How do the properties of water relate to its polarity?

2 Answers

The polarity of water molecules means that molecules of water will stick to each other. This is called hydrogen bonding.

Polarity makes water a good solvent, gives it the ability to stick to itself (cohesion), stick to other substances (adhesion), and have surface tension (due to hydrogen bonding).

Check out video of a stream of water being bent - a plastic ruler is used in the demo. The stream of water bends due to the polarity of water molecules.

Video from: Noel Pauller

Here is video showing how a paperclip can "float" on water - it's actually being held up by the hydrogen bonds formed between water molecules which give water its surface tension.

Video from: Noel Pauller

Hope this helps!

Apr 17, 2015

Just to add to what mrpauller said:

Water is polar due to the fact that it has a bent tetrahedral molecular geometry thus the dipole moment of the water molecule is not zero, if it is zero then a molecule is non-polar (CO2 is an example) because of the force of pulling due to the hydrogen and lone pairs of electrons.

Because of this water experiences all the properties mentioned by mrpauller.