Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 174 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [everyday-chemistry]

Applications of chemistry to reagents, reactions and processes of everyday life. Use this tag for question on chemistry in an out-of-laboratory/class context. DO NOT use this tag merely because the question is about simple chemistry.

6
votes
2answers
1k views

Why is tin (II) fluoride more effective in turning apatite into fluorapatite?

In more powerful toothpastes, like Crest Pro-Health, stannous fluoride is used in place of sodium fluoride. According to Wikipedia: Stannous fluoride converts the calcium mineral apatite into ...
25
votes
5answers
835 views

Why are smoke odors persistent in fabrics?

Obviously smoke is very complex, but apparently phenol compounds are the main components of wood smoke that produce the characteristic odor. (One of more significant of these compounds seems to be ...
7
votes
1answer
772 views

Why is bread warm at room temperature?

If I buy a loaf of freshly-made bread and leave it out at room temperature for a day or two, when I reach into the bag the air inside is much warmer than the rest of the room. Why?
7
votes
2answers
9k views

Why does milk flake?

While drinking milk (or better 'while seeing the milk I'm gonna drink') a question came up to my mind: Why does the milk sometimes flake, even if not in contact with some other substances? I guess ...
8
votes
1answer
2k views

Identifying a glass frosting chemical

I have purchased an "unknown" white coloured powder from the market which can frost glass objects. Here are some properties of this powder White in colour When mixed with HCL or water, it results in ...
8
votes
3answers
314 views

Clogged drain, commercial products are ineffective

I have a clogged drain from my shower. Commercial products like Savo or WC Net totally don't work. Is there any chemical substance which can be bought without permission or which can be made easily to ...
1
vote
5answers
1k views

Is crushing an avocado a chemical or physical change? [duplicate]

Applying pressure can result in chemical changes, does this hold true for an avocado?
20
votes
3answers
5k views

What are the chemical reactions behind fire?

I've always wondered what the chemistry behind fire is. What are the basic chemical reactions behind a simple wood fire, and how do they manifest into this phenomenon?
4
votes
1answer
4k views

Is there a way to detect bleach residue on a surface?

I was wondering if there is a way to detect for presence or residue of bleach using household items. I am curious about either chlorine-based or peroxide-based. It can be any sort of reaction that ...
4
votes
1answer
2k views

Galvanic corrosion between nickel brass nut and stainless bolt

I am planning to install something on a boat that will be in salt water, and my question is, will the nickel plated brass fastener not corrode if I connect it to stainless steel? I looked it up on ...
13
votes
2answers
6k views

Why does hand sanitizer turn into a liquid after coming out of the bottle?

Hand sanitizer is a gel in its bottle, but when I pour it on my palm, it turns into a free flowing liquid. Why does that happen? It doesn't turn to a liquid when I pour it on my floor or my table. ...
0
votes
1answer
510 views

Why is it called “carbonation”?

Why is it referred to as "carbonation" and we drink "carbonated" beverages when carbonate is $\ce{CO3}$ while $\ce{CO2}$ (carbonite?) is present in carbonation?
8
votes
3answers
4k views

Methane seems to dissolve more readily in cold water. Why?

When you are diluting air in the system and/or properly evacuating it, you must consider water temperature. Methane is completely dissolved in water at 42 degrees Fahrenheit (5.5 C) but can be ...
4
votes
2answers
1k views

Why must an oxidizer not touch rubber?

Why is it that oxidizers (specifically $\ce{KClO3}$) are at risk of causing a fire when they come into contact with the rubber stopper used to contain them in their container, but can be slowly heated ...
19
votes
2answers
155k views

Will alcohol or soap damage plastic or rubber?

I have read conflicting advice on various sites about the appropriate methods for cleaning plastic and rubber items and would like to ask people who actually know what's going on what they would ...
18
votes
2answers
406 views

Can molecules diffuse upstream when emptying a cup of tea?

I was drinking some tea, and I randomly decided to pour some into the toilet in an unbroken stream; can particles travel "upstream" quickly enough to reach the mug of tea? How fast can diffusion occur ...
1
vote
1answer
756 views

Do dishwashing detergent and stain remover powder/stick have the similar ability to remove collar rings?

For yellow rings on shirts caused by skin grease or sweat: Some recommended to use an "Oxyclean" stain remover or stain remover stick for cleaning. Some recommended to use dishwashing detergent to ...
2
votes
2answers
177 views

Are words on my T-shirt removable? [closed]

I wonder if the words on my T-shirt are removable? If yes, what kind of (chemical or physical) ways are there? They look like paints on the cloth, as the letter "C" has become blurred in the way ...
15
votes
1answer
1k views

Does the chemical in an alkaline battery make battery leaks unavoidable?

Battery leaks was an issue in the 80s and 90s, and since quality and innovation is constantly improving, I thought battery leak might be slowly going away. But I found that even nowadays, name brand ...
5
votes
2answers
1k views

Good acid for cleaning marine toilets

Problem: On my boat I have a marine toilet. It is operated with salt water. The problem is, on the interior of the outflow tubing it accumulates some sort of hard grime. I am looking for a good way ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Why do lipids in a cell hydrolyze into glycerol and fatty acids?

Most Lipids in a cell have ester bonds (made up of glycerol and fatty acids). I have learned in my chemistry class that we can hydrolyze an ester by simply adding water to it. $$\ce{CH3COOCH2CH3 + ...
2
votes
1answer
1k views

What is the chemical structure of the cocoate ion vs. the olivate ion?

