Dichloromethane cleaning

Is it safe to drink out of a bottle that use to contain Dichloromethane? What should I use to clean a bottle of Dichloromethane? Is there any chemicals that I could use to dissolve the Dichloromethane and make it safe to drink out of?

More info:

So if I had a glass bottle containing >= 99.5% Dichloromethane with amylene as a stabilizer and left out overnight is that safe? The bottle was used in a chemistry department so it is high quality, I would assume. Made from the company Sigma-Aldrich and in a Glass bottle.

• Why on earth would you want to drink anything out of a bottle that used to contain Dichloromethane!? – Philipp Nov 4 '15 at 23:18
• To extend Philipp’s comment: Why on earth would you want to drink anything out of any bottle that used to contain any chemical?!? – Jan Nov 4 '15 at 23:34
• No. Don't do that. – Todd Minehardt Nov 4 '15 at 23:41
• @Jan I regularly drink out of my bottle that used to contain various water-soluble organic compounds. ^^ – orthocresol Nov 4 '15 at 23:50
• @orthocresol Is that a coke bottle? xD I should have specified ‘a chemical not sold for food or drink’. – Jan Nov 5 '15 at 0:26

2 Answers

Safety regulations in every lab I have heard of strictly disallow mixing of containers of any sort that contain, have contained or will contain chemicals with containers of any sort that contain, have contained or will contain food, beverages or anything else intended for human consumption. You should never drink out of a bottle that had contained chemicals, you should never store food or drinks and chemicals together and you should not consume anything where there are chemicals. Your question has a premise that should never happen due to safety regulations.

With that gotten out of the way the answer is quick and dirty: It’s not the dichloromethane that is your prime point of concern. Dichloromethane boils at $40~\mathrm{^\circ C}$ and if you keep a bottle that contained it open and lying down overnight at room temperature, there are no traces of dichloromethane in harmful concentrations left. But unless you really go out of your way to buy $99.999~\%$ purity dichloromethane, it will contain impurities which generally do not evaporate as easily, i.e. which will stay in the bottle. Since no bottle of dichloromethane is designed for drinking out of it, there are no safety tests performed with these impurities or additives and thus you cannot assume it to be harmless even if dichloromethane is gone.

You should not read this answer to say that bottles of highest-purity dichloromethane be safe to drink out of. Never mix food or beverages and chemicals. Never, ever!

• Amen. Such recklessness is just asking for trouble. – MaxW Nov 5 '15 at 0:44
• So if I had a glass bottle containing >= 99.5% Dichloromethane with amylene as a stabilizer and left out overnight is that safe? The bottle was used in a chemistry department so it is high quality, I would assume. Made from the company Sigma-Aldrich. – Carl Thon Nov 6 '15 at 2:20
• @CarlThon Really?!?! I would politely suggest rereading the post you're commenting on. It repeatedly states that this is a terrible idea. – Jason Patterson Nov 6 '15 at 3:25
• But what if I reeeeeeeally want to?! – SendersReagent Mar 7 '16 at 1:27
• @KalleMP "Does not kill on sight..." Are you for real? Cancer isn't usually an instantaneous death. Dimethyl mercury doesn't kill on sight either. – long Mar 7 '16 at 3:37

There are chemicals that kill and some that don't, learn to differentiate and how to read MSDSs.

Try not to mix random chemical bottles with food containers for a lot of reasons, mostly because it might kill someone (you) due to compounded mistakes.

As for this scenario I would say sure.

A typical residue on evaporation for this type of product is <0.0005% that is 5 parts per million. If you have an empty 1000ml bottle you might have 2ml of remaining product. If you let the left over product in your empty bottle evaporate (bottle mouth down is better due to drainage and density of vapour) you would have 0.000005 x 2 = 0.000010g or 10ug or residue left. If you somehow were to dissolve in water and ingest all the residue and it was very toxic you would be getting 10ug total dose that is made of all the stuff that is non-volatile.

In any event the 2ml (near 2700mg) of product left in an empty bottle would be enough to kill half of a population of four 500g rats if NOT evaporated. By simple (not accurate) extrapolation a 70kg adult would need to drink 100g (75ml) of product to have a 50% chance of dying, instead we are talking about the residue from 2ml (2.7g) product with all the poisonous stuff gone.

You probably don't even need to rinse the bottle, though that is what I would do (using clean acetone if I was feeling paranoid, our bodies create acetone and know how to metabolise it in small quantities so don't fret) both solvents will evaporate to dryness (and be clean for almost any use), what is left may be less toxic than the residue from dish-washing liquid.

Also note it is used in some extraction processes in the food industry an produced in some way during the chlorination of municipal recycled drinking water. It has been linked with lab rat cancer when administered in significant doses but not in humans working with it over long periods.

Please note that some chemicals are not this easy to avoid and may cause problems down the line even with low doses. I believe sugar and prescription drugs are a bigger concern than Dichloromethane residue.

Please down vote only if you have read the linked documents and have made an informed comment about Dichloromethane evaporation residue toxicity so people know where I have made errors, I will happily correct any brought to my attention.

EDIT:
Hmm, down votes without useful reasons. If you look up the toxic doses for caffeine, ethyl alcohol, nicotine, dish washing liquid, dishwasher tablets, quinine (tonic water), cream of tartar, acetic acid and too many other 'acceptable' chemicals then you may find they are worse than dichloromethane and don't evaporate as well.

What gives, did you people not actually read this answer before down voting?

Is fear mongering so much fun that you have to remove your own judgement from your own actions. One day you may actually need to decide which of two chemical bottles you need to carry water across the desert to save your life, are you going to pick the right one or are you going to say, yuk, chemicals and walk to your death from dehydration.

• "The bottle was used in a chemistry department so it is high quality, I would assume." I don't those aren't the words of someone who knows the minor contaminants of what they're using. – SendersReagent Mar 7 '16 at 1:34
• And at the end of the day, someone needs to put away some dichloromethane and stumbles across your bottle … Sorry, $-1$ for unsafe working. – Jan Mar 20 '16 at 20:08
• I feel the need to explain myself, since a) there was only a single downvote and b) it was me. I will agree fully that most of the evidence you gave makes drinking out of a well-vented DCM bottle rather safe (and so my lab experience would say). But out of general safety considerations especially when considering that part of the audience is chemically uneducated folk, I cannot approve of any answer that does not stress the safety aspect much much more. Your answer reads far too much in the vein of ‘yeah, go ahead.’ – Jan Apr 19 '16 at 19:23
• You can't upvote your own answer. – orthocresol Apr 19 '16 at 19:39
• I can see vote counts, and believe me: There is exactly one vote (down) on your question (my own). Also, what ortho said, you cannot vote on your own answer neither up nor down. – Jan Apr 19 '16 at 19:41