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Isopropanol for cleaning circuit boards.

Discussion in 'd.i.y.' started by Chops54, Aug 6, 2016.

  1. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    I have some 99.9% isopropanol that I intend using to clean some circuit boards. Can I use it neat or do I need to dilute it?
  2. Nick1881

    Nick1881 pfm Member

    Neat it will be fine, I wouldn't attempt to dilute it.
  3. Ragaman

    Ragaman Mentalist

    I thought about doing this with some older equipment, what benefits will be achieved & what do you use to clean with.
  4. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    Thanks Nick.

    Ragaman, these are just built NCC200s and I want to clean off the flux residue etc.

    Edit. I'll use a reasonably stiff toothbrush to clean away the debris.
  5. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    It works well, I cleaned my work on the Leak Stereo 20 and Verdier pre up a while back. Makes things look really neat! I just used a small paint brush and a few cotton buds.
  6. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    Ta Tony.

    I think I have a couple of LPs in my stash. I better top it up a bit and have a drive over.
  7. Dougie2404

    Dougie2404 cranky old git

    Si, I think I may have a couple in mine, but I'm not sure, if so grab them for me and I'll sort it out with you when I next see you, cheers pal.
  8. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    Anything for you Dougie. I'll give you a call this evening. No worries if you're going out.
  9. Ragaman

    Ragaman Mentalist

    Would isopropyl alcohol work or is this the same substance as i have some at hand.
  10. Tony L

    Tony L Administrator

    99% Isopropyl is what I used. It's all the same stuff IIRC.

    PS Si, welcome anytime, will be good to see you.
  11. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    Cheers Tony, I'll see how I'm placed next week but I'll message you beforehand.

    Yes sorry Ragaman, I should have said isopropyl alcohol, 99.9%. I get it from the print shop next door to my workshop and it has the trade name Isopropanol on the drum.
  12. 337alant

    337alant Negatively Biased

    99.9% is excelent for everything, cleaning circuit boards or cleaning tape heads on a professional recorder, I buy it by the gallon on ebay, you can use it mixed appropriately for cleaning your records
    I even recovered the wifes Samsung S5 dropped in the toilet with this stuff ;)

  13. cubastreet

    cubastreet Espresso Fiend

    Isopropanol isn't a trade name, it's just another name for the same thing. Just like ethanol = ethyl alcohol.
  14. Mistrale

    Mistrale Formerly known as A60hacker

    "Isopropanol isn't a trade name, it's just another name for the same thing. Just like ethanol = ethyl alcohol."

    +1 for that, but as with methanol, don't drink it :eek:
  15. TheDecameron

    TheDecameron Unicorns fart glitter.

    It's not as toxic as methanol, should you be minded to serve it at your cocktail party. The problem with methanol is that it's metabolised to formic acid which is lousy for your brain etc. -it will literally make you blind drunk.
    Ironically the treatment for methanol poisoning is....ethanol. Hooray!
  16. Mistrale

    Mistrale Formerly known as A60hacker

    Methanol is sometimes found in rough cider, apparently, and makes drinkers' noses grow (no, not a Pinocchio tale).

    Boccaccio - what's isopropanol like to drink, and to what is it metabolised ?

    Si - sorry he went off-topic, and be reassured that neat isopropyl alcohol ("isoprop") is harmless and effective when used for cleaning soldered work - I've done it many times without apparent ill-effect. YMMV ...
  17. Simon Dawson

    Simon Dawson Angry, Ill & Ugly

    You just need to be careful using IPA for cleaning older PCBs. When I use it on a Pioneer SA 500A which I think may have phenolic based boards it made a nasty milky deposit which I eventually managed to clean off with a mix of dish washing detergent and water. Like they say on the label: 'try on an inconspicuous area first'.
  18. Chops54

    Chops54 pfm Member

    Thanks guys. I only asked because the chap I get it from told me it takes paint off if used neat and obviously I dilute for record cleaning etc. I don't usually bother cleaning off pcb's after soldering so I can't understand why I've suddenly started doing this. Must be an age thing. No worries about going off topic. I enjoy the anecdotes but please don't encourage me to drink it :D

    Edit. Thanks Simon, I'm only using it for cleaning new boards but I will bear that in mind.
  19. Mistrale

    Mistrale Formerly known as A60hacker

    " off pcb's after soldering..." One thinks of capacitance arising around/in the flux left behind ?

    "...please don't encourage me to drink it..." Decameron, you have a question !
  20. mega lord

    mega lord Centre tapped

    Also i don't think it is safe to use on polystyrene caps.


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