Residential Marijuana Hash Oil Extraction Information

What are the risks?

The manufacture of marijuana concentrate (hash oil) is an increasing trend in residential occupancies. There are several solvents that can be used during the extraction process, including acetone, butane, carbon dioxide (CO2), hexane and rubbing alcohol. However, butane hash oil extraction has become an increasingly popular method of producing marijuana concentrate. Butane, as well as other flammable and combustible solvents, is very volatile and explosive.

Another dangerous step in this process may include what is referenced as winterization.  The purpose of winterization is to purify the mixture by removing inactive ingredients like fats, lipids, waxes and excess plant material. Winterization is the process of dissolving a butane honey oil mixture in 190 proof polar ethanol and freezing for approximately 48 hours. During the winterization process, butane vapors can accumulate in the freezer and can be ignited by static electricity, a spark from a compressor, a fan motor, or simply opening the door to turn on the light. Additional methods of extraction may include the use of flammable liquids by soaking plant material for a certain amount of time, usually in acetone or an alcohol based solvent.

What is the difference between "Flammable" and "Combustible" liquids?

The National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) has a system for categorizing liquid as being flammable or combustible. The classification system is based primarily on the flash point of the liquid; that is, the minimum temperature at which sufficient vapor is given off the liquid to form an ignitable mixture with air.

What is the Colorado State law on the use of butane extraction?

It is illegal to make marijuana hash oil or concentrates using substances like butane, propane, ether or alcohol. Visit https://www.colorado.gov/marijuana for complete Colorado State laws on marijuana and butane extraction.

What does the Colorado Springs Fire Department consider as less hazardous extraction methods?

  • Dry Sieve
  • Rubbing
  • Parchment Paper
  • Vegetable Oils
  • Olive Oil
  • Dry Ice
  • Butter