then you can use bong isopropyl alternative. Even if you are buying a high-quality Rick and Morty dab rig, you have to clean it to prevent any types of bacterial infection.

Astringent

If you don’t know what an Astringent is then it is a substance that helps in tightening of body tissue like pores and contracts them. People use astringents on the face to close their open pores and Isopropyl alcohol behaves as an astringent. In fact, it is a common ingredient in many skin toners and tightening formulas because of this property.