Uses of Hydrochloric Acid, Daily Life, Industries and Applications of Hydrochloric Acid (For CBSE, ICSE, IAS, NET, NRA 2022)

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  • Hydrochloric acid is formed when Hydrogen Chloride gas is mixed in water. When the reaction takes place Hydrochloric acid also known as Muriatic Acid forms giving out a pungent smell and is basically an odorless and colorless solution. Each molecule of HCl is composed of a one-to-one ratio of hydrogen and chlorine. It is a highly corrosive chemical compound and can be toxic as well.
  • Hydrochloric acid or muriatic acid, is a poisonous, corrosive hazardous liquid that reacts with most metals to form explosive hydrogen gas and causes severe burns and irritation of eyes and mucous membranes. It is made by absorbing hydrogen chloride in water. Most acid is the byproduct of chlorination. Pure acid is produced by burning chlorine and hydrogen.
  • Hydrogen acid is available in technical, recovered, food processing and reagent grades. Frequently the commercial grades are slightly yellow as a result of impurities notably dissolved iron. Reagent grade, which normally contains about 37.1 % hydrochloric acid, is perfectly clear and colorless.
Hydrochloric Acid

Hydrochloric Acid Uses

  • Stomach makes HCl naturally which further helps in the digestion of food. Hydrochloric acid acidifies the stomach contents.
  • This acid is also found primarily in several industries like rubber, textiles, and even in photography. It is also a common item in homes. Lot of uses of Hydrochloric acid in the production of steel, batteries, fireworks etc.

5 Common Uses of Hydrochloric Acid

  • Production of Organic Compounds
  • Production of Inorganic Compounds
  • Removing metal stains
  • Oil production
  • Purification of Table Salt, and pH Control

Production of Organic Compounds

Hydrochloric acid/is used in the production of organic compounds like vinyl chloride and dichloroethane for plastics or PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) , bisphenol A, and many others.

Production of Inorganic Compounds

This acid is used to prepare compounds that are used as water treatment chemicals. Some examples include polyaluminium chloride (PAC) , iron (III) chloride, ferric acid, an aluminum carbohydrate which are used in treating the water. It is also used in the regeneration of ion exchange resins and it is specifically used to rinse the cations from the resins.

Removing Metal Stains and Cleaning Stone and Tiles

Hydrochloric acid is highly corrosive and because of this nature, it is used as a chemical to remove stains or rust especially from metals like iron, copper, and others. It is often used in a diluted form. Hydrochloric acid is commonly used for cleaning tiles in kitchens and bathrooms and it also disinfects thoroughly. It is also used in the textile industry for bleaching clothes and process leather in the leather tanning industry.

For Purification of Table Salt and pH Control

This acid is used to purify table salts. Further, HCl is used mostly for regulating the acidity (pH) of solutions and it is used in controlling the pH of pharmaceutical products, foods, and water.

For Oil Production

Hydrochloric acid is used in the production of oil production. Generally, HCl acid is injected into a rock where due to the reaction the rock forms large-pore structures.

Hydrochloric Acid Uses in Daily Life

Hydrochloric acid was dissolved in liquids and dumped in the sea. Hydrochloric acid is a solution of hydrogen chloride gas in water. Some industrial uses of hydrochloric acid are

  • Production of glucose and corn sugar from starch
  • Cleaning or pickling of metals
  • Refining of cane sugar
  • Making glue and gelatin
  • Manufacturing synthetic rubber and plastics
  • Purification of common salt
  • Manufacture of aqua regia to dissolve noble metals such as gold and platinum.

HCl Acid Uses

  • HCl is the most common acid used. Organic acids acetic acid and formic acids came into use because they are less corrosive than hydrochloric acid. Therefore, their primary benefit is in high temperature applications.
  • Formic acid is more strongly reactive than acetic and is closer to HCl in strength albeit still weaker. Therefore, formic acid is not often used alone, although it can be. When it is necessary to replace HCl completely with a weaker acid, acetic acid is the common and most logical choice.
  • Acetic and formic acids are more commonly used in combination with HCl, HCl-acetic, HCl-formic and formic acetic acid blends exist for high temperature acidizing applications.

Industries and Applications of Hydrochloric Acid

Food and Beverage

  • Purifying table salt
  • Additives such as fructose, calcium chloride, citric acid, and hydrolyzed vegetable protein


  • Leather
  • PVC (Poly Vinyl Chloride)
  • Oil well production
  • Rock salt
  • Oil well production


  • Pickling
  • Steel Processing

Household Maintenance

Tile and porcelain cleaners


  • Water Treatment
  • Regulate pH for production of drinking water, foods and pharmaceuticals
  • Pool Disinfectant

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