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What do all Acids have in Common?

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The substance found around us whether it be food items, medicines, fertilizers, etc are categorized into three groups acids, bases, and salts. The given article deals with the study of common properties all the acids have. Before jumping into the discussion, one must know about acids and bases so a brief explanation is given with their uses.

What are Acids?

Acids are substances that release positive hydrogen ions(H+) when dissolved in water. Generally, acids have a sour taste and can be detected with the litmus paper test as it changes blue litmus into the red. Acids are electrolytes and good conductors of electricity.

Some of the uses of different acids are given below:

  • Hydrochloric acid is used to remove rust from metals.
  • Sulphuric acid is used in automobile batteries, fertilizers, paints, plastics, and dyes.
  • Nitric acid is used in fertilizers, plastics, photographic films, explosives, and dyes.
  • Acetic acid is used in food supplements as raw material and used as a solvent.
  • Citric acid is used as a preservative for food and as a flavouring agent.

What are Bases?

Bases are substances that release hydroxide ions (OH-) when dissolved in water. Generally, bases have a bitter taste and change red litmus paper into the blue. The base can also conduct electricity but they are not as good conductors as acid. The pH value of bases is above 7. They are weak dehydrating agents.  

Some of the uses of different bases are given below:

  • Sodium hydroxide is used in the manufacture of paper soaps and detergents.
  • Potassium hydroxide is used in the manufacturing of soaps and batteries.
  • Calcium hydroxide is used in the manufacture of mortar and plaster.
  • Magnesium hydroxide is used as an antacid to neutralize acidity in the stomach.
  • Ammonium hydroxide is used as a cleansing agent and manufacture of fertilizers.

What do all Acids have in common?

All acids release ions due to which they are electrolytic in nature and conduct electricity. All acids turn blue litmus paper into red during the indication process. Acids have a pH value of less than 7. Most of the acids have an acidic or sour taste. They are good dehydrating agents. Acids remain colourless when placed in phenolphthalein (a colourless indicator). Acids remain colourless when placed in phenolphthalein (a colourless indicator).

Following are some important reactions that are shown by both acids and bases as:

  • All acids release hydrogen (H+) ions on dissolving in water.

For example,

HCl ⇢ H+ + Cl

  • On reacting with metal all acids produce hydrogen gas.

Metal + Acid ⇢ Ionic compound + Hydrogen gas

For example, With zinc as:

Zn + H2SO4 (sol) ⇢ ZnSO4 (sol) + H2 (g)

With aluminium as:

2Al + 3H2SO4 ⇢ Al2(SO4)3+ 3H2 (g)

  • Acids react with compounds like carbonate and bicarbonate to produce CO2.

With CO3 as:

CaCO3 + 2HNO3  ⇢  Ca(NO3)2 + CO2 (g) + H2O

With HCO3 as:

NaHCO3 + HCl ⇢ NaCl + CO2 (g) +H2O

Acids react with bases to form salt and water. The reaction is called the neutralization reaction.

Acid +Base ⇢ Salt +Water

For example,

HCl + NaOH ⇢ NaCl + H2O

Sample Question

Question 1: Explain how acid is essential for the human body functioning?


The ascorbic acid also known as vitamin Chelps to fight colds and keep the immunity strong.

Hydrochloric acid is released by the stomach to help digest food.

Question 2: Which acid is the component Of ATP?


Phosphoric acid is the component of ATP.

Question 3: What is the pH value of acid and base?


The pH value of acid is less than 7 and that of the base is more than 7.

Question 4: What are noble metals?


Some metals like  Gold, Silver, Platinum, Mercury which do not produce hydrogen gas while reacting with acids are known as noble metals.

Question 5: How do you detect acids and bases in a solution?


Acid and base can be identified by litmus paper taste as acid changes blue litmus paper into red and bases change red litmus into blue.

Question 6: Which acid is responsible for protein synthesis in the body?


Amino acid is required for protein synthesis which helps in the growth and repairing of body tissues.

Question 7: Name some acids found in our food items?


Some acids like Lactic acid( milk), citric acid (lemon), Tartaric Acid (tamarind) are found in our food items.

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Last Updated : 22 Nov, 2022
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