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usually it's by looking at the electronegativity of each elements. whichever is more electronegative will pull towards itself, and then you draw the vectors accordingly. then add them to see which direction they go in. if they all cancel out, it would be nonpolar, if they don't cancel, it's polar
First, consider the electronegativity differences between the atoms. Then, consider if all of the atoms are the same that are bonding with the central atom. If they are, then they cancel out, therefore a nonpolar molecule with polar bonds. Diatomic molecules pull on each other and are generally nonpolar. Polar molecules are those in which dipole moments do not cancel out. Polar molecules may sometimes also be indicated if the central atom has a lone pair.
It usually depends on the 3d shape and the electronegativity of the atoms that comprise the molecule. if the electronegativities are imbalanced in 3 dimensions, then the molecule is polar. Else, it is nonpolar.
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