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Butyl Carbitol

General Description

  • Synonyms: 2-(2-Butoxyethoxy)ethanol; Butoxydiethylene glycol; Butoxydiglycol; Diethylene glycol monobutyl ether; Diethylene glycol n-butyl ether; Dowanol DB
  • OSHA IMIS Code Number: 0471
  • Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS) Registry Number: 112-34-5
  • NIOSH Registry of Toxic Effects of Chemical Substances (RTECS) Identification Number: KJ9100000
  • Physical and Chemical Properties
    • physical description: Colorless liquid
    • molecular formula: C8H18O3
    • molecular weight: 162.2
    • boiling point: 230.4°C
    • flash point: 78°C

Exposure Limits and Health Effects

Exposure Limit Limit Values HE Codes Health Factors and Target Organs

OSHA Permissible Exposure Limit (PEL)

Not established

 

 

National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Recommended Exposure Limit (REL)

Not established

 

 

American Conference of Governmental Hygienists (ACGIH) Threshold Limit Value (TLV)

Not established*

 

 

CAL/OSHA PEL

Not established

 

 

* In the ACGIH 2012 Notice of Intended Changes, ACGIH proposed the following limit value: 10 ppm TWA (inhalable fraction and vapor); basis: hematologic, liver, and kidney effects

National Toxicology Program (NTP) carcinogenic classification: Not listed

International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) carcinogenic classification: Not listed

U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) carcinogenic classification: Not listed

EPA Inhalation Reference Concentration (RfC): Not established

Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) Inhalation Minimal Risk Level (MRL): Not established

NIOSH Immediately Dangerous to Life or Health (IDLH) concentration: Not established

Notes on Other Potential Health Effects and Hazards

  1. Butyl carbitol is combustible and can form explosive vapor/air mixtures at temperatures above 78°C (NIOSH/IPCS 2004).
  2. Butyl carbitol is moderately irritating and injurious to the eyes but not appreciably irritating to the skin (Bingham et al. 2001).
  3. Butyl carbitol may produce skin lesions and can be absorbed through the skin (Korinth et al. 2003).
  4. Measurement of the metabolite 2-(2-butoxyethoxy)acetic acid in human urine has been used for biomonitoring the exposure of floor lacquerers to butyl carbitol. An 8-hr exposure to 0.05 ±0.03 ppm butyl carbitol resulted in a urinary metabolite concentration of 9.2 ±7.4 mmol/mol creatinine (Laitinen and Pulkkinen 2005).
  5. Rare cases of allergic contact dermatitis have been reported for individuals exposed to butyl carbinol in printing inks, water-based paints, and disinfectants (Berlin et al. 1995; Dawson et al. 1989; Shliemann-Willers et al. 2000).

Literature Basis

  • Berlin, K., Johanson, G. and Lindberg, M.: Hypersensitivity to 2-(2-butoxyethoxy)ethanol. Contact Dermatitis 32(1): 54, 1995.
  • Bingham, E., Cohrssen, B., and Powell, C.H.: Patty's Toxicology Volumes 1-9 5th ed. John Wiley & Sons. New York, NY, p. V7 203, 2001.
  • Dawson, T.A.J., Black, R.J., Strang, W.C., Millership, J.S., and Davies, I.A.I.: Delayed and immediate hypersensitivity to carbitols. Contact Dermatitis 21(1): 52-53, 1989.
  • NIOSH/IPCS: International Chemical Safety Card - Diethylene Glycol Monobutyl Ether. April 19, 2004.
  • Korinth, G., Goen, T., Lakemeyer, M., Broding, H.C., and Drexler, H.: Skin strain and its influence on systemic exposure to a glycol ether in offset printing workers. Contact Dermatitis 49(5):248-54, November 2003.
  • Laitinen, J. and Pulkkinen, J.: Biomonitoring of 2-(2-alkoxyethoxy)ethanols by analysing urinary 2-(2-alkoxyethoxy)acetic acids. Toxicol. Lett. 156(1): 117-126, 2005.
  • OSHA: Sampling and Analytical Methods - Butyl Carbitol. February 1993.
  • Schliemann-Willers, S., Bauer, A., and Elsner, P.: Occupational contact dermatitis from diethylene glycol monobutyl ether in a podiatrist. Contact Dermatitis 43(4): 225, 2000.

Date Last Revised: 9/6/2012

Monitoring Methods used by OSHA

Laboratory Sampling/Analytical Method:
  • Charcoal Tubes (100/50 mg sections; 20/40 mesh)
  • maximum volume: < 10 Liters
  • maximum flow rate: < 0.2 L/min
  • current analytical method: Gas Chromatography; GC/FID
  • analytical solvent: (95:5) Methylene Chloride: Methanol
  • method reference: OSHA Analytical Method (OSHA PV2095)
  • method classification: Partially Validated

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