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A liquid mixture of light hydrocarbons obtained from crude Petroleum. Gasoline, also called Naphtha, is the distillation fraction of petroleum that boils between 35-204C (100-400F). Gasoline is used as a motor vehicle fuel, paint thinner, cleaning fluid, and general solvent. Gasoline dissolves grease stains and other fats, oils, resins, bitumen, rubber, and pitch. Additional fractions are often distilled from gasoline and have over the years been given overlapping names:

  • fraction (boiling range) = alternate names
  • volatiles (<40C) =propane, butane, LPG (liquefied petroleum gas), petroleum ether.
  • naphtha, light (35-60C) = petroleum ether, benzine, ligroin, petroleum spirits.
  • hydrocarbon solvents (60-100C) = benzene, toluene, hexanes.
  • ligroin (90-150 C) =benzine, petroleum spirits, VM&P naphtha, heavy naphtha.
  • mineral spirits (150-200C) =paint thinner, white spirits, petroleum spirits, Stoddard solvent.

Synonyms and Related Terms

petrol (Br.); essence (Fr.); motor fuel; naphtha; CAS = 8006-61-9


  • Highly flammable.
  • Toxic by ingestion and inhalation.
  • Sinclair Oil: SDS

Resources and Citations

  • Reed Kay, The Painter's Guide To Studio Methods and Materials, Prentice-Hall, Inc., Englewood Cliffs, NJ, 1983
  • Hermann Kuhn, Conservation and Restoration of Works of Art and Antiquities, Butterworths, London, 1986
  • George Savage, Art and Antique Restorer's Handbook, Rockliff Publishing Corp, London, 1954

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