When we're talking about concentrated alcohol products, it doesn't get better than 200 proof alcohol. Also known as 100% alcohol, pure ethanol, or 99.9% isopropyl alcohol, this substance has a wide application. You can use it as a solvent, cleaning product, disinfectant, and for industrial purposes.
This chemical substance can be used to create various products. You can buy it from reputable chemical stores such as the Simple Solvents shop. Keep in mind, though, that the chemical will evaporate rather quickly as it doesn't have a lot of water.
When it does, pure alcohol will not leave any residue on the surface. USP grade product has fewer impurities and higher testing standards than FCC grade alcohol.
So, how can you use 200 proof alcohol? What are the common precautionary measures when using high purity alcohols?
Botanical Extraction like Hemp and Cannabis
High-purity alcohols are great for botanical extraction. Pure ethanol & CDA 12A are widespread methods of extraction in the hemp and cannabis industries. Ethanol extraction is also used for other plants like citrus for pectin.
CDA 12A is 200 proof ethanol with an added 5 gallons of high purity n heptane per 100 gallons of pure ethanol. This is common because no additional taxes are associated with completely denatured ethanol. However, pure ethanol has a significant tax associated with it of $13.50 per 100-proof gallon.
Does 200 Proof Alcohol Kill Germs?
As you well know, items with alcohol are the most common cleaning chemicals. Alcohol substantially impacts the microorganisms' cells, penetrating them and destroying bacteria, fungi, and viruses from the inside. However, for this to happen, a substance must stay on the surface long enough to make an impact.
When you use alcohols for microbes, they must have enough water content. Therefore, there should be a nice balance between the two substances. As water and alcohol mix together, the water part will help alcohol stick to the surface for a more extended period.
Because of its low water content, 200 proof alcohol will not be able to kill microbes. So instead, it is much better to use 70 to 90% alcohol. Based on what we know, 70% alcohol provides the optimal results for disinfecting.
However, that doesn't mean that 200 proof alcohol is not a suitable cleaning substance. On the contrary, it is used for certain sensitive products such as electronics.
These devices cannot stand excessive water content as it can damage them. This makes 200 proof alcohol an ideal product for this particular purpose.
How Can You Use 200 Proof Alcohol?
Besides the fact that 100% alcohol can be used for cleaning electronics, it has various other potential uses. For example, it can also be good for cleaning glass, stainless items, sticky areas, gardening, distillation, and extraction.
Here are some of the main ways you can benefit from the chemical:
You can use 100% isopropyl alcohol (when not diluted) to clean various surfaces. Most commonly, it is utilized for homes. You can use it for bathrooms, kitchens, and other areas constantly getting dirty.
It is perfect for its ability to remove sticky residue. The product can be used for computer screens and mobile devices at home or at work. Low water content ensures they are not damaged in the process.
The substance is incredible for sensitive surfaces that don't have to be disinfected. A good example is windows, mirrors, and other types of glass.
You can use it for metal surfaces. Again, low water content ensures that rust will not affect the metal. If you're working with ink and markers, 200 proof alcohol will be your best friend.
Often, the substance is used for wood furniture and floors. However, you should dilute it a bit as highly-concentrated alcohol can be too rough on wooden elements.
Hemp & Cannabis Extraction
Pure ethanol and CDA 12A are commonly used for hemp and cannabis extraction.
This alcohol substance is viral within the beauty industry. It is used for cleaning brushes. However, it is even better for cleaning nails and removing polish.
By using this alcohol, you can achieve maximum nail shine. Often, the substance is used during the last steps of a gel manicure. As mentioned, it is excellent for removing sticky substances.
The 200 proof alcohol is a widespread chemical within industrial facilities. Companies use it for the extraction of various oils.
As of late, it has become trendy within the hemp industry. However, you can use it for other types of processing as well.
Oftentimes, the substance is used for wipes. You can easily clean sensitive surfaces and devices when you put them on a wipe.
Hobbyists simply love this product. It can be used for removing paint from various surfaces. Artists use it for watercolors and color dye. You can also use it for 3D printers' residue. Lastly, it is a great help when you wish to remove frost from your car windshields.
