Acetone is banned in my country, and I cannot get it.

What substitute could I use?

  • $\begingroup$ To do what with? It depends what you needed the acetone for? To dissolve ABS? Google lists a number of alternatives. $\endgroup$
    – Greenonline
    Commented May 21, 2017 at 0:06

2 Answers 2


The answer really depends on what you are using it for. Is it for dissolving ABS? A quick google search should show you what you want.

The thread, Could you recommend me a suitable alternative to acetone as solvent?, has a good many points that are worth considering:

For example, you may need to consider the Polarity Index

Burdick & Jackson solvents are arranged in order of increasing polarity index, a relative measure of the degree of interaction of the solvent with various polar test solutes.

If you are using it to dissolve a polymer other than ABS, then the family/class of polymer may need to be considered:

Apart from your desired solvent qualities (non-flammability and low boiling point), the choice will be totally dependent on the family/ class which the polymer  belongs. Based on the principal that 'like dissolves like, the attached document will provide you with good ideas on which solvent to use when a particular repeating unit of the polymer is involved.

Butanone is a possibility:

One alternative is butanone (button-2-one) - this is similar to acetone, but has a much higher boiling point. It is often used for alkylations etc. It has a boiling point of 79-80°C compared to 56°C of acetone.

or NMP:

N-methyl-2-pyrrolidone (NMP) can be used. It is a polar aprotic solvent and dissolves many polymers. It has high boiling point ( >200 degree centigrade)  It is soluble in water and easy to dispose which is a great advantage during work up of reactions.

However, some other alternative chemicals are listed here (from Any good alternative to Acetone?:

  • Butyl alcohol
  • methyl isobutyl keytone (MIBK)
  • denatured alcohol
  • MEK (methyl,ethyl,ketone), i.e. Kleen-Strip MEK Alternative
  • Ethyl Acetate

Some branded items, from Alternatives to Acetone:

  • Surfasolve

Surfasolve is a 100 percent biodegradable acetone replacement that removes adhesives, degreases tools and works as a resin solvent. Surfasolve is a non-regulated product.

  • Bio-Solv

Bio-Solv is an acetone replacement that is 100 percent biodegradable. It is not deemed a hazmat, so shipping will not cost you more. This acetone alternative is not listed on California Proposition 65, a law passed in 1986 to keep substances that cause cancer and birth defects out of drinking water. Nevertheless, you want to use Bio-Solv in a well-ventilated area because of an unpleasant odor. It is not, however, a hazardous air pollutant. Bio-Solv is not petroleum based.

  • Replacetone

Replacetone is another acetone alternative. It is nonflammable and nonvolatile. It can be used as an acetone or MEK (methyl ethyl ketone, an industrial solvent) replacement that is biodegradable. Both Replacetone and Bio-Solv are referred to as green acetone.

  • Methyl Acetate

Methyl acetate is offered as an acetone replacement. Manufactured by the Eastman Chemical Company, it is utilized in industrial applications. It is biodegradable, volatile organic compound exempt and non-HAP (hazardous air pollutant)

Important note

However, some of these items may also be banned in your country, so check first. As you do not say which country that you are from, it is not possible to qualify this statement.

It is worth remembering that some of these substances are not as safe as acetone, and the fumes may be more toxic, so they should always be used in well ventilated spaces.

  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Just an aside, butane and methylethylketone (MEK) are the same molecule. If acetone (dimethylketone) is outlawed, then I would guess that MEK is also illegal. $\endgroup$ Commented May 22, 2017 at 15:43

I have used DCM (dichloromethane, or ethylene dichloride) to dissolve ABS (or cold-weld/glue parts together).

From ABS wikipedia page:

ABS polymers are resistant to aqueous acids, alkalis, concentrated hydrochloric and phosphoric acids, alcohols and animal, vegetable and mineral oils, but they are swollen by glacial acetic acid, carbon tetrachloride and aromatic hydrocarbons and are attacked by concentrated sulfuric and nitric acids. They are soluble in esters, ketones, ethylene dichloride and acetone.


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