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Uses of Acetic Acid

Last updated date: 17th Apr 2024
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Uses of Acetic Acid in Daily Life and How Can We Prepare It?

You can find acetic acid in the paint which you have on the walls of your home. In addition to this, given the properties of acetic acid, you can use it as a descaler which is helpful in the removal of rust from metal objects. We can prepare this form of acetic acid by dripping the solution slowly over the "stalactite" of a solid acetic acid. The pure form of acetic acid will stick to the solid-state and turn into a solid. At the same time, any impurity present in the compound will wash off as a liquid.  

What is Glacial Acetic Acid? 

The acetic acid, which has a minimal amount of water, is called glacial acetic acid. The presence of water in this form of acetic acid is less than 1%, and it has one more name, which is called anhydrous acetic acid, which translates to water-free. We call it glacial acetic acid because of its nature of freezing up even at average room temperature. It gets into solid form when the temperature dips to 16.7 degrees celsius. 

Acetic Anhydride Uses

CH3COOH uses are many, but when we speak for the large numbers, then acetic anhydride is used as a raw material for the cellulose acetate fibers and plastics. As a result, we can see it being used as an acetylating agent and in chemical synthesis. The medicines in which acetic anhydride is present are aspirin, acetaminophen, etc. 

Glacial Acetic Acid Uses

Glacial acetic acid is most commonly used as a solid form of vinegar which is used in cooking. It is also used in making salads and used as a pickling agent when making pickles. You can also use it to marinate your meat and kill any microorganisms present in your meat. Also, you can use this acid to keep your eggshells from cracking in the boiling water. This will also give you the advantage over peeling as now you can easily peel off the shells faster without breaking them into smaller pieces. These were the two uses of acetic acid. 

Dangerous of Using Acetic Acid 

Acetic acid could be hazardous, and in some cases, it could even lead to significant injuries and severe burns if the exposure has been kept for a long time. People who are under the effect of breathing problems are more prone to the issues related to acetic acid as it can quickly get in their airways and cause them irritation for quite some time. 

The structure and uses of acetic acid are pretty simple. Thus, its correct use won't be harmful to anyone. Even products that contain acetic acid won't harm unborn children during pregnancy. The absorption of acetic acid in the body is relatively low, and therefore when you take it from your food, it doesn't affect the other parts of the body. However, if the lower concentration of acetic acids is causing some issues, make sure you don't give that to a pregnant mother as it could affect her child. 

If a user ingested it or the vapors of the acetic acid get in the lungs, it could cause irritation and breathlessness. In these cases, the user needs to see a doctor and get the required medical attention immediately. 

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Facts Students Needs to Know About Acetic Acid

  • Vinegar in your household is a typical example of acetic acid's presence in our daily lives. 

  • The other name of acetic acid is ethanoic acid, but the IUPAC name is still the same.

  • You might have done a volcanic science project in your school life. The lava that comes out from your volcano only gets out due to the reaction between baking soda and acetic acid, which is present in vinegar. 

  • The opened bottles of the wine smell like vinegar because the acetic acid in vinegar is formed by the process of fermentation in which ethanol is used as an alcohol base. 

  • The global demand for this compound is massive, and when calculated in numbers, it comes out to be 6.5 million tons. 

  • The concentrated acetic acid is called glacial acetic acid. The name's origin came from the acetic acid's high freezing point

  • To wash your fruits and veggies, one must use diluted vinegar as it is one of the best ways to kill any bacteria present in them. 

FAQs on Uses of Acetic Acid

Q1)What are the Dangers of using Acetic Acid, and how can You Protect Yourself from its Exposure? 

Answer) For many people, acetic acid isn't something they know about, but in truth, it is something quite common in households. As a result, if not used precariously, it could be harmful as well. The liquid is highly corrosive, and it could quickly burn the user's skin and eyes if not used carefully. 

When your skin gets in touch with acetic acid, you need to wash that part of your skin for at least 15 minutes. In case you have any contaminated clothing, you also need to remove it instantly. Once the cleaning is done, you need to cover your skin with an emollient. On the other hand, if you are wearing contact lenses and somehow got in contact with acetic acid, you first need to remove them and flush your eyes with plenty of water and seek medical attention. 

Q2) What are some of the Acetic Acid uses at Home?

Answer) Starting with the uses at home, the first thing which comes to our mind is the cleaning usage. Because of its acidic nature, this compound helps kill various types of fungus and microbes. It's a great way to disinfect your home from microorganisms. You can find them in floor cleaners, window cleaners, mildew cleaners, etc. 

You can find this acid in your food and the inks and dyes present in your home. Also, acetic acid is used as vinegar for making sour food. It helps in keeping the food safe from having any fungal growth. Lastly, perfumes that people tend to have in many bottles also used acetic acid to give perfumes their unique fragrance.