Chemical Properties of Metals and Non-metals

Chemical Properties of Metal & Non-metal

Comparison of Chemical Properties of Metals and Non-metals:

Property Metals Non-metals
Reaction with Oxygen Metal + Oxygen → Metal oxide
4Na(s) + O2(g) → 2Na2O(s)
4Al(s) + 3O2(g) → 2Al2O3
Metals form basic oxides Zn and Al form amphoteric oxides (they show the properties of both acidic and basic oxides)
Most of the metal oxides are insoluble in water Some of them dissolve to form Alkali
Na2O(s) + H2O(l) → 2NaOH(aq)
Non-metal + Oxygen → Non-metal oxide
C + O2 → CO2
S + O2 → SO2
Non-metals form acidic oxides
CO and H2O are neutral oxides(they are neither acidic nor basic in nature)
Non-metal oxides are soluble in water
They dissolve in water to form acids
SO2 + H2O → H2SO3
Reaction with water Metals react with water to form metal oxides or metal hydroxide and H2 gas is released.
2Na(s) + 2H2O(l) → 2NaOH + H2(g) + heat
Non-metals do not react with water, steam to evolve hydrogen gas. Because Non-metals cannot give electrons to hydrogen in water so that it can be released as H2 gas.
Reaction with dilute Acids Metal + Acid → Metal salt + Hydrogen
Mg(s) + 2HCl(aq) → MgCl2(aq) + H2(g)
2Na(s) + H2SO4 → Na2SO4(aq) +H2(g)
Metal + HNO3 → H2 gas is not displaced.
Reason- HNO3 is a strong oxidizing agent.
Non-metals do not react with acids to release H2 gas.
Reason-Non-metals cannot lose electrons and give it to Hydrogen ions of acids so that the gas is released.
Mn + 2HNO3 → Mn(NO3)2 + H2
H2 gas from HNO3
Reaction with salt solutions When metals react with salt solution, more reactive metal will displace a less reactive metal from its salt solution.
CuSO4(aq) + Zn(s) → ZnSO4(aq) + Cu(s)
When non-metals react with salt solution, more reactive non-metal will displace a less reactive non-metal from its salt solution.
2NaBr(aq) + Cl2(g) → 2NaCl(aq) + Br2
Reaction with Chlorine Metal + Chlorine → Metal Chloride ionic bond is formed. Therefore Ionic compound is obtained.
2Na + Cl2 → 2NaCl
Non-metal + Chlorine → Non-metal Chloride covalent bond is formed. Therefore covalent compound is obtained.
H2(g) + Cl2 → 2HCl
Reaction with Hydrogen Metals react with hydrogen to form metal hydride. This reaction takes place only for most reactive metals.
2Na(s) + H2(g) → 2NaH(s)
Non-metals react with hydrogen to form hydrides.
H2(g) + S(l) → H2S(g)


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