Propylene Glycol Formulation Specifications

Propylene glycol can be used instead of Spectra SC-1 storage chemical for storage in any climate, and treatment is effective for one year.

Propylene glycol is a food-grade antifreeze used to winterize RV's, boats, and cabins. Do not use ethylene glycol automotive antifreeze, which is toxic and will damage the system. Be advised that many off the shelf potable water antifreeze propylene glycol formulations contain ethyl alcohol as an additive, which is harmful and will attack the plastics used in the system.

The propylene glycol formulations sold in marine and RV stores are usually diluted with water. The water remaining in the watermaker before the storage procedure will further dilute the antifreeze, reducing the microbial protection and increasing the temperature at which the mixture will freeze.

Antifreeze labeled "Minus Fifty" is a 25% solution and will begin to form an icy slush at about +15Degrees F (-10C) and will only provide burst protection to about Zero F (-18C). After a further 50% percent dilution by water remaining in the watermaker, "Minus Fifty" antifreeze will only protect from bursting down to about +25F (-4C). Therefore, if low temperature freezing protection is required a 60% or stronger antifreeze should be used. 60% solutions are labeled "Minus 100" and will provide burst protection to -15F (-27C) even after a fifty percent dilution with residual water. "Minus 200" formulations are pure propylene glycol.

Complete microbial protection requires a 25% solution of propylene glycol, so care must be taken that the solution remaining in the watermaker during long term storage is at least 25%, even if freeze protection is not required. 

For these reasons Spectra recommends that all pickling be carried out with a 60% or greater concentration.