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Calcium chloride, a type of salt that occurs in natural limestone and can also be made artificially, can be used in everything from reef tanks to icy roadways. Usually coming in pellets, calcium chloride can also be made into a liquid, which is more convenient for dosing and for completely covering extensive areas.
How much calcium chloride per gallon of water?
For a properly mixed calcium chloride solution, you’ll need to carefully measure your calcium chloride, meaning you will need 1200 grams of calcium chloride per gallon or water, which equals out to 42 ounces per gallon or 2.6 pounds per gallon.
How Much Water Do You Mix With Calcium Chloride?
Since the calcium chloride will be completely dissolved in water, it can be hard to detect how much of the salt is actually in the water.
Commercial manufacturers of liquid calcium chloride recommend liquid calcium chloride contains 20% to 45% calcium chloride by weight in water for it to be used safely.
This means when we are making liquid calcium chloride at home by mixing the solid calcium chloride pellets with water, we want to stay safely in that range. Any higher and you run the risk of experiencing some of calcium chlorides’ hazardous effects like skin irritation.
Too little calcium chloride means that your solution won’t be effective, especially when you’re using it to melt ice or prevent freezing.
How Do You Mix Calcium Chloride and Water?
Combining calcium chloride and water is relatively simple, but caution should be used when doing so.
To mix calcium chloride and water successfully, follow these instructions:
You’ll need: An empty gallon jug, funnel, 42 ounces of calcium chloride
- Insert the funnel into the mouth of the jug and slowly add the calcium chloride pellets
- Fill the jug halfway with cool water (RO/DI) and swirl the jug, being careful not to spill any of the solution
- Once all of the calcium chloride pellets have dissolved, fill the gallon jug the rest of the way and put the cap back on
- Turn the jug upside down three times to ensure a proper solution mixture
Make sure none of the calcium chloride solution spills on exposed skin! Small amounts of calcium chloride aren’t harmful, but larger amounts can cause severe skin irritation, desiccation of the mucous membranes, and even burns.
It’s also a great idea to label your new solution with a permanent marker, so it’s never used for the wrong task and to reduce the danger of poisoning.
Does Calcium Chloride Get Hot When Mixed With Water?
Yes, mixing water and calcium chloride can cause what is known as a exothermic reaction, making the solution warm.
The exothermic reaction caused by mixing calcium chloride to water usually isn’t dangerous, but as with any chemical reaction, wearing safety gear and exerting caution when mixing the two compounds should always be done.
If you’re worried about your calcium chloride solution becoming too hot, try adding the water to the pellets in smaller amounts, holding off on adding the next dose of water until the solution has cooled down.
What Is the Ratio of Calcium Chloride in Water?
The ratio of calcium chloride per water is 3/1. So, 3 parts water to 1 part calcium chloride.
We come by this ratio by looking back at the percentage of calcium chloride in water for a proper solution, which was 20% to 45%. If we average that out, we get 33%.
33% of calcium chloride dissolved in water roughly comes out to be a 3/1 ratio, 1 part calcium chloride to 3 parts water.
Ratios with solids and liquids can be difficult to measure by sight alone, so when making solutions like liquid calcium chloride, it’s always a good idea to use a scale for accurate measurements.
What is Liquid Calcium Chloride Used For?
The number 1 usage for liquid calcium chloride is for road maintenance, including preventing ice from forming, melting ice that is already present, and controlling dust.
Calcium chloride melts and prevents ice because it lowers the freezing point of water! So when it would usually be cold enough for water to freeze, the calcium chloride keeps it a much-more-manageable liquid instead of freezing solid and causing hazardous road conditions.
As we mentioned earlier, calcium chloride can also be used in aquariums! Calcium chloride is used as an additive to raise calcium levels, which are important for plant and coral growth, and for keeping the shells of snails pristine.
Corals especially need calcium to thrive, because without this necessary mineral, they cannot grow any more skeleton structure and will remain the same size.
Is calcium chloride harmful to the human body?
Calcium chloride is safe when used properly, but in larger amounts, it can be problematic. Calcium chloride can cause tongue and throat burns, excessive thirst, vomiting, stomach pain, low blood pressure, and other serious health consequences if consumed. Excessive dryness or desiccation of moist skin can also occur.
What is the common name for calcium chloride?
While there isn’t a common name for calcium chloride, it is also known by the name calcium dichloride or by the chemical names CaCl and CaCl2.
Is calcium chloride used in food?
Calcium chloride can be used in brines for cucumbers or other pickled vegetables, and can also be used to keep vegetables like bell peppers firm while awaiting sale.
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