Lastly, we need to mention how the product can be used for gardening. First off, it can be a great help for dealing with bugs.
Due to its potency and pungent odor, it will deter flies from attacking your vegetables and fruits. You can also use 200 proof alcohol to clean flowers and silk plants.
What are the differences between alcohol products?
First off, alcohol can be categorized as pure and denatured. As the name implies, pure products only have alcohol and water.
They don't have any other ingredients to them. On the other hand, companies put certain chemicals into alcohol when they want to create a denatured product.
Denatured ethanol is regulated differently than pure ethanol. Simple Solvents focuses on denaturing with n Heptane but have the capacity to use hexane, isopropyl, or denatonium benzoate (used in SDA 40B and often used in sanitizer) depending on the application of the product.
Denatured products cannot be consumed. In fact, they are made in such a way to dissuade humans from drinking the liquid or using it in products meant for human consumption.
They might have a nasty smell, taste, or a different color. They often cause vomiting.
Depending on the concentration, alcohol can be used for various things. Needless to say, pure ethanol is one of the most popular, most versatile products within the Simple Solvents store.
This chemical is often used as a basis for denatured products but has various applications.
What are the potential risks when using 200 proof alcohol?
Regardless of its benefits, this is a very volatile substance, and you need to be very careful when using it. In addition, the 200 proof alcohol is very flammable.
This pertains both to its liquid and vapor. Because of that, you must keep it as far as possible from open flames, heat, and sparks.
If you get it into your eyes, it will definitely cause severe irritation. The container needs to be closed at all times unless you wish to use it.
Make sure to wear protective equipment for your eyes, skin, and other parts of the body. After handling the substance, you will need to clean your hands thoroughly.
All chemicals should be stored in a safe, cool area out of direct sunlight. In addition, be sure to comply with all local, state, and federal regulations for hazmat materials and alcohol.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is 200 Proof Ethanol the Same as 100% Ethanol?
No. Even if this answer defies the logic.
Sound complicated? Here's the explanation. Companies remove as much water (but not all) as possible, making this 200-proof ethanol the purest liquid you can buy. Therefore, most ethanol products in the market contain less than 100% alcohol.
What Percentage is 200 Proof Ethanol?
200 proof ethanol has about 99.5% ethyl alcohol. But you might wonder, why doesn't the solvent contain 100% alcohol concentration. The main reason for this finding is that it's impossible to get absolute ethanol using the distillation technique.
Some people try to separate the remaining water through chemicals such as benzene or calcium oxide. Then producers filter the residues.
But as you can see, this method is tedious and costly. Also, the compounds people use during production are carcinogenic.
Is 200 Proof Ethanol Possible?
No. You'll find several companies selling 200-proof alcohol. But these products contain a range of 95-99.5% alcohol.
This phenomenon occurs because alcohol and water form an azeotrope mixture during the distillation process. Hence, that reaction restricts fluid removal to get to 100% alcohol.
Absolute alcohol is also highly hygroscopic, which makes its acquisition challenging. That characteristic means that 200-proof ethanol absorbs water from the atmosphere and dilutes. So, store your product in a tightly closed container and use a drying agent.
Is There Such Thing as 200 Proof Moonshine?
No. Moonshine commonly has 100-150 proof (50-75%) ethanol. Also, 75% alcohol is already a concentration that most veteran users can't handle.
Can you imagine what 200-proof or 100% alcohol will do to you? You would probably wake up in a hospital!
Is Everclear the Same as Ethanol?
Yes, Everclear is pure ethanol that most states allow for use as a beverage. And like grain alcohol, producers get this solvent by fermenting barley, corn, or cane using yeast cells. Then, you can distill this ethanol further to make alcoholic beverages.
For example, you'll get Everclear from your liquor store in 2 concentrations. These strengths are 75.5% and 95% alcohol. You can, therefore, dilute the liquid and drink it because regulatory boards approve it as food-grade, which is safe for consumption.
