Ahmad's Science Club: Inflate a balloon with a chemical reaction

Science club balloon.PNG

Chemical reactions are known to take ingredients, combine them, and release something new.

In this experiment you will need the following items:

  • Balloons
  • Empty 2 liter bottle
  • A funnel
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Measuring cups

STEP 1) Measure 1 tablespoon of baking soda and pour it into a deflated balloon using a funnel.

STEP 2) Measure 1/2 cup of vinegar and pour it into the empty 2 liter bottle.

STEP 3) Attach the balloon to the top of the bottle WITHOUT dumping the baking soda in to the vinegar.

STEP 4) Once secure, tip the balloon upright to drop the baking soda in to the bottle.

STEP 5) WATCH THE REACTION! Your balloon should begin to inflate immediately.


A chemical reaction is taking place inside the bottle.

The first is an acid/base reaction between the sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) and the vinegar (diluted acetic acid).

This reaction creates sodium acetate and carbonic acid.

The carbonic acid is a product that is used most commonly in carbonated beverages like pop! It helps give it it's fizz.

Sodium acetate has many uses as a salt product but one such use is in the process of dialysis.

Once this reaction occurs, the carbonic acid begins to decompose and bubbles creating it's own by-products of water and carbon dioxide.

The carbon dioxide expands and fills the container and the balloon, causing it to inflate.