Why Detergent is better than Soap?

Why Detergent is better than Soap?

Detergent is better than soap for the following reasons:

Soaps are not appropriate for use with hard water. Soap does not work well in hard water since the Ca2+, Mg2+ ions of hard water react with soap forming insoluble substance. So, it creates unnecessary wastages of soap and also does harm to the fiber of the clothes.

RCOONa + Ca2+ —->(RCOO)2Ca

On the other hand, detergent works well both in hard acidic water and soft water, since detergent reacts with Ca2+, Mg2+ ions of hard water producing water-soluble calcium or magnesium salts. The charged ends of detergents do not form insoluble precipitates with calcium and magnesium ions in hard water. So, no harm is done to the garments.

R-OSO3-Na+Ca2+ (R-O-SO3)2Ca

  • Detergent is more soluble in water than soap.
  • Detergent is active in acidic and basic media which soap cannot do.
  • Detergent is a better cleaning agent than soap.
  • Detergent can be equally used both in aqueous and ‘ndn’ aqueous media.
  • Detergent can be used both in solid and liquid forms. But soap cannot use in such ways.

Some Advantages of detergents over soaps in our everyday life –

Both soaps and detergents are sanitization products that we regularly use in our daily lives. We use these products to clean our skin and hands wash our clothes without actually paying any concentration on how they work or is there any dissimilarity between them.

  • Detergents can be used in hard water whereas soaps cannot be used in it.
  • Detergents do not necessitate vegetable oils or fats for their preparation, thus reducing the burden on plants and animals.
  • Detergent is vigorous in an acidic and fundamental medium which soap cannot do.
  • Detergent can be used both in solid and liquid forms. But soap cannot use in such ways.

Detergents are favorite over soaps for washing clothes in hard water because – Detergents are the better cleansing agents than soaps because detergents work as a cleansing agent both in hard and soft water.

  • They do not form inexplicable precipitates with calcium and magnesium ions in hard water.
  • Detergents are more soluble and have better cleansing action than soaps. They give more foam in hard water.
  • Detergents do not oblige vegetable oils or fats for their preparation, thus they help in saving fats and oils for human expenditure.
  • Detergents can even be used with acidic water whereas soaps cannot be used. They have strong cleansing action.

Also, detergents manufacture more than soap. Although both the soap and detergents execute similar accomplishment, i.e. cleansing, there is an important dissimilarity between them.

Nice to know:

  • Soap is the sodium and potassium salt of higher fatty acid. The general formula of soap is

R-COONa or R-COOK, R = 12 – 18 C

  • Detergent or synthetic cleaning agent is the sodium salt of long-chained alkyl/aryl hydrogen sulphate or sulphonate. The general formula of detergent is

R/Ar – SO4/SO3 – Na, R = 12 – 18 C

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