Experimenting with Baking Soda & Vinegar

I don’t know how many times the kids and I have done experiments with baking soda and vinegar. But I’ve always questioned how much to use of each… I’ve always just guessed and it turned out however it turned out.

It’s never been a problem with our results and the boys have always had a good time with our experiments.

But I thought it was time to figure it out.

What ratio of vinegar to baking soda is best?

 

I set up an experiment for Henry and I to discover how to get the best baking soda and vinegar results.

I set up 3 glasses [clear]. I had Henry write the numbers 1-2-3 each on a piece of paper.

I poured vinegar in each glass tablespoons in the corresponding number. 1 tablespoon, 2 tablespoons and 3 tablespoons of vinegar.

 

Experimenting with Baking Soda & Vinegar

Henry measured one tablespoon of baking soda and dumped it into the first glass and observed what happened.

We kept doing this [always with one tablespoon of baking soda] through all three glasses and found that the fizzing got bigger and better with each additional tablespoon of  vinegar.

We thought another round of testing should be done with even more vinegar.

So another setup was done for 4-5-6 tablespoons of vinegar.

We found once again that the fizzing was quite a bit bigger and better with 6 tablespoons.

Experimenting with Baking Soda & Vinegar

Yet another round of testing needed to be done. This time I skipped numbers so we could really see the difference. I set it up as 3-6-12 tablespoons of vinegar!

Whoa! 12 tablespoons of vinegar to 1 tablespoon of baking soda overflowed our glasses!

Experimenting with Baking Soda & Vinegar

I can’t help but wonder if we were to try it with even more vinegar what the result would be. But our glass was overflowing the way it was, so that was the end of our experimenting to find out the best ratio.

The next question I had…

Is it better to add baking soda to vinegar? Or vinegar to baking soda?

Experimenting with Baking Soda & Vinegar

So we tested that as well with the best ratio of baking soda and vinegar.

The amount of fizzing was the same for both. However… there is a difference in the time of reaction between the two.

Baking Soda & Vinegar Experiment Results:

 

  • Adding vinegar to baking soda gives you an immediate reaction.
  • Adding baking soda to vinegar, the reaction is delayed, but then fizzes the same amount.
  • More vinegar is better. A 12 to 1 ratio of vinegar to baking soda caused a fizzing explosion!

 

We could have kept going with this all afternoon! Henry was getting a kick out of the experiment and loved watching it overflow the cup.

Henry is 5 years old.

 

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Comments

  1. says

    What great science and what a useful thing to know! We often set off a volcano with baking soda and vinegar and have generally added more powder when it stopped fizzing- your test suggests we should use more vinegar. Thanks for the tip (I think my boys would like to do the research themselves too- just to check!!)

    • says

      Yeah I think vinegar would get more out of it…. but maybe not either if its the second time around… because the soda would be dissolved… I’m not sure! Another thing to test!

  2. savannah bussey says

    Thanks for the great idea for the project. instead i used ballons over the top! But it was a amazing projext!! :)

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