Methanol antifreeze


Log in or Sign up. Do you typically use methanol or glycol in your loops? ClarkTMay 19, We use Glycol. You will need to check with your local authorities, not all will allow methanol. BergyMay 19, We use methanol. It is allowed. Both will work well they just need to be handled differently in regard to your circulator pumps head capabilities. Glycol is viscous and needs higher head pressures than methanol to achieve the magic number. Also dictate minimume hole size vs pipe diameter.

Check DWR website for download of new rules. Last I spoke with Jim Goddard, they may also be requiring that you list the anticipated antifreeze on the permit. Sound GeothermalMay 20, Doc I, too, think methanol gets a bad rap. As with many things, there are tradeoffs. For me, the decison to use methanol had to due with the ease of pumping against glycol here in our heating dominated climate. I have no scientific study to offer up. I had a woman look at me cross eyed when I told her I used methanol as an antifreeze in my pond loop.

What if it leaks she asked? I replied, highly doubtful, but if it did what effect do you think 15 gallons of methanol will have inthousand gallons of pond water?Antifreeze is an additive that can alter the freezing and boiling points of the coolant in internal combustion engines that use water cooling. As the name implies, the main purpose of these additives is to prevent the liquid coolant from freezing, which can cause extensive engine damage.

Various substances have been used as antifreeze in the past, but most current automotive applications use ethylene glycol.

Ethylene glycol is the most widespread type of automotive antifreeze. Naturally colorless, it is typically dyed bright green. The history of antifreeze can be traced back to the early days of automotive engineering. The first automotive antifreeze was methyl alcohol, or methanol, which has a lower freezing point than water.

That made it a good antifreeze, but other characteristics of methanol rendered it a poor automotive antifreeze. In particular, alcohol tends to corrode the metals that it comes into contact with inside cooling systems. After methyl alcohol, ethylene glycol was the next popular antifreeze to come along. By the end of World War II, during which it was widely used to cool military vehicles, ethylene glycol was the dominant type of automotive antifreeze.

methanol antifreeze

Ethylene glycol and pressurized cooling systems were so effective, in fact, that air cooled engines were all but killed off in automotive applications.

In recent history, a number of developments have been made in the field of antifreeze. Propylene glycol is now used in some applications due to a slightly lower toxicity, and some antifreeze mixtures also contain organic acid technology OAT chemicals.

Also see: The History of Antifreeze. The main job of antifreeze is to lower the freezing point of coolant, which is important due to the way that water expands when it freezes. Since cooling systems are closed off, frozen coolant will tend to expand and cause catastrophic engine failure by deforming or cracking coolant passages in the cylinder block and head.

Water expands when it freezes, which can spell big trouble for a cooling system. In addition to lowering the freezing temperature of water, antifreeze also raises its boiling temperature.

In automotive usage, methanol is the type of alcohol that was used as antifreeze. Alcohol in general, and methanol in particular, is an excellent antifreeze, and it is still used in some windshield washer fluid solutions and other applications.

However, it tends to cause corrosion when it comes into contact with metal inside cooling systems. It is particularly corrosive to aluminum, which is an issue to to the widespread use of aluminum in the manufacture of cylinder heads and, to a lesser extent, blocks.

Although ethylene glycol first saw widespread use in the manufacture of high explosives, and it is still used widely in a variety of industrial applications, it is the most common type of automotive antifreeze.

It is also miscible in water, which means it can be mixed in virtually any proportion to create engine coolant. In fact, straight ethylene glycol has roughly half the specific heat capacity as straight water. That basically means that water is twice as effective at transferring heat away from an engine. However, mixing water and ethylene glycol together effectively changes the freezing and boiling points without giving up too much in the area of heat transfer ability.

Ethylene glycol provides a good mix of low freezing point and acceptable heat transfer characteristics when mixed with water. This is due to the ethylene glycol preventing hydrogen bonds in the water, and the water preventing the ethylene glycol from crystallizing. Since ethylene glycol is miscible in water, different ratios can be used to achieve the desired coolant characteristics. Some common ratios of ethylene glycol to water include:. Antifreeze toxicity is a concern due to the widespread use of ethylene glycol.

It is particularly dangerous to pets and small children due to their low body weights and the fact that antifreeze can have a sweet taste.

In order to combat this, antifreeze often has a bittering agent mixed in. In some jurisdictions, this is actually required by law. Propylene glycol is somewhat less toxic than ethylene glycol, and it is used in many industries where toxicity is an issue.

In fact, it can actually be used as an additive to food products like ice cream and baked goods. Another non-toxic antifreeze alternative is glycerol, which saw brief automotive usage before the widespread adoption of ethylene glycol.Methanol is a nondrinking type of alcohol also known as wood alcohol and methyl alcohol which is mostly used to create fuel, solvents and antifreeze.

