Introduction: Surface Tension Science Experiments With Common Houshold Items

About: Professionally I have been a summer camp counselor, a Draftsman/designer, salesperson, bicycle mechanic, laminate flooring machine mechanic, teacher, and designer of the OP Loftbed. Personally I am a human tha…

I will show you how to do a few science experiments, using common household items, to see surface tension on water in action.

Step 1: Materials

You will need some water, a bowl or bucket, some pepper (fine not coarse), a needle, a paper towel, a bread clip, some coins, and some liquid soap. You might also want to add some food coloring to the water.

Step 2: The Experiments

Start by filling your bowl or bucket up with some water. Next try the classic surface tension experiment of floating a sewing needle on top of the water. To make it easier, place a small piece of the paper towel on the water first, and then place the needle on the paper towel. The paper towel should sink to the bottom and leave the needle floating on the surface. Try touching the needle, What happens? Try putting a drop of liquid soap in the water. Now try putting a drop of liquid soap on the needle.

Sprinkle some pepper on the water. Touch your finger on the surface of the water. Now put some soap on your finger and then touch the surface of the water with your soapy finger.

Then make a "bpat" by floating the bread clip on the surface. Carefully drop a drop of soap into the hole of the bread clip.

Try combinations of the experiments.

Step 3: What Went Wrong?

We could not get the coins to float. The surface tension was not strong enough. But not all experiments go as planned and that is part of science, trying.

Step 4: What Was Cool?

The bread clip boat with the food coloring and pepper looked cool and the underwater footage turned out pretty nice.

Step 5: The Video

I made a video of all the experiments we tried and even got some underwater footage looking up.

As always,

Thanks for watching and enjoy.


Explore Science Contest 2017

Participated in the
Explore Science Contest 2017