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.

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123 views

Vacuum filtration: will Polymer elements interfere with the vacuum?

I am doing an experiment with vacuum filtration, where a Nylon filter is used to create a membrane (marked in pink in the picture attached). When I use the membrane, it frequently breaks in the ...
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642 views

Is there an important difference between soap and detergent?

I've read recently somewhere that most "soaps" are actually detergents and the real soap would not be a good idea in everyday applications like washing hands, shower gels and shampoos, and dish ...
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93 views

How to slow/prevent corrosion of a steel post

I have a steel post set in limestone, about 18-20 inches deep, with some concrete around it. I just noticed that I have about 6 inches of water inside the post. The limestone had a small seam in it ...
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189 views

Is there any chemicals that I can add to soy bean wax

I recently decided to make homemade candles in my spare time since all 6 kids have left the house. After much research and trial and error and reading many articles, I have found that Soy wax does ...
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36 views

Purple rinse water

After forming a white substance while on the stove, I rinsed the Pyrex pot under tap water (from a well), whereupon the water in the pot turned purple. Why did this happen? Iron and sulfur are ...
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101 views

Composition of carbon rods in alkaline batteries

The carbon rods in batteries look somewhat similar to graphite, but they do not leave a significant mark on paper. What form of carbon are they? Are they simply just graphite with a large amount of ...
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1k views

What are these fluffy white crystals growing out of my floor tiles?

Does anyone know what these white crystals are? As you an see they are growing out of some floor tiling in my house. They have been appearing for some years now out of the floor, which is cleaned ...
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36 views

Reagent for identification of Water Hemlock (Cicuta) or Cicutoxin?

Chemical reagents are used for macroscopic identification of some wild mushrooms. Are there similar reagents used to identify Water Hemlock (or potentially cicutoxin) as a supplement to visual ...
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37 views

What chemical measurements are related to the degree of flavor extracted by alcohol?

A recent project of mine includes making infusions of various ingredients to make liqueurs and bitters. Infusions, I've learned, vary widely in the amount of flavor extracted from an ingredient. ...
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127 views

It is easier to iron cotton clothes when slightly wet, why?

As the title says, why is it easier to iron cotton clothes when slightly damp ? Has this got something to do with the hydrogen bonding in cotton ?
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307 views

Coffee and orange juice concentrations with a twist

This question dates back to a time where I used to watch something called The Curiosity Show... Kinda like Bill Nye the Science Guy's show. I just can't recall the answer to this so I'm hoping that ...
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138 views

Is passivation of stainless steel feasible in the field?

Does anyone have input or experience on passivation of stainless steel, particularly in outdoor environments where submersion of components is not practical due to location or size? Nitric acid (and ...
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811 views

Why does the black powder that comes off aluminum pans behave the way it does?

When I wet an aluminum pot or cookie sheet and then dry it with a towel, it creates dark gray marks on the towel. This happens more if the aluminum is a little rough. It seems that there's a fine ...
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268 views

Interaction between soy milk and coffee producing bubbles

I noticed when I poured my soy milk (which I shook as per the directions on the carton) into my coffee, a large number of very fine bubbles rose to the surface. What causes this? Is there a chemical ...
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47 views

Do chemicals undergo granular convection?

Do chemicals of an average weight, such as Polyethylene Glycols, undergo granular convection (the Brazil nut effect)?
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83 views

Clean tin with aluminium

I've been using aluminium foil and table salt to clean my silverware for a long time without actually concerning myself with the chemistry behind it. A couple of days ago i started digging into the ...
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1answer
4k views

Laser cutting polyurethane

I have a laser cutting machine and have always read that PVC (or types of vinyl in general) are very dangerous to cut because it releases chlorine gas. Chlorine gas = toxic (plus the $\ce{HCl}$ thing),...
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1answer
6k views

What is the transparent film that covers water-soluble dishwasher tablets?

