Corrosiveness of Soda Experiment

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In this experiment, we will be investigating the corrosiveness of soda. If you are one of those people who can't last a day without drinking soda, read on.

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Corrosiveness of Soda, Daniel Oines

You are probably already aware of the bad effects of drinking too much soda but seeing the effects of soda first hand will probably be enough to convince you that the bad effects you have been hearing about are all actually true.

One of the negative effects of too much soda, relative to our experiment, is its effect to our tooth enamel. In this activity, you will not only discover the extent of the corrosiveness of soda but also which type of soda is the most corrosive.

Quiz 1 Quiz 2 Quiz 3 All Quizzes


To perform this activity, make sure you have all of the following materials:

  • 1 small bottle each of Coca Cola, Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Sprite, Mountain Dew and Distilled water
  • 6 plastic cups
  • 6 tarnished pennies
  • Notepad
  • Measuring cup
  • Marker for creating cup labels

This experiment is expected to take about one week before you get to see and assess the results. The longer it takes, the clearer the results will be.


Take all the 6 plastic cups and label each using the marker. Assign one cup for each drink - one for Coca Cola, one for Pepsi, one for Dr. Pepper, one for Sprite, one for Mountain Dew and the last one for the distilled water. Pour each liquid into the designated cup and drop one tarnished penny for each labelled cup.

Observe what happens to each penny each day. Take note and record these observations in your notepad. You may pick the penny out of the cup to look at them closely but make sure you return them back inside after observing.

When noting your observations, try to observe whether the darker coloured sodas remove the tarnish from the pennies faster than the lighter-coloured ones. Also take note if the lighter coloured sodas change colour as they remove the tarnish. Do not forget to compare these observations to that of the penny soaked in the distilled water. Continue doing this for a week and assess the trend if there is any.


You must have noticed, as days passed by, that the darker-coloured sodas removed the tarnish from the coins quicker than the lighter coloured ones. This means that the darker-coloured sodas are stronger and are more corrosive compared to the lighter colour sodas.

The American Dental Association or the ADA has warned people that too much soda could damage their teeth particularly their tooth enamel. This Corrosiveness of Soda experiment only proves and supports ADA's position on the said issue. So before you drink another bottle of soda, think again. You do not have to completely shun sodas from your diet. Just consume in moderation and this will save you from weakening your teeth or worse!

Full reference: 

Explorable.com (Aug 17, 2011). Corrosiveness of Soda Experiment. Retrieved Jul 24, 2024 from Explorable.com: https://explorable.com/corrosiveness-of-soda-experiment

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