A colorless liquid, it is volatile, flammable, and unlike ethanolpoisonous for human consumption. Methanol is also used to produce a variety of other chemicals, including acetic acid. Small amounts of methanol occur naturally in many living organisms as part of their metabolic processes. For example, methanol occurs naturally in many fruits and vegetables.

Methanol has chemical properties which allow it to lower the freezing point of a water-based liquid and increase its boiling point. These attributes lead methanol to be used as an antifreeze in windshield washer fluid to keep the cleaning fluid from freezing.

It is also injected in natural gas pipelines, where it lowers the freezing point of water during oil and gas transport. Methanol is primarily used as an industrial solvent to help create inks, resins, adhesives, and dyes. It is also used as a solvent in the manufacture of important pharmaceutical ingredients and products such as cholesterol, streptomycin, vitamins and hormones.

Methanol can be used as a type of vehicle fuel or marine fuel for boats. It can also be blended into gasoline to produce an efficient fuel known as methyl tertiary butyl ether MTBE which can have lower emissions than conventional gasoline. Methanol also is used in biodiesel, a renewable type of fuel made from plants or animal fats that can be used in place of, or blended into, conventional fuel. Methanol occurs naturally in many foods, including fruits and vegetables. Dietary methanol helps to regulate human gene activity.

It is also created in the human digestive system to help metabolize food. The U. OSHA also sets permissible exposure limits on methanol in industrial settings to help protect worker safety. Exposure to methanol at the levels found in the diet from fruits and vegetables, both naturally occurring and from currently permitted levels of aspartame, would not be expected to result in adverse effectsaccording to the Committee on Toxicity of Chemicals in Food, Consumer Products and the Environment COTan independent scientific committee that provides advice to the Food Standards Agency, the Department of Health and other Government Departments and Agencies on matters concerning the toxicity of chemicals in the United Kingdom.

The distillation of wood is the process in which wood is heated to form charcoal and vapors.

What is Antifreeze?

The vapors are condensed and collected to form a brownish liquid, creating methanol. Methanol is poisonous, and it is one of the chemicals that can be used in small amounts to denature alcohol also known as ethanol to keep people from drinking ethanol products such as mouth wash and fuel blends.

In the body, when the artificial sweetener aspartame is digested, it is broken down into the metabolites phenylalanine, aspartic acid, and methanol. According to American Cancer Society, drinking a liter of diet soda with aspartame would lead to the consumption of 55 milligrams mg of methanol, as compared to as much as mg of methanol from a liter of fruit juice.In the majority of the USA and Canada, residential geothermal heat pump earth loops must be protected from freezing.

Many people that have contacted us have asked, "If I bury my earth loop deeper, will I still need to use antifreeze to protect my earth loop from freezing? If your earth loop is installed above the frost line, yes it will freeze, but even if you install your earth loop below the frost line, the fluid may still freeze.

methanol antifreeze

Freezing in an earth loop is caused by the geothermal heat pump taking heat from the loop fluid, not the winter air temperatures. The more undersized a loop, the longer it takes for the earth to recharge the heat in it, as the geothermal heat pump removes the heat. We have been asked, "Can't we just design bigger earth loops, so the earth loop fluid doesn't drop below the freezing temperature? However, earth loops must be designed for a reasonable payback period.

If we design to keep earth loop fluid above freezing, it can require twice as much pipe in the earth loop in many geographical locations, and in some places it requires 3 or 4 times as much pipe. For years methanol was the choice for many geothermal heat pump installers. It also has good heat transfer ability it holds acceptable amounts of heat, compared to water. However, methanol is extremely poisonous to humans and other animals. It evaporates quickly, and can asphyxiate a person if all of the safety precautions are not followed.

Methanol is also highly flammable, and can cause an explosion.

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Methanol is not our preferred antifreeze, because of the danger of fire and explosion when working with it, and because of the restrictions that have been imposed on it by many local and state health codes.

Ethanol is another antifreeze that has been used for geothermal earth loops. Ethanol is also very flammable and can cause explosions and asphyxiation. Pure ethanol the type of alcohol that people drink is not as toxic as methanol, but pure ethanol is too expensive to be used as an antifreeze, so denatured ethanol is used instead.

These denaturing agents are generally very toxic. Ethanol can be denatured with methanol, pine-based solvent, gasoline, rubbing alcohol, or other such chemicals.

Ethanol that is denatured with petroleum-based products will dissolve earth loop piping, and can't be used for earth loop antifreeze. Some brands of ethanol-antifreeze are available that have been specifically designed for use in geothermal earth loops. They contain denaturing agents that are safe for geothermal pipe.

