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Does adding vinegar to water increase the evaporation rate of the water?

  1. Jul 26, 2012 #1
    So my friend came home from work and asked me why adding vinegar to water aids in evaporatoin. He said they had them clean with this solution because it helped the water dry up faster. However, I've only had two years of study in chemistry and I can't say I know for certain.

    I know that vinegar is an acid, and so the only thing that I could think of was that there was a possible increase in energy as the vinegar dissolves in the solution which could be absorbed by the water? It may sound goofy, but honestly I don't know enough to make any other assumptions.

    Could someone explain to me how this works, or at least fill me in if its just an old wives tale?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 27, 2012 #2

    DrDu

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    Science Advisor

    My understanding is the following: Adding alcohol or vinegar to water when cleaning reduces the surface tension of the water. Hence the tendency of water films to agglomerate into drops is reduced. A thin water film has a higher surface to volume ratio than a drop which speeds up vaporization.
     
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