A colourless clear, highly volatile liquid with a pungently sweet odour. Acetone has a rapid rate of evaporation, high solvency and a low boiling point. Acetone is miscible with water, aromatic and aliphatic hydrocarbon solvents and most organic solvents. It has excellent solvency properties for many vegetable and animal fats and oils, most natural and synthetic resins and the common plasticizers.

Acetone Common Uses

  • Widely Used Cleanup Solvent for lacquers, varnishes, epoxies, glues, fibreglass & adhesives. As a heavy-duty degreaser, it is useful in the preparation of metal prior to painting. A clean-up solvent in the manufacture of fibreglass boats, campers, automotive panelling. Can remove superglue before hardening.
  • Used by drycleaners in “spotting” solutions. Used in the compounding of fast drying printing inks.
  • Paint and Resins: Thinner for polyester resins, fibreglass resin, vinyl, adhesives and some paints. A component of polyurethane and epoxy resins. Sold by fibreglass suppliers.
  • Adhesives: Acetone’s high solvency for a range of adhesive raw materials, and fast evaporation enables bonds to develop strength quickly at relatively low cost. Acetone is used as a co-solvent in neoprene-based contact cements and nitrocellulose and acrylic cements. Acetone is a useful clean up solvent for polyurethane adhesives.
  • Cosmetics: Active ingredient in Acetone based nail polish and nail polish remover formulations.
  • Electronics Industry: Used as a cleaning dewatering solvent for electronic components in between manufacturing steps.

Industrial applications include:

  • Paint and Resin Manufacture: Acetone is a solvent for nitrocellulose, celluloid, cellulose acetate and cellulose ethers and reduces the viscosity of lacquer solutions based on these compounds. Acetone is used in quick-drying lacquers because of its high volatility. High solids content coatings formulations are made using acetone.
  • Pharmaceuticals: Acetone is used as a solvent and dewatering agent in the manufacture of pharmaceuticals.
  • Acetylene Gas Cylinders: Acetylene is an important industrial gas, but cannot be compressed sufficiently for storage in portable cylinders without risk of explosive detonation. Due to Acetones ability to dissolve large quantities of acetylene gas (about 300 times its own volume), it is used in gas cylinders with the acetone being supported on an absorptive clay. As the acetylene gas is drawn off, some acetone vapour escapes with it and so the cylinders need to have the acetone replenished on a regular basis. .


Note we are also bulk Acetone suppliers in New Zealand.
Industrial customers who buy Acetone are advised to download and read the Material Safety Data Sheet below.
Acetone sold in: 1 Litre, 4 Litre, 20 Litre and 200 Litre Drums.