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Baking Soda vs. Washing Soda: What's the Difference?

Edited by Huma Saeed || By Sumera Saeed || Published on January 21, 2024
Baking soda is a mild, edible alkaline powder for cooking and cleaning, while washing soda is a stronger, non-edible alkaline compound for heavy-duty cleaning.

Key Differences

Baking soda, chemically known as sodium bicarbonate, is a versatile substance used in baking to cause dough to rise. Washing soda, on the other hand, is sodium carbonate, a stronger alkaline compound primarily used for heavy-duty cleaning tasks.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024
In terms of chemical composition, baking soda contains a single sodium atom, a hydrogen atom, and a carbon dioxide molecule, making it milder. Washing soda consists of sodium, carbon, and oxygen, but lacks the hydrogen atom, contributing to its higher alkalinity and strength.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024
Baking soda finds its use in culinary applications, such as acting as a leavening agent in baked goods. Washing soda, due to its caustic nature, is unsuitable for cooking and is instead effective in removing grease and stains in laundry and cleaning tasks.
Huma Saeed
Jan 21, 2024
Baking soda can neutralize acids, making it useful for relieving heartburn or acid indigestion. Washing soda, with its higher pH level, is more caustic and can cause skin irritation, thus requiring careful handling during use.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024
Baking soda is also used as a gentle cleaning agent for household chores, including removing odors. Washing soda, with its stronger composition, is used for more challenging cleaning jobs, like unclogging drains and removing stubborn stains.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024
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Comparison Chart

Chemical Name

Sodium Bicarbonate
Sodium Carbonate
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

PH Level

Lower, more neutral
Higher, more alkaline
Huma Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Edibility

Safe for consumption
Not safe for consumption
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Primary Use

Cooking, mild cleaning
Heavy-duty cleaning
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Effect on Skin

Generally safe
Can cause irritation
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024
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Baking Soda and Washing Soda Definitions

Baking Soda

An environmentally friendly cleaning agent.
I use baking soda to clean kitchen surfaces naturally.
Aimie Carlson
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

Effective in softening water in laundry.
Adding washing soda to laundry helps in removing tough stains.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Baking Soda

A white crystalline powder used as a leavening agent in baking.
I added baking soda to my cake recipe to make it rise.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

Can cause skin irritation due to its high pH.
Wear gloves when cleaning with washing soda to protect your skin.
Harlon Moss
Dec 26, 2023

Baking Soda

Baking soda is a mild alkali that can neutralize acids.
To alleviate heartburn, I drank water with a teaspoon of baking soda.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

Used to unclog drains and remove stubborn residue.
Washing soda can clear blocked kitchen drains effectively.
Janet White
Dec 26, 2023

Baking Soda

A gentle abrasive used in toothpaste.
My toothpaste contains baking soda for gentle teeth cleaning.
Janet White
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

A strong alkaline chemical used in heavy-duty cleaning.
I used washing soda to remove grease stains from my garage floor.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Baking Soda

Used as a deodorizer for refrigerators and carpets.
Sprinkling baking soda in the refrigerator helps eliminate odors.
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

Not suitable for consumption due to its caustic nature.
Washing soda is used for cleaning, not for cooking or eating.
Huma Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

Washing Soda

Alternative spelling of washing soda
Sumera Saeed
Dec 26, 2023

FAQs

Can I use washing soda for baking?

No, washing soda is not edible and should not be used in cooking.
Huma Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Are baking soda and washing soda interchangeable for cleaning?

They have different strengths; baking soda is milder and safer for many surfaces.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Can washing soda remove laundry stains?

Yes, it's effective in removing tough stains in laundry.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Does washing soda soften water?

Yes, it's effective in softening hard water, especially in laundry.
Harlon Moss
Jan 21, 2024

Can baking soda relieve heartburn?

Yes, it can neutralize stomach acid and relieve heartburn.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Is baking soda environmentally friendly?

Yes, it's a natural, biodegradable cleaning agent.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Is washing soda safe for all surfaces?

No, its high alkalinity can damage certain surfaces.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Is baking soda used in toothpaste?

Yes, for its mild abrasive and whitening properties.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024

How does baking soda affect baking?

It acts as a leavening agent, causing dough to rise.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Is washing soda stronger than baking soda?

Yes, washing soda is more alkaline and stronger.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Is baking soda edible?

Yes, baking soda is safe for consumption in food.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Can washing soda cause skin irritation?

Yes, due to its caustic nature, it can irritate the skin.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Can I use baking soda to clean my fridge?

Yes, it's great for deodorizing and gentle cleaning.
Sumera Saeed
Jan 21, 2024

Is washing soda eco-friendly?

It's more caustic, so caution is advised for environmental impact.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

How should I handle washing soda safely?

Use gloves and avoid direct skin contact.
Janet White
Jan 21, 2024

Does baking soda have a shelf life?

It can lose potency over time, especially if exposed to moisture.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024

Is washing soda effective in unclogging drains?

Yes, it can help clear clogged drains.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024

Are there any health risks with baking soda?

Overuse can disrupt pH balance, but it's generally safe.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024

Can I use baking soda for skin care?

Yes, but with caution, as it can be drying.
Harlon Moss
Jan 21, 2024

Can washing soda be used in dishwashers?

Yes, it can boost cleaning in dishwashers.
Aimie Carlson
Jan 21, 2024
About Author
Written by
Sumera Saeed
Sumera is an experienced content writer and editor with a niche in comparative analysis. At Diffeence Wiki, she crafts clear and unbiased comparisons to guide readers in making informed decisions. With a dedication to thorough research and quality, Sumera's work stands out in the digital realm. Off the clock, she enjoys reading and exploring diverse cultures.
Edited by
Huma Saeed
Huma is a renowned researcher acclaimed for her innovative work in Difference Wiki. Her dedication has led to key breakthroughs, establishing her prominence in academia. Her contributions continually inspire and guide her field.

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