Balance: Na + H2O --> NaOH + H2?

Balancing chemical equation refers to balancing the stoichiometric coefficients on the reactants and products side. This must be done as the chemical equation obeys the law of conservation of mass and momentum.

Law of Conservation

Law of conservation of mass governs the balancing of a chemical equation. According to this law, mass can neither be created nor be destroyed in a chemical reaction and obeying this law total mass of the elements or molecules present on the reactant side should be equal to the total mass of elements or molecules present on the product side. If the chemical equation is not balanced law of conservation is not applicable.

Balancing the given equation

Na + H2O –> NaOH + H2

Following are the easy steps to balance the equation:

Step 1: Write the Unbalanced Chemical Equation Let us consider an unbalanced equation

Na + H2O –> NaOH + H2

Step 2: Write Down Number of Atoms Write down the number of atoms of each element present on both reactant as well as product side

Atom Reactant side Product side
Na 1 1
H 2 3
O 1 1

Step 3: Add Coefficients To Balance the Mass in a Chemical Equation Note that the coefficients that are to be added must be a whole number and one coefficient added applies to all the atoms present in that one particular molecule.

2Na+2H2O—> 2NaOH+H2

After balancing the equation we get the number of reactants and products as given in the table

Atom Reactant side Product side
Na 2 2
H 4 4
O 2 2

Since the number of atoms is equal on both the side of the equations, the given chemical equation is balanced.

Hence the balanced chemical equation is

2Na+2H2O—> 2NaOH+H2

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