Alcohol or bleach are both effective at disinfecting surfaces. However, did you know there is actually a counterintuitive rule of thumb you need to follow when cleaning with alcohol? This has something to do with the alcohol’s percentage by volume.
You probably assume that alcohol solutions with higher percentage are more powerful and effective when it comes to killing germs. Lower percent alcohol indicates that there is more water that dilutes the mix in a bottle. However, microbiology states that 70% isopropyl alcohol is actually more effective and potent than 91% for disinfecting, depending on the specific kind of germs that you want to kill.
Isopropyl alcohol or also called rubbing alcohol is a type of disinfectant often used by hospitals, clean rooms, and pharmaceutical companies. This is also used for the purification of medical devices and electronics during manufacturing.
Isopropyl alcohol is available with different purity grades and each of them is used for a specific purpose. In general, isopropyl alcohol is beneficial and effective for disinfecting and cleaning.
So, why is lower percentage alcohol a much better weapon for fighting off germs? Is rubbing alcohol flammable after it dries?
Basically, a 91% alcohol is too powerful in certain instances. It can fry the exterior of the cell before it gets inside and kills the actual germ. On the other hand, 70% alcohol is the correct proportion of alcohol and water for zapping the entire cell.
How to prepare 70% isopropyl alcohol from 91%
As far as the health and safety of you, your family, friends, and colleagues are concerned, you need to use only the best.
When preparing 70% isopropyl alcohol using 91% isopropyl alcohol, it is important to remember that diluting it too much might only lead to spreading germs instead of killing them. Make sure that you measure the ingredients when you prepare the recipe since the health and safety of your loved ones will count on it. If you are doubt, it is best to just toss it out.
The ingredients you will need include:
- Tap water 2 fl oz. (0.5 fl oz = 1 Tablespoon )
- 8 fl oz of 91% Isopropyl Alcohol
Follow these steps to make 71% isopropyl alcohol from 91% isopropyl alcohol:
- Mix water with 91% isopropyl alcohol in a clean spray bottle. Shake gently to mix well.
- Store the mixed alcohol solution in the spray bottle for a more convenient measured dispensing. Keep the bottle stored away from sources of direct sunlight, spark, or heat. This mixture doesn’t expire. The contents of the bottle will be able to kill viruses and germs provided that the ABV stays at more than 70%.
And as simple as that, you now have your 70% isopropyl alcohol. Your alcohol solution disinfectant spray is now all done and ready for killing those pesky viruses and germs. Follow these simple steps and stay safe!