Can You Drink 100% Ethanol?
No. The consumption of this product will lead to liver failure, coma, or death. Also, you might be exposing yourself to cancer, which you don't want. Instead, opt for beverages with an alcohol concentration of between 5-50%.
Can You Buy 100% Ethanol?
Yes, some chemical suppliers will sell you 100% alcohol. But this solvent mainly contains additives and is hence unsafe for human consumption. On the bright side, this ethanol is cheap, and you'll purchase it without the tedious permit requirements by regulatory boards.
Is 200 Proof Ethanol Denatured?
Some companies denature their 200-proof alcohol with methanol, acetone, or isopropyl alcohol. This measure ensures that the state doesn't impose heavy taxes on this product. And thus, various industries can save on production costs.
For example, clinical histology labs use this liquid in their biology procedures.
Still, you can get this solvent in its pure form. So, buy your ethanol depending on the intended use. To illustrate, use pure ethanol for ingestible goods and adultered alcohol for cleaning, fuel, cosmetics, etc.
What's the Difference Between Ethyl Alcohol and Denatured Alcohol?
Ethyl alcohol is also grain or pure ethanol. This product contains water as a filler, and you'll thus find it in different concentrations.
Alcohol distilleries can use this solvent as a base to make wine, whiskey, or vodka. Or cannabis companies can use it as an extraction solvent.
Denatured alcohol processors make their products by adding water and toxic, foul-smelling substances. These compounds include gasoline, methanol, or isopropanol, which you can mix individually or as a combination. Thus, you'll get different solvents with versatile applications.
For example, manufacturers can label specially denatured alcohol as SDA 35A, 40B, or 29, depending on the additive.
Why is Denatured Alcohol Used in Industry Instead of Regular Ethanol?
Denatured alcohol is a cost-effective solvent suitable for household and industrial applications. You might think this ethanol is less effective because it has denaturants. But that notion is false.
You'll still get optimal hygiene standards, good fuel, and high-quality cosmetics. But the only problem is that you can't drink denatured alcohol. So, you won't find this product valuable if you process ingestible goods.
What Are the Different Grades of Ethanol?
There are three primary alcohol grades. This classification depends on the purity of the product you're buying. The alcohol types include 95.6 or 190 proof ethanol, 99-100% or 200 proof absolute ethanol, and denatured alcohol.
Is Isopropyl Alcohol the Same as Ethanol?
No, isopropyl alcohol differs from ethanol in how you source it and its chemical structure.
To illustrate, you'll get IPA by mixing propylene with sulfuric acid and then performing hydrolysis. The end product of this procedure has the C3H8O structure. In contrast, you'll get ethanol (C2H5OH) through barley, corn, or cane fermentation.
Another difference is that you can consume ethanol in moderate amounts. But you can't drink IPA because it's a toxic solvent. Some similarities include disinfection, making cosmetics, and a solvent for lab procedures.
Is Ethanol Stronger than Isopropyl Alcohol?
The strength of ethanol or isopropyl alcohol depends on the operations you want to perform. For instance, some labs prefer cleaning with ethanol because the solvent lasts longer on surfaces than isopropyl alcohol. This feature makes ethyl alcohol perfect for killing stubborn germs.
40-60% IPA is more effective against viruses such as Feline Calicivirus (FCV) but unsuitable for non-enveloped viruses. In contrast, you'll need a stronger ethanol concentration (between 70-90%) or denatured alcohol to eradicate viruses.
So, buy the right product depending on the surfaces and microbes you want to disinfect.
Which is Better, 40 or 70 Alcohol?
70% ethanol is better and ideal for disinfection. But you might wonder: Doesn't more water increase the product's effectiveness?
And you're slightly right. Water enhances microbial cell death by increasing the rate of alcohol penetration and reducing the solvent's evaporation.
However, 40% ethanol is ineffective against certain bacteria. Why? Because dilution works up to a certain point.
And you don't want to lower your hygiene standards or spread infections. So, it's best to use a more potent product with an optimal alcohol-to-water ratio.