These dishwasher tablets (Finish Powerball Shine) seem to be covered in plastic! But that can't possibly be true since there's no unwrapping, and they're completely soluble in water. What is the ...
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1answer
50 views

Safe reaction to maintain 30psi (2 bar) of gas, while that gas is released at random?

I'm going to use it to power a Lego Pneumatic Engine (LPE) (random example, not mine), that will be self-contained, and start and stop a lot using a throttle valve. So the requirements are: Use ...
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1answer
26 views

ZnO ink viscosity

I have stumbled upon the below instructions on how to create ZnO nanoparticules: https://www.google.com/amp/s/ninithi.wordpress.com/2015/08/06/make-your-own-photocatalytic-zinc-oxide-nanoparticles-a-...
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28 views

Science of soap bubbles

On the web there are tons of different recipes for a solution to make soap bubbles. Most of them use only three ingredients: water dish soap glycerin But their ratios widely change among the sources....
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121 views

What gas is evolved when using vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, and salt to etch copper, and why?

The question of how vinegar + hydrogen peroxide + table salt can be used to etch copper has been asked before (Full equation when using vinegar, hydrogen peroxide, and salt to etch copper). However, ...
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43 views

Oxide caused by running a saucepan with aluminium handle through the dishwasher

Having run a saucepan with an aluminium handle through the dishwasher, the handle is producing a dark grey dusty residue, which I assume is an oxide of aluminium. The dishwasher was run with a typical ...
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45 views

Difference between liquid and solid stearic acid

I had some stearic acid in solid pellet format. It is slippy and in white color. I used this to make some experiments. I recently notice that some manufacturer can supply liquid stearic acid. I ...
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13 views

Starch Amylase Experiment using Iodine

The starch and iodide test is to detect amylose, a polysaccharide. We add an iodide solution to a sample and observe a color change with the starch; it turns dark blue. I am doing a bio/chem ...
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92 views

Why is my washing powder not to be used for pre-wash?

Apologies but I can't find a more suitable stack exchange website to ask this question. I feel the technical answer is chemical in nature so I landed here. For at least the past two years (and on-...
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100 views

Propylene Glycol to clean vinyl records

I clean vinyl records with an ultrasonic record cleaning machine. Would propylene glycol be good to use as a surfactant in a 1 - 2 % concentration with distilled water? Would it harm the vinyl record?...
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179 views

Is propanol 1-2 diol 178 the same as propylene glycol?

I clean vinyl records in an ultrasonic vinyl record cleaning machine the manual states it uses propanol 1-2 diol 178 as a surfactant. I think this is the same chemical as propylene glycol. Is it? ...
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21 views

Smoky lights at events - Piped in or a chemistry reaction of some kind?

Was at Dreamhack MTL this weekend and realised that in the whole venue there seems to be just a little bit of smoke in the spotlights and other light sources. You also see that kind of smoke in shows ...
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30 views

How to remove the foggy discoloration in polycarbonate tubes caused by acetone?

Unknowing that the tubes used in the centrifuge are made of polycarbonate, I cleaned them with acetone. Following, a white smoky discolouration appeared and the tubes turned opaque. Is there any way ...
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1answer
2k views

Will charcoal briquettes (not activated) absorb water out of the air in the house in a subtropical climate?

I live in Florida, an incredibly wet environment where it's very difficult to get moisture out of house without using a dehumidifier 24/7, which is too expensive. Would charcoal briquettes be of any ...
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45 views

natural staining on wood from human skin

I have a question about the dark staining that occurs on my wooden spectacle frames where they rub constantly with my skin around the ears and nose. Can anyone tell me what is causing this? And could ...
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1answer
83 views

Why is the pH level of carbonation loss decreasing then increases afterwards?

We have done an experiment of the titration of unsealed sprite soda to find the amount of carbonic acid being loss on various duration (0 to 1 hour), due to decrease pressure. The calculation was to ...
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84 views

Why does coconut oil spoil much faster than groundnut oil?

