Can't find denatured alcohol in Canada, best alternative?

Hello, I can’t seem to find denatured alcohol in Canada (paint store, home depot, 3 different drug store chains), what is the best alternative?
Acquiring supplies to go wax based (squirt) for chain lube.
Thank you for any feedback and suggestions.

Or a paint store. Ok…I see you already tried that.

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OK, thanks, so Methyl Hydrate is the best alternative?
This is available at home depot, lowes, CAN tire, paint stores, … much easier to locate.
Thank you

No idea and I sure wouldn’t take my advice on chemistry! :warning:

Do some research.

Seems like …
denatured alcohol = methylated spirits (not the same as methyl hydrate) = wood spirit

still having a hard time finding somewhere that sells this stuff in the Vancouver area. Will keep looking and update thread if I have any luck.

Denatured alcohol is just to be high proof alcohol/ethanol. Denatured is just code to avoid sin taxes - it’s cut with methanol, which will make you sick. You might see it sold as camping or catering fuel because it burns very cleanly.

Are you just looking for something to degrease the chain or why do you need it for squirt?

I will be moving to wax for my chain so from what I’ve read I will first degrease (with simple green) may current chain , next do multiple baths with mineral spirits until there is no residue left in mineral spirits and is totally clear , then follow this with bath in Denatured alcohol. I believe the Denatured alcoho is to be remove any final residue as well as water and speed drying, before apply squirt or dipping in crockpot if doing hot wax.
Sound correct?

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Yeah. The “denatured alcohol” there is just a light organic solvent.

Denatured alcohol is industrial-use ethanol. Any reasonably pure ethanol is a direct substitute. Something like methanol or isopropanol (isopropyl alcohol) is pretty similar.

Any other light organic solvent should work fine, like mineral spirits, kerosene, etc. These tend to go by a lot of different regional names.

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According to Josh Poertner, Acetone works well.

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Acetone works good, can confirm. Last chain i was lazy and just did dishsoap in hot water after degreaser(had some engine bay cleaner in garage). Worked just as well. Honestly i wouldn’t overcomplicate chain degreasing. Just as long as it is something relatively good as paint thinner or any automotive degreaser it would do the trick. Millions of choices, like brake cleaner for example, designed to degrease rotors. Stinks af, can etch paint, similar to acetone. Pretty much anything in CT that says degreaser would do.

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Yeah, I just use hot water and dishwashing liquid before switching to squirt. If using a new chain, I run it until the factory grease has come off, then use bike degeaser, then hot soapy water. Works fine, just don’t let a de-greased, wet chain sit around, or it will get rusty. Dry it a bit and then put squirt on.

We went camping in Canada once, with a cooker that used meths as fuel…couldn’t get any. Still not sure if it doesn’t exist, or just has another name. After setting fire to our cooker with a different fuel type and nearly getting pulled by the mounties, it was cold food only for the rest of the trip.

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Denatured alcohol is also called “methylated spirits” same thing…go to Canadian tire.

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Denatured alcohol is also called “methylated spirits”, which means ethanol+poison (often methanol) to make it non-drinkable. So it’s the same thing.


Unfortunately methylated spirits is not listed as a available product on the Canadian Tire website.

From the Squirt literature:

We advise degreasing a new, out of the box, chain completely. For cleaning gunked up
chain from previous oil, other dry lubes or new chain grease, soak in undiluted Squirt
Biodegradable Bike Cleaner Concentrate for 30 minutes and use firm brush to
accelerate the dissolving action. After degreasing it is imperative to clean off all
degreaser thoroughly, and rinse properly a few times.

Squirt Biodegradable Bike Cleaner Concentrate Composition:

Bit expensive, but just order the cleaner concentrate through

I just tried the 3 mineral spirits 1 alcohol bottle shake method and my god my chain went from a disgrace to the cleanest chain I have ever seen in my entire life. I cannot believe I’ve been riding this long and never knew of this method until I heard Josh Portner talk of it in a podcast.

Hi email me on

I’ve waxed my chain lots. I love it! You can degrease a chain with kerosene or Mineral Spirits (which is definitely at Canadian Tire if you can’t find methylated spirits. I also boil my chain with a bit of degreaser in an old pot.

I go old school and use paraffin wax mixed with some paraffin lamp oil. Works brilliantly and feels like I am gliding on air! Don’t start a fire! :hot_face:

I’ve been using just paraffin wax, but I’ve seen formulations to add up to 50% lamp oil. Curious if you’ve tried wax-only and could compare/contrast it? I’d tempted to try it, but not sure there’s a reason.