Denatured Alcohol Uses

antique maple bar stool image by James Phelps from

Denatured alcohol is a form of ethanol that has had toxic chemicals added to it, making it unsafe for consumption. Denatured alcohol is used as a household paint remover and solvent, according to the U.S. Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau. You can purchase denatured alcohol at hardware stores and any stores that carry painting supplies.

Kill Mildew

You can use denatured alcohol to remove mildew from leather surfaces, according to "Good Housekeeping" magazine. Combine equal parts denatured alcohol and water, and apply the mixture to mildewed leather using a cotton ball. Don't use denatured alcohol on suede or leather that has been dyed.

Cleaning Wood

"Real Simple" magazine suggests using denatured alcohol to clean dirt and debris from wood furniture. You can also use denatured alcohol to remove paint and fingernail polish from wood. Wet a rag with denatured alcohol, and rub it on your wood furniture to remove unwanted paint. Don't rub too hard or for too long to avoid removing the wood's finish. Martha Stewart recommends using denatured alcohol to clean and restore antique furniture. Use a rag doused with denatured alcohol to remove old dirt from the wood's surface.

Dissolve Glue

You can remove glue from wood surfaces using denatured alcohol, according to "Real Simple" magazine. If after repairing wood furniture you have excess glue visible, use a rag soaked in denatured alcohol to remove the glue while it is still wet.

Remove Wax

If you want to refinish wood furniture, you'll need to remove any wax coatings before you can add new stain or paint. Remove the wax finish easily by rubbing the piece of furniture all over with a rag soaked in denatured alcohol.

Clean Red Wine Stains

Spilled red wine can quickly stain clothing, upholstery and carpet. Martha Stewart recommends removing a red wine stain by soaking the stained area in denatured alcohol. After applying the alcohol, flush the area with white vinegar to remove all residual red wine. This stain treatment is even safe on delicate fabrics.