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Everything You Wanted to Know About Isopropyl Alcohol

iFixit: “Isopropyl alcohol is having a moment. Not an uplifting celebration, unfortunately. It’s more of a panicked where-can-I-find-it, is-this-the-same-stuff moment. Isopropyl alcohol is a disinfectant at its higher percentages, and you can use it to make homemade hand sanitizer. As such, there’s a shortage, and recent prices are triple what they were a month ago. Given the trickier supply and uncertainty, we want to help where we can. We know, rely on, and recommend isopropyl alcohol (a.k.a. isopropanol, or IPA) for many of our techniques and guides. It’s pretty simple stuff, but it is sold in different ways, and recommended for a myriad of uses. Understandably, people have questions. Is “rubbing alcohol” or “surgical spirit” the same thing? What percentage of isopropyl do I need for electronics work or disinfecting? Can I use anything else on my electronics? And, hey, is this stuff going to catch on fire if I cause a spark? Let’s clean up these questions…”

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