Identifying Strong Electrolytes, Weak Electrolytes, and Nonelectrolytes - Chemistry Examples | Summary and Q&A

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August 13, 2017
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Identifying Strong Electrolytes, Weak Electrolytes, and Nonelectrolytes - Chemistry Examples

TL;DR

Learn how to distinguish between strong electrolytes, weak electrolytes, and non-electrolytes based on their ability to conduct electricity in water.

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Questions & Answers

Q: What is the main difference between a strong electrolyte, a weak electrolyte, and a non-electrolyte?

The main difference lies in their ability to conduct electricity in water. Strong electrolytes conduct it very well, weak electrolytes conduct it to a lesser extent, and non-electrolytes do not conduct electricity at all.

Q: Can you provide examples of strong electrolytes?

Yes, examples of strong electrolytes include strong acids (e.g., hydrochloric acid), strong bases (e.g., potassium hydroxide), and highly soluble ionic compounds (e.g., sodium chloride).

Q: What are some examples of weak electrolytes?

Weak electrolytes can be insoluble ionic compounds (e.g., silver chloride), weak acids (e.g., acetic acid), weak bases (e.g., ammonia), or compounds that ionize only partially in water.

Q: What makes a compound a non-electrolyte?

A non-electrolyte is a compound that does not ionize in water, such as sugars (e.g., sucrose, glucose) and alcohols (e.g., methanol). They do not conduct electricity.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • A strong electrolyte conducts electricity very well, while a weak electrolyte conducts it to a lesser extent, and a non-electrolyte does not conduct electricity in water.

  • Strong electrolytes include strong acids, strong bases, and highly soluble ionic compounds, which ionize completely in water.

  • Weak electrolytes can be insoluble ionic compounds, weak acids, weak bases, or compounds that ionize only partially.

  • Non-electrolytes, such as sugars and alcohols, do not ionize in water and do not conduct electricity.

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