I have observed that various foods cooked using coconut oil spoil much faster than foods cooked using groundnut oil. One good example is Asian coconut milk curry. Even with proper refrigeration, this ...
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89 views

How to make rheoscopic fluid using glycol stearate flakes

Rheoscopic fluid can be made by adding mica powder to water. I read that mica powder can settle and condense after sitting around for a long time. So I want to use glycol stearate flakes instead. ...
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17 views

Another salt-dough question

In January 2017, someone asked how salt dough worked. How does salt dough work?. In the answer it was said that the salt gives toughness. My question is would the size of the salt crystals matter. ...
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58 views

What governs the amount of smoke produced by an extinguished match?

First Chemistry question, so apologies if this isn't quite in the spirit of this SE. I have noticed that when extinguishing a lit match by blowing it out, the amount of smoke produced can vary widely....
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68 views

Bio dishwashing liquid affecting kitchen pipes?

I have a query regarding bio washing-up liquid. We've recently experienced slow flow in our kitchen drain pipes, and the plumber whom we asked to have a look at them showed us there was some non-...
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1k views

Citric acid rust removal and neutralization

I'm currently removing rust from steel with citric acid dissolved in water. I generally use a wire brush as the final treatment to remove any surface rust that the acid loosened up. The pieces under ...
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I mixed Miracle Gro fertilizer and Soil Mender Liquid Fish in my hose-end sprayer to save time. The mixture became very cold. Why?

Miracle Gro = Ammonium Sulfate, Potassium Phosphate, Potassium Chloride, Urea, Urea Phosphate, Boric Acid, Copper Sulfate, Iron EDTA, Manganese EDTA, Sodium Molybdate, Zinc Sulfate. Soil Mender ...
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327 views

What occurs when stannous fluoride is combined with baking soda in the oral cavity?

I have googled this question in many forms over many months repeatedly. For some background, when stannous fluoride is combined with water, it forms precipitates and/or oxidizes, rendering it less ...
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381 views

Gluing bakelite together

I have an older stainless steel saucepan with what I've always called a Bakelite handle. The pan fell, the handle broke. If possible, I'd like to glue it. The break is near where the handle ...
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52 views

Looking for Desiccants

I am an engineer and not the best at chemistry, I am horrible at it, but I was wondering if it is safe to mix sodium hydroxide and calcium oxide to make a desiccant that also captures carbon monoxide? ...
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137 views

Does alum react with zinc?

I want to remove a hardened steel bolt in a block of zinc (there is a through-hole, so I have two sides to work with). I have done this previously with aluminum and steel before, using a solution of ...
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35 views

Scent neutralizer

I'm an avid outdoorsman and outdoors photographer. I use a lot of scent neutralizers to help me stay hidden. Buying the store brands get expensive so I found a recipe to make your own. the recipe is 1....
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100 views

Why is paper sometimes yellow?

Where I'm from, most paper you find/get at stores has this yellowish tinge. Why is it yellow and not white? In my chemistry book it's mentioned that paper manufacturers "refine" paper from wood pulp, ...
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209 views

Windex and Red wine

The other day I was cleaning my counter tops with windex. There was a couple red wine (cabernet sauvignon if it makes a difference) stains from the night before and the stains turned an gray/blue ...
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543 views

Series of dilution without a constant dilution factor?

I have to make a series of dilutions though the dilution factor is not constant. I'm trying to understand how to carry out this dilution in the most efficient way as not to waste much solution. ...
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4k views

Isolation of codeine phosphate from Tylenol 2

So here is my question. This may be controversial for some, but I would like to tell you it is purely speculative and has no bearing on anything I would actually do. If one has in their hands a ...
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53 views

What makes wrinkle-free cotton, wrinkle-free?

Disclaimer: No, I don't own any "wrinkle-free" articles of clothing. So I haven't been able to observe first-hand if "wrinkle-free" clothing is totally "wrinkle- free" (if it isn't, then perhaps "...