Is Isopropyl Alcohol an Acid or Base?

By Staff WriterLast Updated Mar 27, 2020 2:59:39 AM ET

Isopropyl alcohol is amphiprotic, meaning that it can act as both a weak acid and a weak base. Chemically, it can donate or accept a proton. This is a characteristic that is shared with water.

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When isopropyl alcohol donates a proton to another substance, it acts as an acid. When it accepts a proton from another substance, it acts as a base. Isopropyl alcohol forms a homogeneous solution when mixed with water. When added to salt solutions, it is insoluble. Isopropyl alcohol is used as a disinfectant, a solvent, and a water-drying additive for fuel and brake fluid. Isopropyl alcohol acts as a central nervous system depressant when ingested, making it unsafe for consumption.