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What's so Good About IPA?

Isopropyl alcohol (IPA) dissolves a wide range of non-polar compounds. It also evaporates quickly, leaves nearly zero oil traces, compared to ethanol, and is relatively non-toxic, compared to alternative solvents. Thus, it is used widely as a solvent and as a cleaning fluid, especially for dissolving oils.

So if you’ve never heard of IPA, it is a solvent based product that is considered to be a cleaner’s dream, commonly known as rubbing alcohol.

It’s one of the key ingredients in our popular vending glass cleaners such as  glass cleaner wipes and wet towels.

The endless uses of IPA also make it so popular for household users. So what is so good about Isopropyl Alcohol? Here’s 14 reasons:

1. Disinfectant-steriliser-anti-bacterial cleaning agent – Isopropyl Alcohol kills bacteria, fungus and viruses. Used to disinfect medicinal objects, prevents the spread of disease, and is commonly used to kill germs on all household surfaces. Isopropyl Alcohol 100% is recommended for cleaning purposes.

2. Stainless Steel Cleaner – removes all traces of finger prints in one wipe, and its high evaporation means that it has a streak-free finish. You can pretty much wipe down all surfaces to kill germs, and have a shiny new surface. IPA is perfect for cleaning stainless steel surfaces at it evaporates quickly leaving no smudges.

3. Can’t get those windows clean? IPA will do the trick, spray and wipe and it comes up clean and streak-free. Just like the use for stainless steel, IPA leaves no smudges!

4. Removes mould from blinds - to kill unwanted bacteria and germs, leaving the blinds sparkly new. You can also remove sticky residue like sap or chewing gum from surfaces and hands. Killing mould we mostly recommend IPA

5. Rubbing Alcohol – if you are needing to disinfect or kill bacteria on the skin, Isopropyl Alcohol 70% is recommended. The IPA 70% strength is perfectly dilute to kill bacteria without being too harsh on the skin.

6. Stain remover -Rubbing alcohol makes for an excellent stain remover when combined with water. It’s effective for everything from coffee and wine stains to ink, so leave that pricey bottle of stain remover on the grocery store shelf, and turn to what may become your new favourite household product. Simply combine one part rubbing alcohol to two parts water in a spray bottle. If you have a large enough spray bottle, you can pour in an entire bottle of rubbing alcohol, and then fill it up with water, add, and repeat. Just spray it onto any spots and spills, allow it to sit for a few minutes and then throw into the wash as you normally would.

7. Dissolve frost on your windshield -One of the worst things about an icy cold morning is having to scrape off all that frost off the windows of your vehicle. It’s bad enough having to get yourself out from under those warm, cozy covers, right? Instead of scraping and freezing yourself in the process, you could be savouring your morning coffee. Well, now you can. Just fill up a spray bottle with rubbing alcohol, spray it onto the glass and that frost will come right off.

8. Erase permanent marker -What parent hasn’t caught their little one creating “art” by decorating a countertop with a permanent marker at one point or another? If it hasn’t happened yet, it’s likely to in the future, but you don’t have to worry now. That’s because now you know that you can use rubbing alcohol to dissolve it into a liquid state – when that happens, it wipes right off.

9. A nail polish remover substitute - If you run out of nail polish remover, you can use rubbing alcohol in a pinch. It takes a little more rubbing, but it will work. Just douse a cotton ball with rubbing alcohol and rub it on the nail polish until it’s gone.

10. Cleaning garden tools -If you’ve been using your garden tools to remove any rotting, diseased or dead plants, it’s important to completely disinfect those tools or harmful bacteria will remain on the tools and get transferred to healthy plants. While there are sanitizers available on the market specifically for this purpose, they typically cost more, and you’re more likely to have rubbing alcohol on hand anyway. To disinfect them, clean them off with soap and water first, and then allow each tool to soak in rubbing alcohol for a minute or so. After it’s soaked in the rubbing alcohol, wipe it down with a clean rag and let it dry.

11. Use it as a de-greaser -Rubbing alcohol also makes a cheap and effective de-greaser. All you need to do is pour a bit onto a clean rag and wipe down your stove. Not only is it a lot less expensive than products designed to do the same thing, it may even work better. You can use it to wipe down all of your kitchen appliances, including chrome. They’ll be clean and almost as shiny as new. You don’t even have to rinse, as the rubbing alcohol dries almost immediately after you are done.

12. Clean the surface of your electronics - Electronics like computers, laptops, and especially cell phones, are a breeding ground for germs and bacteria. Disinfecting them regularly is a must, and rubbing alcohol is one of the best things you can use. Just dab some of it onto a cotton ball and use it to clean the surface of your phone, mouse, and keyboard.

13. Removing grass stains -Grass stains are particularly stubborn, they can be really challenging to get out, but rubbing alcohol can come to the rescue again. Just rub some into the grass stain and allow it to sit for 10 minutes before laundering as usual.

14. Remove stickers -Have you ever tried to get a price tag or another type of sticker or decal off something like a picture frame or a glass? It sometimes seems impossible to get the whole thing off without leaving the sticky residue behind. To do so, pour some rubbing alcohol on it first and then let it sit for 10 minutes. Because rubbing alcohol is a dissolvent, that sticker will peel off with ease.

Simple rubbing alcohol can be found in your local supermarkets and chemist, while concentrated IPA needs to be obtained from a chemical manufacturer.

Date Published: 27 August 2018