Methylated Spirits Vs Isopropyl Alcohol: What Is Best For Cleaning?

Methylated Spirits Vs Isopropyl Alcohol: What Is Best For Cleaning?

By : angila

Have you ever noticed that most of your disinfectants and sanitisers mention isopropyl as an ingredient? Isopropyl is a pure alcohol that has antibacterial properties and is perfect for antiseptics and cleansers.

This pure alcohol can also be diluted with water and used as a cleaning agent for your electronics. Even end of lease cleaning in Melbourne professionals use isopropyl alcohol as a natural cleaner for professional vacate cleaning of homes.

But isopropyl alcohol should not be confused with methylated spirits when it comes to cleaning as these two substances have very different chemical compositions.

While isopropyl is pure alcohol with no additives, methylated spirits are ethyl alcohol mixed with other toxic substances like methanol.

Thus, you must know more about these compounds before using them for cleaning your home surfaces by reading the tips below.

Differences Between Isopropyl Alcohol And Methylated Spirits

The main difference between isopropyl alcohol and methylated spirits is that the former is a pure alcoholic substance that is safe to consume and use around the home. On the other hand, methylated spirits contain toxic chemicals like methanol that are added to ethyl alcohol (ethanol) to make it unfit for drinking.

Besides this, methylated spirits are colourless, foul-smelling substances that are poisonous if ingested and can cause severe infections. This is why methylated spirits cannot be used as an antiseptic or disinfectant. On the other hand, isopropyl alcohol has powerful antibacterial properties as it can kill 99.9% of germs. It can be used as a disinfectant to clean electronic appliances and surfaces to remove and kill germs. 

Methylated Spirits Vs Isopropyl Alcohol

In terms of cleaning power, both these substances are highly effective cleaning agents but must be used with caution because of their explosive composition. Here are some factors that will help you see which substance is best for cleaning and for which areas of your home should you use them:

Take Precautionary Measures When Using These Liquids

Before you see which liquid is better for cleaning, end-of-lease cleaners in Melbourne recommend taking preventive measures. Always wear a face mask and rubber gloves when using Methylated Spirits and Isopropyl Alcohol for cleaning, as they are highly potent and flammable substances that can irritate your skin and become poisonous if ingested.


Make sure you never mix cleaning products like bleach and rubbing alcohol together.

Isopropyl Alcohol: Powerful Disinfectant For Your Home 

Generally, isopropyl alcohol is considered safer for cleaning than methylated spirits as it contains pure alcohol and no added chemicals. The most effective use of isopropyl alcohol or rubbing alcohol is as a disinfectant in your home, since it directly attacks and breaks down the cell walls of germs and kills them. Besides being a good disinfectant, you can also use it around your home in the following ways:

  • Disinfect your kitchen countertops and shelves
  • Remove grease and oil stains and spills from appliances
  • Remove marks and fingerprints from surfaces
  • Disinfect electronics as it leaves no chemical residues
  • Clean dirt and grime from blinds
  • Scrub sinks and drains
  • Remove fouls odours from shoes
  • Shine up stainless appliances


You can also use rubbing alcohol to make a strong natural bug repellent.

Methylated Spirits: Can Be Used On A Variety Of Surfaces

On the other hand, methylated spirits are highly toxic if ingested or inhaled as they contain highly potent and dangerous chemicals like methanol that can cause heart diseases and skin infections. Thus, end-of-lease cleaners in Melbourne suggest using these denatured alcoholic substances in limited quantities when cleaning your home and always diluting them with water to stay safe. Here are some important areas you can clean in your home with methylated spirits:

  • Dilute it with water to kill mould hotspots in your home
  • Clean and scrub a variety of surfaces like wood, plastic and glass
  • Powerful at removing grease and oil stains easily
  • Wipe away grime from chrome taps
  • Easily remove stains and discolorations from grout


Always keep your windows open to ensure proper ventilation when using methylated spirits so you do not inhale any toxic additives.

Thus, both methylated spirits and isopropyl alcohol are strong cleaning agents that have different purposes and uses in your home. If you are looking for a powerful disinfectant to kill bacteria and germs in your home, then it is better to use isopropyl alcohol for wiping your surfaces.

However, if you have sensitive surfaces that can get damaged by pure alcohol, you can opt for a neutral cleaner like methylated spirits. You can also remove mould more effectively with methylated spirits as it kills the spores on the spot.

But when it comes to your electronics like mobiles and laptops, rubbing alcohol is a perfect cleaning agent as it leaves no chemical residues that can damage the screen. Thus, you need to determine your cleaning purpose to use these two natural substances in your home.


You can also use other natural cleaners like vinegar to clean your home.

Wrapping Up

You can use both methylated spirits and isopropyl alcohol for cleaning your home surfaces but remember to wear a mask and gloves as they are highly potent and flammable substances. Generally, isopropyl alcohol is considered safer and better for cleaning and disinfecting your home as it has no toxic additives and kills germs effectively.

However, if you require a more neutral cleaner that is effective at shining up any surface in your home, whether it be plastic, wood or glass, it is better to use a diluted form of methylated spirits.