# What would changing a subscript in a correctly written chemical formula do?

Mar 13, 2017

Well it would make it incorrect.......

#### Explanation:

Chemical reactions $\text{CONSERVE CHARGE}$, and $\text{CONSERVE MASS}$. This follows the principle of stoichiometry: garbage in invariably equal garbage out.

If the equation, the REPRESENTATION of a chemical equation, does not balance mass and charge, then we can reject the equation as a representation of reality.

And thus, which of the following equations is WRONG?

$C {H}_{4} \left(g\right) + 2 {O}_{2} \left(g\right) \rightarrow C {O}_{2} \left(g\right) + 2 {H}_{2} O \left(g\right)$

VERSUS

${C}_{2} {H}_{6} \left(g\right) + 4 {O}_{2} \left(g\right) \rightarrow 2 C {O}_{2} \left(g\right) + 3 {H}_{2} O \left(g\right)$