Balancing Reactions: Acid vs Base

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Alice Chang 2H
Posts: 101
Joined: Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:18 am

Balancing Reactions: Acid vs Base

Postby Alice Chang 2H » Sun Feb 23, 2020 7:49 pm

Is there any difference in the process to balance a reaction when it's either acidic or basic?

chari_maya 3B
Posts: 108
Joined: Sat Sep 07, 2019 12:18 am

Re: Balancing Reactions: Acid vs Base

Postby chari_maya 3B » Sun Feb 23, 2020 8:00 pm

There is a difference: In acidic, balance O with H2O and H with H+, in basic it is more complicated but explained in Toolbox 6.K1

TarynD_1I
Posts: 100
Joined: Sat Aug 24, 2019 12:17 am

Re: Balancing Reactions: Acid vs Base

Postby TarynD_1I » Sun Feb 23, 2020 8:05 pm

Balancing acidic and alkaline reactions are mostly the same, but balancing alkaline reactions have an additional step. in a basic reaction, after balancing the reaction with protons (H+), you have to also balance out the protons with OH-.

Mulin_Li_2J
Posts: 105
Joined: Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:16 am

Re: Balancing Reactions: Acid vs Base

Postby Mulin_Li_2J » Sun Feb 23, 2020 9:56 pm

In acidic solution, you would expect high concentration of hydronium ions and thus use H+ to balance hydrogen on both sides of the equation.

In basic solution, you would expect high concentration of hydroxide ions and thus use OH- to balance hydrogen.

A quick way to balance redox reaction in basic solution is to attain the final equation assuming acidic solution first and then add OH- on both sides to balance off H+.
Example:
A + 2H+ = B + C (assume acidic solution first)
|
A + 2H+ + 2OH- = B + C + 2OH- (add OH- on both sides to balance off H+)
|
A + 2H2O = B + C + 2OH- (H+ + OH- = H2O and subtract repetitive reactants and products off the equation)


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