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Old 05-19-2013, 03:50 PM   #1
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Default isopropyl alcohol as no-rinse sanitizer

What would be the dilution in order to use isopropyl alcohol and water in a spray bottle as a no-rinse sanitizer? I wouldn't use it in vessels or tubing - more like as a spray for fermenter lids before removing them, thermometer stems, outside of airlocks or blow off tubes before removing them etc.

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Old 05-19-2013, 04:04 PM   #2
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I know that the maximum effectiveness of isopropyl alcohol is at 70%. That is why it is sold at that concentration in stores. Using the 90+% alcohol is actually less effective. That stuff is often used to fuel lamps.

So, use the 70% stuff undiluted. I do not know if it is effective in brewery use, but I suppose it should be.

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Old 05-19-2013, 04:28 PM   #3
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I wouldn't use it as a spray. Especially for bucket lids / airlocks. Too big of a risk of it contaminating the beer. Isopropyl will wreck your liver. I use it as a topical sanitizer via alcahol wipes when I'm doing yeast starters. I wipe the rims of starter wort jars before I crack them, stuff like that, but it evaporates quickly and there is no risk of contaminating the beer. Also, keep in mind, it is extremely flammable and should be used with caution.

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Old 05-19-2013, 07:59 PM   #4
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I wouldn't use it as a spray. Especially for bucket lids / airlocks. Too big of a risk of it contaminating the beer. Isopropyl will wreck your liver. I use it as a topical sanitizer via alcahol wipes when I'm doing yeast starters. I wipe the rims of starter wort jars before I crack them, stuff like that, but it evaporates quickly and there is no risk of contaminating the beer. Also, keep in mind, it is extremely flammable and should be used with caution.
Excellent advice - I will stick with my trusty StarSan.
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Old 05-20-2013, 01:24 AM   #5
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As cheap and easy as starsan is, there is really no reason not to use it.

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Old 05-20-2013, 11:54 PM   #6
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I have seen it use in at least one package brewery as step one of a sterilizing routine, of a sampling spigot on a bright tank, but it was completely removed in step two as they then hit it with a blowtorch. A little overkill, but better safe than stuck with 100 bbl of infected beer.

We use it all the time in the pharma industry at 70% as a disinfectant for our manufacturing suites, but we also then do testing to ensure it's all evaporated prior to using anything.

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Old 05-21-2013, 12:12 AM   #7
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IPA in a spraybottle will flash very quickly. Not a good santitizer since it doesn't stick around long. I've got 70% and 91% here and they flash away very quickly.

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Old 05-21-2013, 12:34 AM   #8
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IPA in a spraybottle will flash very quickly. Not a good santitizer since it doesn't stick around long. I've got 70% and 91% here and they flash away very quickly.
So...a bottle of everclear diluted with boiled and/or distilled water to dilute to 70%?
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:41 AM   #9
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So...a bottle of everclear diluted with boiled and/or distilled water to dilute to 70%?
Same situation, it evaporates very quickly, probably not a great sanitizer. With a surfactant that would spread it out, maybe.

I'm not an expert, but I use IPA to clean things often, and it disappears so quickly that I'd be surprised if it is an effective disinfectant for brewing.

ON THE OTHER HAND, I know it's used in medical practices as the standard way of cleaning flesh, so maybe I'm wrong.
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Old 05-21-2013, 12:58 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by passedpawn View Post
Same situation, it evaporates very quickly, probably not a great sanitizer. With a surfactant that would spread it out, maybe.

I'm not an expert, but I use IPA to clean things often, and it disappears so quickly that I'd be surprised if it is an effective disinfectant for brewing.

ON THE OTHER HAND, I know it's used in medical practices as the standard way of cleaning flesh, so maybe I'm wrong.
I could have sworn the yeast book mentioned 70% ethanol as a sanitizer. I'll have to look.
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