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how to calculate percentage of salt in water

how to calculate percentage of salt in water

how to calculate percentage of salt in water

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how to calculate percentage of salt in water
how to calculate percentage of salt in water

How to Make a Five Percent Solution With Salt

A salt solution, also called a saline solution, is simply a mixture of salt and water. Salt is the solute (the dissolving substance), and water is the solvent (the substance that dissolves another to create a solution). To make a salt solution by weight percent (w/v), you apply the formula w/v = (mass of solute ÷ volume of solution) × 100. The density of water is 1 gram per milliliter (g/ml) which means 1 milliliter of water weighs 1 gram.

Things You’ll Need

Work out how much salt solution you need. For this example, say you need 200 ml of salt solution.

Work out 5 percent of 200, i.e., 0.05 × 200 = 10. To make a 10 percent salt solution, work out 10 percent of 200 and so on. You can also work this out by re-arranging the formula, but multiplying the final volume by the decimal form of the percentage is simpler.

Weigh 10 grams of salt. You can use any type of salt, including table salt.

Pour the salt into a graduated cylinder or volumetric flask containing about 180 ml of water. Swirl the flask gently until all the salt dissolves.

Add enough water to bring the final volume up to 200 ml. Don’t simply measure 200 ml of water and add 10 g of salt. Adding salt changes the final volume of the solution and affects the final percentage.

how to calculate percentage of salt in water
how to calculate percentage of salt in water

How to Make a 5% NaCl Solution

A “weight percent” represents one of the more common units chemists use to express the concentration of a solution. Mathematically, chemists calculate mass percent by (weight of solid) / (weight of solid and liquid) x 100. A solution that contains five percent salt, or NaCl, contains five ounces of NaCl per 100 ounces of total solution, where “total solution” refers to the combined weight of the NaCl and water together.

Weight out about 199 grams

Weight out about 199 grams, or seven ounces, of table salt and transfer the salt into an empty gallon container. If you do not own a scale or balance, you can approximate this measurement by using 10.5 level tablespoons of salt because one tablespoon of salt weighs about one ounce and 7.0 ounces x 1.5 tablespoons = 10.5 tablespoons. A balance, however, provides a more accurate measurement of weight.

Open a gallon container of distilled water and add the salt directly to the container. Cap the container and, with your hand holding the cap securely in place, invert the container to mix the contents. Continue inverting the container until no solid NaCl crystals can be seen on the bottom of the container.

How to Dilute Copper Sulfate

Dilution is a chemical process that belongs in the home and the laboratory. Even children comfortably use this process to prepare soft drink mixes long before they ever enter a science laboratory. Like many other solutions, copper sulfate, with its characteristic blue appearance, can be diluted using standard dilution procedures. Careful measurement is central to the process and determines the accuracy of the dilution. Using the process of dilution, you can quickly convert a concentrated solution of copper sulfate into an array of dilute solutions, each with a known concentration.

copper sulfate solution

Divide the initial concentration of copper sulfate solution by the final concentration you want to achieve by dilution to obtain the dilution factor. For example, if you start with a 1.0 mol/dm^3 concentration and want to end with a 0.1 mol/dm^3 concentration, then the dilution factor is 1.0/0.1 = 10. This ratio is often given as 1:10 and indicates that the final solution is 10 times less concentrated than the solution you start with.

Divide the volume of diluted copper sulfate solution you need by the dilution factor to obtain the unit volume. For example, if you need to make 500 ml of dilute copper sulfate solution using a dilution factor of 10, the unit volume for dilution will be 500/10 = 50.


Measure one unit volume of the starting copper sulfate solution (also called the solute) using a pipette and transfer this unit volume of solute to the flask. For example, if you need to make 500 ml of dilute copper sulfate solution using a dilution factor of 10 and a starting concentration of 1.0 mol/1,000 ml, transfer 50 ml of the 1.0 mol/1,000 ml solute to the flask.

Multiply one less than the dilution factor by the unit volume to obtain the amount of water that should be added to the solute in the volumetric flask. For example, if you need to make 500 ml of dilute copper sulfate solution using a dilution factor of 10, then add (10-1) x 50 ml = 450 ml of water to the solute in the flask.

Close the flask with a stopper and shake to mix the contents thoroughly. The result will be an appropriately diluted solution.

How to Make a Sodium Chloride Solution

A solution of sodium chloride — better known as table salt — and water is known as a saline solution; there are many reasons why you would need one. For example, a normal saline solution, which is one that matches the salinity of the body, is the best one for making a dental rinse or flushing out the eyes. You can mix a percentage-by-weight saline solution by weighing the salt you add to a specific amount of water, or you can mix a molar solution — useful for lab work — by calculating the molecular weight of a sodium chloride molecule.

Mixing a Percentage-By-Weight Solution

Pour clean water into a graduated flask large enough to hold the amount of solution you need. To get a pure saline solution that is free of impurities, you should use distilled water. Fill the flask with about 80% of the water that will be in the final solution. For example, if you’re making 100 milliliters of solution, fill the flask to the 80-milliliter mark.

Calculate the weight of salt you need. The weight — measured in units compatible with the water volume units — determines the percentage of the solution. Divide it by the volume of water and multiply by 100 to get the percentage. For example, to make 100 milliliters of normal saline solution, which is a 0.9% solution, you need nine grams of salt. If you need a pint of solution, you should add 2.9 tablespoons of salt.

Measure the salt and add it to the water. Swirl the flask until all the salt is dissolved. Once all the salt is dissolved, add water to increase the volume to the originally-intended amount.

Mixing a Molar Solution

Mix a molar solution in one liter of water. Molar concentrations are expressed as the number of gram-molecular masses of solute — in this case sodium chloride — you add to this liter of water.

Look up the molecular weights of sodium and chlorine on a periodic table. A salt molecule has one of each element, so you can add their weights together to get 58.44, the molecular weight of sodium chloride.

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