Salts and Solutions

Identify a range of salts which form acidic, basic or neutral solutions and explain their acidic, neutral or basic nature


  • Acidic salts: Salts that dissolve in water to form solutions with a pH less than 7.
    • Acidic salts formed form the reaction between a strong acid and a weak base.
    • Ammonium chloride is an example of an acidic salt, and can be formed by the reaction between hydrochloric acid (a strong acid) and ammonia (a weak base):
    • Acidic salts contain an ion that is a weak acid, which can hydrolyse to produce hydronium ions and lower the pH of the water, such as in the case of the ammonium ion in ammonium chloride:
  • Basic salts: Salts that dissolve in water to form solutions with a pH greater than 7.
    • Basic salts formed from a reaction between a strong base and a weak acid.
    • Sodium acetate is an example of a basic salt, and can be formed by the reaction between acetic acid (a weak acid) and sodium hydroxide (a strong base):
    • Basic salts contain an ion that is a weak base, which can hydrolyse to produce hydroxide ions and thus raise the pH of the water, such as in the case of the acetate ion in sodium acetate:
  • Neutral salts: Salts that dissolve in water to form solutions that have a pH close to 7.
    • Some neutral salts are formed from the neutralisation of a strong acid and a strong base, while a smaller amount are formed from the neutralisation of a weak acid and a weak base.
    • Sodium chloride is an example of a neutral salt, and can be formed by the reaction between hydrochloric acid (a strong acid) and sodium hydroxide (a strong base):

  • A neutral salt does not further react with water.

Easychem - Salts and Solutions


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