Is the O-H bond in methanol polar or nonpolar?

2 Answers
Nov 5, 2016

It is polar because the oxygen atom has a greater electronegativity than the hydrogen atom.


The O-H bond in methanol is polar in the same way the O-H bonds in water are polar. The oxygen atom is more electronegative than the hydrogen atom, so the shared electrons are held more closely by the oxygen atom. This results in the oxygen atom having a partial negative charge and the hydrogen atom having a partial positive charge.

The image below illustrates the polarity of the O-H bond. The symbol #delta# means partial or partially. The symbol #delta+# means a partial positive charge, and #delta-# means a partial negative charge.

Nov 5, 2016

The #O-H# bond in methanol #(CH_3OH)# is polar because of electronegativity of the oxygen atom.


Oxygen atom #(O)# is more electronegative than a hydrogen atom #(H)#.
Thus, the #O# atom attracts the entire electron density of the #H# atom towards itself.

As a result of this, a polarity develops in the #O-H# bond. This also results into another concept called "hydrogen bonding".

Here's a video which will certainly help you :

The Organic Chemistry Tutor