Anything in this world that has mass and volume is considered a matter.

Tap water a.k.a the water that comes from your kitchen faucet or bathroom faucet is also a matter because you can measure its weight and volume.

Now let’s talk about the classification.

Is tap water an element, compound, or mixture?

Tap water is a mixture of various substances, so it’s not a standalone element. It mainly consists of pure water (H2O) and other substances such as copper (Cu), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), and Sodium (Na). The constituent doesn’t come in a definite ratio so it’s a mixture, not a compound.

According to state, tap water is obviously a liquid since it has a definite volume but it adapts to the shape of its container.

This post will talk more about the classification of tap water according to the composition.

So, keep on reading!

What Does Tap Water Consists Of?

To classify something according to its composition, we need to know the composition of the matter.

Tap water can come from groundwater, lake, or river. Usually, it’s being treated with chemical and physical processes but it doesn’t make the natural water become pure or distilled.

So, tap water is basically a natural water that has gone some refinement process so it’s not dangerous for health. In some countries, tap water is also drinkable.

Tap water consists of various substances. The main component is of course the water itself (H2O). There are various minerals in tap water, such as Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Copper (Cu), and Sodium (Na).

The ratio of the composition is not uniform throughout the world.

In some places in the world, the amount of Calcium is higher.

In some countries, the tap water isn’t added with Chlorine.

So, tap water has different composition throughout the world.

Is Tap Water An Element or Compound?

Tap water is neither an element or compound. In fact, it’s a mixture that generally consists of various elements and compounds.

As you can see earlier in this post, tap water has various things inside of it. It has H2O as the main constituent, but it also has various elements and possibly other compound in it.

Element is a standalone matter that cannot be split into something simpler. This is because it’s a pure matter that only consists of its own kind of atom. It has no addition so it cannot be broken down.

There are 118 known elements on the periodic table. Each of them has distinctive feature.

Beside being their own self, an element can combine chemically with other elements to form a compound.

Compound is a substance that is made of two or more elements that combine and forming a chemical bond. Compound has a definite ratio of composition. So, the same kind of compound will always has the same kind of molecule.

Pure water is a compound. It’s formed when hydrogen atoms bond with oxygen atom. The ratio is 2:1.

Tap water is not a compound because it consists of various things, not just pure water.

Is Tap Water A Mixture?

Yes, tap water is a mixture. It consists of different compounds and elements that combine physically without any definite ratio of composition.

The composition can vary according to the location and the treatment that is given by the supplier or government.

This means that tap water doesn’t has definite ratio of composition.

Thus, tap water is a mixture.

Is Tap Water Homogeneous or Heterogeneous?

Tap water is homogenous. You cannot see the physical boundaries in it because all of the components are distributed entirely.

In science, there are homogeneous mixture and heterogeneous mixture.

Homogeneous mixture, as the name suggests, look homogeneous. It has no visible separation in it. It looks thoroughly the same because the constituents are thoroughly distributed in the same state.

Some examples of homogeneous are air, brass, and vinegar.

Heterogeneous mixture, on the contrary has visible boundaries. The constituents are not distributed evenly so it’s not the same thorough.

Some examples of heterogeneous mixtures are a glass of water and oil and a bowl of cereal with milk.

Daniel Smithson

Hi, I'm Daniel Smithson, a Chemistry teacher for over 35-years and the founder of Learning should be fun and accessible to all. Find out more about our mission here:

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