# Water is formed from the reaction of an acid and a base. Why is it not classified as a salt?

Mar 28, 2016

Because a salt is formally the compound formed from the metal and non-metal counterions, when an acid and a base are neutralized to give water.

#### Explanation:

Now normally we represent a neutralization reaction as a net ionic equation, viz.:

${H}_{3} {O}^{+} + H {O}^{-} \rightarrow {H}_{2} O \left(l\right)$

Now, of course, these ionic species are not discrete entities; they are each accompanied by a counterion. The base is normally associated with a metal cation, and the acid by a non-metal anion.

For example:

$\text{Sodium hydroxide" + "Hydrogen chloride" rarr "sodium chloride "+"water}$

Or, symbolically,

$N a O H \left(a q\right) + H C l \left(a q\right) \rightarrow N a C l \left(a q\right) + {H}_{2} O \left(l\right)$

Most of the time, the counterions, natrium and chloride, are just along for the ride; they are present in solution as $N {a}^{+} \left(a q\right)$, the aquated complex.

If I've missed the point of your question, I apologize.