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### Problem for UA Workshop 1

Posted: Wed Oct 28, 2020 9:43 am
Hello.

I've had a bit of trouble balancing this one chemical equation:

$NaHCO_3 + C_6H_8O_7\rightarrow Na_3C_6H_5O_7+H_2O+CO_2$

Can anyone help me?

Also does anyone have tips about how to balance equations like this? I don't want to spend too much time on these questions on the midterm (I either take a really long time or can't figure these out).

### Re: Problem for UA Workshop 1

Posted: Wed Oct 28, 2020 10:47 am
The way to balance this equation is:

$3NaHCO_{3}+C_{6}H_{8}O_{7}\rightarrow Na_{3}C_{6}H_{5}O_{7} + 3H_{2}O + 3 CO_{2}$

I usually approach these problems by balancing any elements that are not hydrogen or oxygen first. In this case I began with Na. After balancing the Na, I balanced the C, and then the H and O. It may also help to make a table with the number of reactant of each element on one side, the element name in the middle, and the the number of product on the other side. This way you can keep track of the balancing you have already done and how much you have left to do.

Hope this helps!

### Re: Problem for UA Workshop 1

Posted: Sun Nov 01, 2020 11:01 am
Stuti explained it very well, but just to add on another piece of advice: I typically leave the molecules with fewer elements alone until close to the end, meaning I try to accommodate for the larger molecules first. This is because it's harder to manipulate the number of elements for the larger molecules later because you are so limited in what you can change. However, you can easily change the numbers for the smaller molecules later. This mainly applies to reactions that have a reactant or product with the same element (like O2), but I also use it for reactions that have CO2 or H2O like yours has.

I hope this helps, and feel free to ask for more clarification if this wasn't clear :)