I am wondering how the cocoate ion (in natural soaps, in the form of sodium or potassium cocoate and from the saponification of coconut oil) differs structurally from the olivate ion (from the ...
12
votes
3answers
10k views

Copper Chloride: neutralizing and disposal

I plan on etching some PCBs with hydrochloric acid and hydrogen peroxide, which will therefore produce some kind of copper chloride (green color) which is highly toxic if released into the ...
7
votes
1answer
756 views

What is the molecular structure of the coating on cast iron cookware known as seasoning?

When a piece of cast iron is repeatedly covered in fat and exposed to heat it develops a hard, black, non-stick coating referred to as "seasoning". What exactly is this coating made of molecularly? ...
6
votes
3answers
7k views

Diamond filtering - is it real or bogus?

I always hear that some big corporations use "diamond dust" to filter water seven times to make "diamond clear" vodka. I tried googling something about using diamonds for filtering, but I could not ...
14
votes
3answers
14k views

What is the effect on humans of using dry ice and liquid nitrogen as food additives?

I have seen on a TV show that some guy uses dry ice (solid $\ce{CO2}$) to make ice cream and on an another TV show, liquid nitrogen ($\ce{N2}$) is used with tequila. Both are edible. I know that ...
8
votes
1answer
699 views

How does brewing time and brewing temperature affect the flavonoid concentration of green tea?

I've searched a lot for this, but I still cannot find any good explanations for how these two factors affect flavonoid concentrations.
7
votes
1answer
121 views

How do you determine the amount of acrylamide in foods such as baked fries?

There are many food studies which determine the concentration of a substance in a food item. For example, this study determines the concentration of acrylamide in solid foods like fries. By what ...
8
votes
1answer
920 views

Does borax do anything more for “boosting” detergent than adding active oxygen would?

Borax, $\ce{Na2B4O7}$, is often marketed as a "laundry booster" under the brand "20 Mule Team Borax". The unit crystal of borax can be seen below. Other laundry products in the past have added ...
12
votes
4answers
7k views

The mole is used extensively in chemistry, why not elsewhere?

In chemistry, the unit "mole" is used in many places, and is an important tool when working with quantities. I have not seen it used elsewhere--for example, we never count people or TVs with the unit....
14
votes
6answers
48k views

Handling and storing sodium hydroxide, hydrochloric acid, hydrogen peroxide and isopropyl alcohol

I'm an electrical engineering and I hope you can give me some advice as I'm not much into chemistry. I'm trying to start making my PCB (Printed Circuit Board) at home but I'd like to have some advice ...
19
votes
2answers
6k views

Chemical compounds responsible for the colors in flowers?

I know that anthocyanins are a class of compounds responsible for the purple colors found in flower petals. Anthocyanins (also anthocyans; from Greek: ἀνθός (anthos) = flower + κυανός (kyanos) = ...
20
votes
1answer
25k views

How does adding lemon juice to sugar make better caramel?

It's a common cooking advice: if you want a somewhat softer caramel, add some lemon juice to the sugar: To help prevent the caramel from crystallizing, you can add an acid to the sugar before you ...
7
votes
1answer
3k views

Hanging a spoon on the face

Well, I have seen many comical acts where people balance a spoon (or a fork) on different parts of the face like on the tip of the nose, forehead etc. The do this by blowing moist air (see below) and ...
22
votes
2answers
14k views

Silver and milk (or milk products)

In the title I am refering to silver spoons, which, when used to consume milk products (like yogurt), get a weird taste. It could be described as umami/meaty, a little bit like onions. I came to the ...
16
votes
1answer
2k views

What material are heat bags made of?

I just bought a heat bag from store and it has special property. It is made up of transparent plastic bag and transparent unknown liquid inside when sold. There is a tiny circular metal piece in ...
8
votes
1answer
86 views

Retention of surface texture after combustion

Just some while ago I was burning a box of cardboard in my backyard and I saw a very curious phenomenon. I saw that as the cardboard box started burning it started to curl. Up after a while as I ...
2
votes
1answer
3k views

Is soap the natural form of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate?

I was told that "Sodium Tallowate, sodium cocoate and sodium palm kernelate are the 'natural' forms of SLS". Is this true? I thought "natural" SLS would be SLS derived from a natural product such as ...
16
votes
1answer
3k views

Why does gum get harder to chew after a while?

My Sister asked me this: "Why is it that when we chew gum, it is soft and mushy to begin with , but slowly gets firmer and firmer like after 20 mins of chewing?" I think it is because when we ...
20
votes
2answers
25k views

Why are the majority of cleaning solutions basic?

When testing for pH for common household cleaning products, such as dishwasher fluid, I noticed that majority of them tend to be basic? Why is that? Do acid make good cleaning solutions as well?
3
votes
2answers
10k views

Why does activated carbon preferentially adsorb anions?

Brands like Brita and Pur (in the U.S.) have made a name for themselves for the ability of their product (essentially a large-pore filter with activated carbon/charcoal) to extract the added chlorine ...
17
votes
2answers
5k views

Not your ordinary hard water deposit

We have a well that delivers hard water and we do not have a water softener. (There was a “green sand filter” that utilizes permanganate to oxidize other metals on the system, but it has been ...
26
votes
3answers
19k views

Why does ice cream make soda fizz?

I've noticed that adding a chunk of ice cream to soda makes the soda fizz slightly near the soda-ice cream interface. I thought it was a physical effect due to the temperature, but adding ice has no ...
9
votes
1answer
2k views

What's the chemical nature of a dishwasher's rinsing agent?

It seems that a rinsing agent helps the dishes in the dishwasher dry much better than they do without it (which I recently noted on my new dishwasher). What molecules are used in the composition of ...
76
votes
3answers
3k views

If nothing sticks to Teflon, how does Teflon stick to frying pans?

The most notable characteristic of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE, DuPont's Teflon) is that nothing sticks to it. This complete inertness is attributed to the fluorine atoms completely shielding the ...