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Hot Ice Experiment

You know we love science activities here on Toys In The Dryer. We especially love ones that use things we normally keep on hand in our house or kitchen. This hot ice experiment is one you can do if you have a little time as I guarantee you have the ingredients in your kitchen!

hot ice experiment

You’ll need:

  • 1 liter of distilled white vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons of baking soda
  • a large sauce pan
  • a bowl with a lid or a bowl with plastic wrap

Does this experiment sound an awful lot like a volcano experiment? It sure does, but in my opinion, the hot ice experiment is MUCH cooler.

I must give you fair warning before I give you the directions for hot ice: You’ll need time for this experiment as it takes a minimum of 2 hours to set up. You’ll also need to be prepared for your house to smell like vinegar as you boil it. In fact, Hubby came home from work, took one whiff of the house and asked Nutty if we were doing science experiments that day!

Hot Ice Experiment

1) Mix the vinegar and baking soda in your sauce pan.

SLOWLY mix them together or you’ll get the volcano effect and end up with the solution on the outside of your pan vs in it. You do NOT want to lose any mixture over the edge of your pan.

hot ice experiment

2) Boil the solution over medium heat for about an hour.

You know your solution is done when there is about 100 ml left or when a thin film forms on the top. Don’t worry if you over or under boil it. It can be fixed. It’s better for your kids if you get it right the first time though 🙂 Your solution may turn a yellow color. That’s ok.

hot ice experiment

3) Cool the solution in the refrigerator

Pour your boiled solution into a new bowl and immediately cover to prevent further evaporation. If crystals form when you pour your liquid, add just enough vinegar to dissolved them then cover the solution and refrigerate.

hot ice experiment

4) Pour the solution into a new bowl and watch the ice form!

Once completely cooled, pour your solution into a new bowl. It should immediately form ice when you pour it. If it doesn’t, add a small sprinkle of baking soda to it.

hot ice experiment

5) Notice your ice is hot!

Touch the ice you just formed. Notice something weird? It’s hot! That’s why they call this the hot ice experiment!

My girls thought this experiment was awesome. Even hubby thought it was really cool.

You can heat up (boil) the ice and reuse the solution if you want. Just remember, if crystals form when you don’t want them to, add more vinegar. If crystals don’t form when you want them to, add more baking soda.

Here’s the hot ice experiment in a video so you can see the ice form and listen to my girls’ (and husband’s) reactions.

This video is also awesome, it is just so pretty!