Question by  somerset (801)

Does rubbing alcohol go bad?

I've had mine in the closet for a long time. There is no expiration date.


Answer by  ChemDoc (154)

No, not really. It is probably just fine to use, regardless of storage time. This is the reason why there is no expiration date. Rubbing alcohol is "isopropyl alcohol," sometimes with additives for color or fragrance. It is stable when stored in normal household conditions, though the container and any additives may degrade with time and exposure to heat.


Answer by  Qwitzon (578)

Rubbing alcohol does not go bad in a sealed, inert (non-reactive) container. If there is no evidence that the material of the container is degrading (the seal, the plastic, etc) and there is nothing else dissolved in it (some have scents added), then it is ready to be used.


Answer by  Gabriel59 (21)

If it was kept in the bottle its still good. Rubbing alochol is usually a mix of water and ethanol, usually from 95% to 70% alcohol/water ratio. Nothing grows in it, and if it is kept safely, the alcohol doesnt evaporate. Anyway, if you are really concerned, you should just buy a new bootle to avoid worries.

posted by Anonymous
Rubbing alcohol is the same as isopropyl alcohol. It is not composed of ethanol and water. Ethanol is the alcohol used to drink. The two alcohols are chemically different formulas.  add a comment
posted by Anonymous
That's sad. Rubbing alcohol is 50-70% ISOPROPYL alcohol not ethanol which is the drinking kind of alcohol. In principal, the isopropyl alcohol can oxidize after opening and form mostly acetone. Acetone is somewhat toxic and you don't want to put it on your skin.  add a comment

Answer by  ScottHorn (232)

Rubbing alcohol, usually a mixture of isopropanol and water, will not go bad if stored properly. Both components are quite stable. If stored improperly, for example without a lid, the isopropanol will evaporate over time, leaving mostly water. If stored in a sealed container, rubbing alcohol lasts for many years.

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