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pH of Household Items

pH of Household Items


A pH Meter is a scientific instrument that measures the hydrogen-ion concentration (or pH) in a solution, indicating its acidity or alkalinity.  Knowledge of pH is useful or critical in laboratory work.  pH meters of various types and quality can be used for soil measurements in agriculture; water quality for water supply systems, swimming pools, etc.; brewing, industrially or domestically; healthcare, to ensure that solutions are safe when applied to patients and many other applications.


In this laboratory experiment, your students will use a pH sensor to measure the pH value of various household substances.  They will compare these readings to the observations made using red and blue litmus paper.  Finally, they will use their observations and measurements to determine if a substance is an acid or base.  


    This U-PIK will include enough materials and supplies for eight student groups.  Suggested group size is 2-3 students.  The U-PIK will include the following:


    • 8 LabQuest 2 interfaces
    • 8 pH Sensors
    • 8 Boxes of Kimwipes
    • 9 Sets of vials containing household items
    • 8 DI Wash bottles
    • 9 Stirring rods
    • 10 50-mL beakers
    • 8 vials of red litmus paper
    • 8 vials of blue litmus paper

    The pH sensor can easily be used to support the concept of acids and bases.  The samples will be measured using two methods:  (1) litmus paper which will serve as a basic introduction to testing pH and (2) pH sensor which will serve as a more advanced technique.  Students should be aquainted with the basic understanding of acids and bases.    No calculations are required for this laboratory.  The laboratory experiment should be suitable for any middle or high school science classroom.    


    Time:  One laboratory session.


    Student Level:  BEGINNER (Grades 5-12)

  • pH Manual

  • Laboratory Experiment: Preview Document

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