What is a precipitation reaction?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

Precipitation reaction is a chemical reaction where aqueous solutions produce precipitates. Precipitates are created by chemical processes in aqueous solutions called precipitation reactions. The insoluble salt that forms as the reaction progresses is the precipitate, from whence the reaction’s name derives. It is possible for a cation/anion pair in the new, combined solution to produce an insoluble salt when two solutions with different salt concentrations are combined.

Properties of Precipitates and Precipitation Reaction

  1. Precipitation reactions lead to an ionic state in an aqueous solution or medium.
  2. A reaction takes place between ions present in an aqueous solution to form a product. The product formed at the end of a precipitation reaction is a precipitate that is insoluble in aqueous solution. It is known as an ionic reaction because it involves reacting to form a product.
  3. These reactions are dependent on temperature, solution concentration, buffers, etc.

Uses of Precipitation Reaction

Precipitation reactions help determine the presence of a particular element in a particular solution. These reactions also monitor the formation of precipitates when chemicals are added to the solution. These are used to extract magnesium from seawater. The human body also encounters these reactions that exist between antigens and antibodies.


AgNO3 (aq) + KCl (aq) → AgCl (s) + KNO3 (aq)


What is a precipitation reaction?

A chemical reaction known as a precipitation reaction results in precipitates from aqueous solutions. It is used in the extraction of magnesium from the water of sea. These reactions also occur between the antibodies and antigens present in human.

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