What happens when isopropyl (rubbing) alcohol expires?
January 21, 2011 2:46am CST
I was too lazy to go to the sink and wash my hands so I grabbed my officemate's alcohol bottle and used rubbed alcohol on my hands. As I was putting it back, I noticed that there's an expiration date in the bottle. I was surprised to see an expiration date, but then again, everything has an end, so why not alcohol. Out of curiosity, I googled my discussion subject and got an answer from yahoo answers. To quote the best answer: "Isopropyl alcohol oxidizes to acetone and can slowly form ethers and epoxides. This occurs very slowly while the bottle is closed but it happens much faster (but still pretty slowly) once the bottle is opened. So yes, rubbing alcohol expires. Once it's reached the expiration date, throw it out" I'm not sure if it's true. What do you think? Also, what's the effect of using acetone, ether and epoxides on your hands, if you accidentally use expired isoprpyl alcohol that turned into these 3.