# What is the difference between IPA and Ethanol in terms of solubility?

I have read an article online that says that ethanol could be used in a solvent extraction of two solids, but it also says that isopropyl alcohol could also be used, but must be used in higher concentrations. Why?

From some preliminary internet searches, I have discovered that:

"Isopropyl alcohol is a slightly bigger molecule than ethanol (Methanol is $\ce{CH4O}$, Ethanol is $\ce{C2H6O}$ and Isopropyl alcohol is $\ce{C3H8O}$) and is often cheaper to make. It is not as poisonous as methanol (an ounce of methanol can kill you and a third of an ounce causes blindness). So it is useful as a solvent in the same way acetone is useful as a solvent."

So would this suggest that if one were to use IPA as a solvent, one could use the same amount of IPA as they would Acetone?

One final question. It would be best to use 99% pure solvents (mostly free of water), however for an ethanol replacement, I have seen a product used for ethanol fireplaces where the MSDS mentions 95% ethanol and 5% 2-propanol. Would this be an acceptable substitute for 99% ethanol? Thanks a lot.

• This question is too broad to be answered well. – Lighthart Jan 21 '15 at 19:12