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We have used a brand called " Geosafe " safe for pipes, but still dangerous for peoplebut there are others available. Ethylene Glycol is a very poisonous antifreeze. Also, most states have prohibited its use, because of the dangers of contaminating and poisoning groundwater.An antifreeze is an additive which lowers the freezing point of a water-based liquid.

An antifreeze mixture is used to achieve freezing-point depression for cold environments. Common antifreezes increase the boiling point of the liquid, allowing higher coolant temperature. Because water has good properties as a coolantwater plus antifreeze is used in internal combustion engines and other heat transfer applications, such as HVAC chillers and solar water heaters. The purpose of antifreeze is to prevent a rigid enclosure from bursting due to expansion when water freezes.

Commercially, both the additive pure concentrate and the mixture diluted solution are called antifreeze, depending on the context. Careful selection of an antifreeze can enable a wide temperature range in which the mixture remains in the liquid phasewhich is critical to efficient heat transfer and the proper functioning of heat exchangers. Secondarily but not less importantly, most if not all commercial antifreeze formulations intended for use in heat transfer applications include different kinds of anti-corrosion and anti- cavitation agents that preserve the entire hydraulic circuit from progressive wear.

Water was the original coolant for internal combustion engines.

methanol antifreeze

It is cheap, nontoxic, and has a high heat capacity. These problems are addressed by the development of alternative coolants with improved properties.

Freezing and boiling points are colligative properties of a solution, which depend on the concentration of dissolved substances. Hence salts lower the melting points of aqueous solutions. Salts are frequently used for de-icingbut salt solutions are not used for cooling systems because they induce corrosion of metals.

Low molecular weight organic compounds tend to have melting points lower than water, which recommends them as antifreeze agents. Solutions of organic compounds, especially alcoholsin water are effective. Alcohols - ethanol, methanol, ethylene glycol, etc. The term engine coolant is widely used in the automotive industry, which covers its primary function of convective heat transfer for internal combustion engines.

When used in an automotive context, corrosion inhibitors are added to help protect vehicles' radiatorswhich often contain a range of electrochemically incompatible metals aluminumcast ironcopperbrasssolderet cetera. Water pump seal lubricant is also added.

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Antifreeze was developed to overcome the shortcomings of water as a heat transfer fluid.Discussion in ' General Discussions ' started by LoobyJan 12, Log in or Sign up. Antifreeze opinions -- methanol vs.

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Any opinions on choice of antifreeze -- specifically, ethanol versus ethanol a. My geo contractor routinely uses methanol in preference to propylene glycol, but I get the feeling that he's never given ethanol serious consideration.

Methanol and ethanol appear to be very similar with respect to pumping pressure drops and Reynolds numbers, but I find WF's argument's in favor of ethanol rather appealing: - non-toxic -- essentially, pumping 50 proof vodka around the loop - slightly higher specific heat than methanol very slightly - less corrosive than methanol -- although neither is likely to be a problem Looby.

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LoobyJan 12, I guess price would be a factor. Palace GeoThermalJan 12, WF gets a lot for their Environol. I can't remember the quote I got at the time, but it was an easy decision.

In Iowa, they restrict anything other than ethylene glycol if put under 20' in the ground. Methanol was fine for my horizontal loops. Methanol I believe methanol has a lower viscosity and equivalent freeze protection at lower concentrations.

The best heat transfer fluid is water itself, so you generally want to minimize the amount of antifreeze added.

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Combined with the ease of being able to source methanol locally made the decision for me. Keep in mind, methanol is highly flammable. Environol I just had the glycol in my system flushed this past friday and replaced with Environol.

It seems to work better as our 4 ton Envision has not had any "water flow" issues in 4 days and we are keeping the house at 68 degrees.

I was "short looped" by my installer to begin with and this was their answer to fix our heating problems. We'll see how well this solutuion holds as colder temps are expected in CT later on this week. I don't know the reason as to why is so expensive, this is just ethanol. Palace GeoThermalJan 13, My system was around gal. I dumped 20 gal into the system getting me into the deg protection.

Methanol or Glycol

My loop EWT is around 50 at this time. Keep in mind Methanol and Ethanol are very flammable, the flash point on Methanol is 54 deg F. This means at temps above 54, its giving off enough vapor to ignite with an source. I would dilute it down before adding to the flush cart just to be on the safe side. Just curious. LoobyJan 13, DickRussellJan 14, LoobyJan 14, You must log in or sign up to reply here.

Show Ignored Content.The flash point of a chemical is the lowest temperature where it will evaporate enough fluid to form a combustible concentration of gas.

Gods Autobiography - 006 Drinking Antifreeze

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