Is sodium chloride a base or an acid?
Sodium chloride, which is obtained by neutralization of hydrochloric acid and sodium hydroxide, is a neutral salt. Neutralization of any strong acid with a strong base always gives a neutral salt. In general, however, salts may be acidic, basic or neutral. Let's investigate the pH of salts dissolved in water.
Compare HCl, NaOH, and NaCl: HCl is a stronger acid than water. NaCl is a weaker base than NaOH. Strong acids react with strong bases to form weaker acids and bases. NH3 is a weak base, but its conjugate acid, NH4Cl, is a strong acid.
- The chemical compound hydrochloric acid is the aqueous (water-based) solution of hydrogen chloride gas (HCl). It is a strong acid, the major component of gastric acid and of wide industrial use. Hydrochloric acid must be handled with appropriate safety precautions because it is a highly corrosive liquid.
- Table salt, which is sodium chloride (NaCl), is not an acid or a base, but is a salt, as it is formed by the replacement of the H+ ion in Hydrochloric acid by sodium ion. But it will probably turn green as salts are usually neutral.
- The ions from KCl derive from a strong acid (HCl) and a strong base (KOH). Therefore, neither ion will affect the acidity of the solution, so KCl is a neutral salt. Therefore the solution will be basic, and KNO 2 is a basic salt.
Thus, salts consisting of these ions are neutral salts. For example: NaCl, KNO3, CaBr2, CsClO4 are neutral salts. When weak acids and bases react, the relative strength of the conjugated acid-base pair in the salt determines the pH of its solutions. The salt, or its solution, so formed can be acidic, neutral or basic.
- This is why NaCl is a neutral salt. In General: Salts containing halides (except F-) and an alkaline metal (except Be2+) will dissociate into spectator ions. Salts that are from strong bases and weak acids do hydrolyze, which gives it a pH greater than 7.
- The salts produced from combining strong acids and bases (NaCl, NaNO3, Na2SO4, KCl, KNO3, K2SO4) are neutral salts. If these neutral salts are dissolved in water, the solution pH is close to 7.0. Strong acids react with weak bases, such as ammonia (ammonium hydroxide).
- To determine whether a substance is an acid or a base, count the hydrogens on each substance before and after the reaction. If the number of hydrogens has decreased that substance is the acid (donates hydrogen ions). If the number of hydrogens has increased that substance is the base (accepts hydrogen ions).
Na and Cl can ionize, and produce Na+ and Cl- ions in water… which is the hallmark of salt behavior. But it is not an acid or a base. Some salts can be acidic or basic but NaCl is neither. In case of ph nacl has neutral ph due to neutralization of strong acid hcl and strong alkali naoh.
- There is a general rule in chemistry as to how salts affect solution pH. Sodium chloride is table salt and when it is added to water it breaks down into ions of sodium and chloride. Neither of them reacts to water so adding it to water will only change the volume, not the pH.
- Some common bases as sodium hydroxide, ammonia and more
Base Normality pH Sodium carbonate (washing soda) 0.1 N 11.6 Sodium hydroxide (caustic soda) N 14.0 Sodium hydroxide 0.1 N 13.0 Sodium hydroxide 0.01 N 12.0
- Sodium chloride, which is obtained by neutralization of hydrochloric acid and sodium hydroxide, is a neutral salt. Neutralization of any strong acid with a strong base always gives a neutral salt. In general, however, salts may be acidic, basic or neutral. Let's investigate the pH of salts dissolved in water.
Updated: 2nd October 2019