Properties are characteristics that are unique to each substance and allow us to distinguish that substance from others. These properties can be described as physical or chemical.

Physical Properties:
Characteristics that can be observed without making changes to the composition of the substance; you can physically observe these properties with your senses, or in some cases by changing the temperature. The changes such as melting or a change in shape can be easily reversed in most cases.

Some examples:
  • states of matter
  • color
  • size
  • odor
  • density
  • dissolving
  • conductivity
  • smell
  • freezing point
  • boiling point
  • melting point
  • temperature

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Chemical Properties:
Characteristics that can be observed while a substance is undergoing a reaction, and a change to their internal structure is made. It is also in many cases irreversible and if not, it is extremely hard to reverse.

Some examples:
  • flammability
  • toxicity
  • reactivity
  • heat of combustion
  • reactivity with water
  • PH


Check out these interactive websites to learn more
about physical and chemical properties: