Is Propylene Glycol Flammable? Discover its Surprising Combustibility

Is Propylene Glycol Flammable?

Many people wonder whether propylene glycol is flammable. In this article, we will explore this question and provide you with the information you need to know. So, let’s dive in!

What is Propylene Glycol?

Propylene glycol is a commonly used chemical compound that belongs to the family of alcohol chemicals. It is a synthetic liquid substance that is odorless, colorless, and tasteless. Due to its versatility, it is used in a wide range of applications such as food and beverage production, skincare products, medicine, and even automobile antifreeze.

Is Propylene Glycol Flammable? Discover its Surprising Combustibility


Flammability of Propylene Glycol

Now, the big question: Is propylene glycol flammable? The answer is both yes and no. Propylene glycol itself is not flammable at normal temperatures and atmospheric pressure. It has a relatively high flashpoint, which means it requires a higher temperature to ignite compared to many other common flammable substances.

However, it is important to note that propylene glycol can still burn under certain conditions. When heated to high temperatures (above 200 degrees Celsius), it can undergo a process called pyrolysis, which can result in the production of flammable gases. These gases can then burn when exposed to an open flame or spark, posing a potential fire hazard.

Usage in Various Industries

Propylene glycol’s low flammability makes it a preferred choice in various industries where flammability is a concern. One of its most significant applications is in the food and beverage industry, where it is commonly used as a food additive and preservative. Due to its non-flammable nature, it is safe to use in manufacturing processes that involve food and beverages without putting consumers at risk.

Additionally, propylene glycol is widely used in skincare and cosmetic products. It acts as a moisturizing agent, keeping the skin hydrated and improving its appearance. The non-flammability of propylene glycol adds an extra layer of safety to these products, ensuring that they can be used without the risk of fire hazards.

Regulations and Safety Measures

To ensure the safe use of propylene glycol, regulatory authorities have set guidelines and safety measures for handling and storage. These guidelines help to minimize any potential risks associated with the handling of flammable substances that may be produced during the pyrolysis process.

If propylene glycol is used in industrial settings, it is essential to follow proper safety protocols and provide adequate ventilation to reduce the chances of flammable gases accumulating in confined spaces. Proper storage, handling, and disposal measures should be taken to prevent accidents and fire hazards.

Is Propylene Glycol Flammable? Discover its Surprising Combustibility


Frequently Asked Questions For Is Propylene Glycol Flammable? Discover Its Surprising Combustibility

Is Propylene Glycol Flammable?

Propylene glycol is non-flammable and does not pose a fire hazard. It is commonly used in fire suppression systems.

Can Propylene Glycol Cause Skin Irritation?

Propylene glycol can cause skin irritation, especially in individuals with sensitive skin. It is important to take proper precautions when handling it.

Does Propylene Glycol Have A Strong Odor?

Propylene glycol has a slightly sweet odor which is generally considered to be mild and not overpowering.

Is Propylene Glycol Safe To Use In Food?

Propylene glycol is generally recognized as safe (GRAS) by the FDA and is approved for use in food, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals.


In conclusion, while propylene glycol itself is not flammable at normal temperatures, it can still pose a fire hazard when exposed to high temperatures. The risk lies in the potential production of flammable gases during the pyrolysis process. However, when used in regulated and controlled environments, such as the food and beverage industry or skincare products, the non-flammability of propylene glycol is a significant advantage, ensuring user safety.

Remember to always follow safety guidelines and precautions to ensure the responsible and safe handling of propylene glycol and any other potentially hazardous substances.

Updated: March 12, 2024 — 2:44 am