Are alcohols acidic in nature?

Asked by  | 19th Mar, 2008, 06:18: PM

Expert Answer:

Alcohols, like water, can show either acidic or basic properties at the O-H group. With a pKa of around 16-19 they are generally slightly weaker acids than water, but they are still able to react with strong bases such as sodium hydride or reactive metals such as sodium. The salts that result are called alkoxides, with the general formula RO- M+.

Meanwhile the oxygen atom has lone pairs of nonbonded electrons that render it weakly basic in the presence of strong acids such as sulfuric acid.

Answered by  | 29th May, 2008, 09:48: AM

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