View Full Version : Most affordable 50/50 mix buy? Washer fluid has gone "green" now..

07-30-2012, 06:01 PM
At least locally the washer fluid isn't alcohol anymore. Is there another cheap way to get some alcohol/water mix?

Am I going to have to ship some 49 state washer fluid here? :P

07-30-2012, 07:21 PM
Buy methanol and mix it? Hardware stores have it here, parts stores have it... they might name it different though look for...


Methyl alcohol
Methyl hydrate
Methyl hydroxide
Methylic alcohol

Wood alcohol
wood naptha
wood spirits.

Methyl Hydrate or methyl hydroxide seem most common.

It is the middle of summer though, it's really a winter washer fluid so if supplies are short, it might just be temporary. It would be idiotic to push ethanol WF as greener than methanol WF, because methanol can be made from a wider variety of biomass wastes and even direct from CO2, and is biodegradable int he environment. Trouble is, the waste feedstock means farmers don't get paid well if methanol is popular, but ethanol they can afford to lobby for.

07-30-2012, 07:29 PM
Blue winter windshield washer stuff should be 50/50, didn't know Cal had issues there too, :banghead:

07-30-2012, 07:33 PM
"Fondue fuel" is often methanol, but ay have varying mixes of water and other alcohols in it. It has to burn so will be higher than 50, but you may have more or less luck with diluting it further depending what the mixes are. If it's like 75% methyl hydrate for example, the balance will be water, so just add a third of that volume to it to make 50%

07-30-2012, 07:42 PM
The People's Republic of Kalifornia has deemed 50/50 washer fluid evil... You can't even get 99% Isopropyl alcohol, and when you do find it (at the electronics store of all places!), they have a sticker on it saying that if you live in CA you must dilute it!

VOCs don'tcha know!...


07-30-2012, 07:54 PM
Thanks, I'll try to find something cheap at the hardware stores if I can't load up on WW fluid out of state. R dub I have seen some of those items before, but IIRC the prices were ridiculously higher than windshield washer fluid.

California Air Resources Board now regulates VOC % in "AWWF" it looks like. Its 1% max in this area. Coming soon to a state near you!

07-30-2012, 08:03 PM
Damn, so another reason to not move to SoCal, :p

07-30-2012, 08:05 PM
Places that encourage indoor gardening of certain....green plants often carry 99% pure isopropal as well. I think it's used in making hash.

Most drug stores carry 70% pure rubbing alcohol too.

I can't believe you're supposed to mix it. Like it's bad all of a sudden?

07-30-2012, 08:09 PM
Its literally GREEN too... :P

07-30-2012, 08:39 PM
Yup, gotta go to the electronics store to buy "technical" grade, otherwise 70%im is the best you'll find here ...

They're the government, they know what's best. They will save you from yourself, even if you don't want saving! Or more importantly, correct you if your thinking is "wrong".


07-30-2012, 09:06 PM
Interesting thing about isopropyl is that it won't hold on to salty water.... this means you can takea bottle of 70% put a few spoons of salt in it, shake the hell out of it, and water will drop out at the bottom as you leave it standing. So then you carefully decant the stronger IPA off the top and leave the water behind.....

Not quite sure if you can get it to 99%, will have to look that up again... high 90s though...

What I would do is put a mark 30% of the way up the bottle, add salt, shake, let stand, is the separation line at the mark? No? add more salt, shake, stand? Now? if not add more... excess salt will just sink to the bottom anyway...

This is the only alcohol this trick works with IIRC (Well common one, there might be some weird ones that do it)

---------- Post added at 09:06 PM ---------- Previous post was at 09:05 PM ----------

Oh this also means that if you're ATVing or motocrossing on the beach and dump your machine in a tide pool etc, then don't bother flushing the electronics, fuel system etc through with IPA to get the water out, it won't work, you'll have to use denatured ethanol or something.

07-31-2012, 01:31 AM
Only extreme cold climates would have a 50/50 mix blue washer fluid. As you get to warmer climates the ratio is less. The best I could find around here was about 30% methanol. Worst thing I liked about it was the staining and crap it left on everything in the system. Even the screen filter on the nozzle seemed to be restricted after awhile.

Most race fuel distributors and race tracks carry M1 or M5 methanol. Mix it yourself carefully or run it straight.

07-31-2012, 12:41 PM
I run the orange/pink RainX stuff. Not sure of it's mix ratio but the stuff is awesome. Depending on the car anything above 40MPH or so and you don't even have to run the wipers at all.

example. http://automotive.hardwarestore.com/89-548-windshield-washer-fluid/rain-x-all-season-windshield-washer-fluid-665530.aspx



07-31-2012, 12:49 PM
I wasn't getting the impression he wanted to clean his windshield with it :D

07-31-2012, 12:51 PM
Oh forgot people are running that stuff for water injection.

07-31-2012, 07:01 PM
I don't see why an ethanol mix wouldn't work pretty good though, issues would be, what other crap they put in it to denature it. Methanol was easier to get historically, it's been a lingering prohibition issue with the ethanol, basically they have to screw it up somehow. However, you can't beef up an ethanol/water mix with methanol or it will separate, those two don't play nice together in the presence of water, but you could put IPA in it.

If you want to get some strong ethanol/water mix to use instead, I think you can rinse it out of E85... by adding water, shaking it up and letting it stand, don't overdo the water though.... think it will hold about 5% water by volume (could vary depending on other additives) , so adding more than 5% should start getting it out, but you go too far and it would be too dilute. Do small batches, put the leftover gas part in the freezer, strain the ice crystals and put it aside for the mower, or stick it in your N/A car.

---------- Post added at 07:01 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:59 PM ----------

Well a N/A car that you're driving, don't leave that leftover standing in a vehicle, very very slightly acidic, be fine if you're just running it right through, but leaving it in contact with metals for months could be bad.

09-04-2012, 06:12 AM
Howabout now???

Just noticed all the stores are stocking up on the blue stuff again.

09-04-2012, 08:40 AM
Damn, so another reason to not move to SoCal,

As if we needed more. :p

09-07-2012, 11:54 AM
I'll check the stores to see if the blue stuff is back. I might try mixing water with e85 and see what it does. Isn't any other way cheap az enough for me. There is an e85 station about 30 minutes drive.


If that doesn't work, 100% water.

09-07-2012, 04:02 PM
Just buy a 5 gallon can of methanol, then mix it with .99 cent/gallon bottles of distilled water.

The race gas sellers sell methanol. Last time I bought it, I got it at that place near U Pick Part in Sun Valley, CA. Forget the name, Manning Fuels I think.

09-17-2012, 01:13 PM
Guys, here's an option that maybe Cali can't mess with, air brake antifreeze, its 99% meth.