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Chemical Sampling Information (CSI)
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General Description

Synonyms: n-Butane; Butyl hydride; Diethyl; Methylethylmethane

OSHA IMIS Code Number: 0420

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 106-97-8

NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: EJ4200000

Department of Transportation Regulation Number (49 CFR 172.101) and Guide: 1011 115; 1075 115

NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards, n-Butane: chemical description, physical properties, potentially hazardous incompatibilities, and more

Exposure Limits

American Conference of Governmental Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV): See Aliphatic hydrocarbon gases: Alkane [C1 - C4] 1000 ppm TWA (Listed under Butane, All isomers)

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL): 800 ppm, 1900 mg/m3 TWA

Health Factors

Potential Symptoms: Drowsiness, narcosis, asphyxia; cardiac arrhythmia; frostbite from contact with liquid.

Health Effects: Asphyxiant (HE17); Narcosis (HE8); Acute toxicity---sudden death (ventricular fibrillation) (HE4).

Affected Organs: CNS

Notes:

  1. OSHA does not have a PEL for n-butane, which is affirmed as generally recognized as safe as a direct human food ingredient (21 CFR 184.1165).
  2. Gas/air mixtures are explosive.
  3. One case of hepatitis due to occupational inhalation of butane and propane has been reported.
  4. Metabolized in the body to sec-butanol and methyl ethyl ketone.

Literature Basis:

  • NIOSH Pocket Guide to Chemical Hazards: n-Butane.
  • International Chemical Safety Cards (WHO/IPCS/ILO): Butane (liquefied gas).
  • Aydin, Y. and Ozcakar L.: Occupational hepatitis due to chronic inhalation of propane and butane. Int. J. Clin. Pract. 57(6): 546, 2003.
  • Fuke, C., et al.: A fatal case considered to be due to cardiac arrhythmia associated with butane inhalation. Leg. Med. (Tokyo) 4(2): 134-138, 2002.
  • Pohanish, R.P. (editor): Butanes. In, Sittig's Handbook of Toxic and Hazardous Chemicals and Carcinogens, Fourth Ed., Vol. 1. Norwich, NY: Noyes Publications, William Andrew Publishing, 2002, pp. 386-388.
  • Rohrig, T.P.: Sudden death due to butane inhalation. Am. J. Forensic Med. Pathol. 18(3): 299-302, 1997.
  • Tsukamoto, S., Chiba, S., Muto, T., Ishikawa, T. and Shimamura, M.: Study on the metabolism of volatile hydrocarbons in mice-propane, n-butane, and iso-butane. J. Toxicol. Sci. 10(4): 323-332, 1985.

Date Last Revised: 02/17/2004

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Primary Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method (SLC1):

  • sampling media: Two Carbosieve S-III tubes in series (130/65 mg sections, 60/80 mesh)
    analytical solvent: Carbon Disulfide
    maximum volume: 3 Liters
    maximum flow rate: 0.05 L/min
    current analytical method: Gas Chromatography; GC/FID
    method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA PV2010)
    method classification: Partially Validated

On-Site Sampling Techniques/Methods:

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: AUER/MSA
    model/type: Propane-200, MSA P/N 804418, AUER P/N 5086-831
    sampling information: follow manufacturer's instructions
    upper measurement limit: 3800 ppm
    detection limit: approximately 100 ppm
    overall uncertainty: unknown
    method reference: on-site air secondary (manufacturer)

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: Gastec
    model/type: 104
    sampling information: 1 stroke
    upper measurement limit: 1400 ppm
    detection limit: 5 ppm
    overall uncertainty: 16% for 25 to 400 ppm, 8% for 400 to 1400 ppm
    method reference: on-site air secondary (manufacturer)

  • device: Detector Tube
    manufacturer: Matheson-Kitagawa
    model/type: 8014-221SA
    sampling information: 1 stroke
    upper measurement limit: 0.6%
    detection limit: approximately 0.02%
    overall uncertainty: unknown
    method reference: on-site air secondary (manufacturer)

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