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Old 29-11-2022, 14:11   #1
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propylene glycol shortage

I always used propylene glycol antifreeze to winterize the boat (the -50 degree pink stuff). This year though there's a major shortage here in Northern Virginia. Is there a shortage everywhere? Every place is sold out, even the stuff for RVs.

Does anyone know why, and how long this will go on for?

Now there is quite a bit of Glycol/Alcohol antifreeze available, which is supposed to be used for water systems only, since the alcohol can dry out seals in the engine. But - what about a heating/AC system? I always winterize that too. Does anyone know if it is safe for that? I could drain it instead, but then it's a real hassle priming it to get it going again in the Spring.
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Old 29-11-2022, 14:58   #2
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Re: propylene glycol shortage

I'm no fan of using the glycol/alcohol blend in any system. But if it's all that's available...


No shortage of antifreeze for winterizing up here this year, but the stuff has gotten very expensive. Prices have gone up at least 25% each of the last 2 years.
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Old 29-11-2022, 15:04   #3
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Re: propylene glycol shortage

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rohan View Post
I always used propylene glycol antifreeze to winterize the boat (the -50 degree pink stuff). This year though there's a major shortage here in Northern Virginia. Is there a shortage everywhere? Every place is sold out, even the stuff for RVs.

Does anyone know why, and how long this will go on for?

Now there is quite a bit of Glycol/Alcohol antifreeze available, which is supposed to be used for water systems only, since the alcohol can dry out seals in the engine. But - what about a heating/AC system? I always winterize that too. Does anyone know if it is safe for that? I could drain it instead, but then it's a real hassle priming it to get it going again in the Spring.

[30 years as a chem engr in the glycol industry]


You can use automotive glycol anywhere BUT the potable system.
  • AC
  • blackwater (head)
  • engine seawater side
There is NO ecological difference. Look at the SDS and you will see. It is ONLY a difference in toxicity to mammals (humans and pets). In fact, EG is MUCH kinder to neoprene seals than PG, just one of the many reasons PG is not used in cars (it ain't the money).



It's all in here:
Sail Delmarva: A Marine Winterizing, Antifreeze, and Engine Coolant Primer


I'm out of the business now, so I can't say about any shortage.
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Old 29-11-2022, 15:06   #4
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Re: propylene glycol shortage

Plenty on Wal-mart.com for $3.98 a gallon.
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Old 29-11-2022, 16:00   #5
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Re: propylene glycol shortage

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Originally Posted by FPNC View Post
Plenty on Wal-mart.com for $3.98 a gallon.
That's the alcohol kind, not the kind for engines. Propylene glycol sells for a few dollars more.
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