Types of Chemical Reactions


Types of chemical reactions are classified on the basis of the reactivity of chemicals under different conditions of reactions. There are at least thousands of chemical reactions that occur everywhere. Only five or six of those are categorised, and most importantly one reaction can fall into many categories depending on different parameters. For getting more information about any kind of products in these reactions, it is important to understand those reactions in detail.

What is a Chemical Reaction?

In simple words, a chemical reaction is a chemical change that occurs to the starting materials and ends with a different kind of product. It involves the motion of electrons and leads to the breaking of chemical bonds and the formation of new products.

Figure 1: Representation of chemical reaction

The term chemical reaction is defined as the process, where the bonds of reactants break and a new product creates new chemical bonds with the help of product molecules. In a chemical reaction, the molecule or the particle reacts is called the reactant and the result of that reaction is known as the products.

Two types of changes occur in a chemical reaction, these are as follows −

Physical changes in a Chemical reaction

In a chemical reaction, the physical properties of the reactants can change such as the size or the shape of the reactants can change. For example, when a candle melts it changes its physical form.

Chemical changes in a Chemical Reaction-

In a chemical reaction, the chemical property or characteristics of the reactant can change too. For example, the density, temperature or energy of the substance can change. This type of chemical change is visible in combustion, rusting or fermentation.

Properties of Chemical Reaction

There are some unique properties of chemical reaction and these are as follows −

  • In a chemical reaction, two or more reactants react and as a result, it forms new more than one product.

  • The two main basic things of a chemical reaction are the product and the reactant.

  • In a chemical reaction, the chemical change brings physical changes with it, such as, the change of colour.

  • The reaction occurs in between the atoms, ions or molecules and results in breaking to forming the new bonds. It can happen without destroying any of the atoms.

  • Many factors decide the rate of the reaction, such as, temperature, pressure, or the concentration of the reactants.

Chemical Equations

Chemical equation is defined as the mathematical representation of a chemical reaction. It shows the product formation and states the conditions, on which the chemical reactions are dependent.

In a chemical equation, the reactants stay on the left side and the final products on the right side and these elements are connected with the help of one or two-headed arrows.

Different Types of Chemical Reaction

There are many types of chemical reactions, and the most important are as follows −

Combination Reaction

The simplest form of a chemical reaction is the combination. In this type of chemical reaction, two or more compounds react and combine to form a completely new product.

For Example,


Figure 2: Types of chemical reaction

Combustion Reaction

This type of chemical reaction occurs between two reactants which are fuel and oxidant. The final product of this combustion reaction is oxidized.

For example, a chemical reaction between hydrocarbon (A) and oxygen

$$\mathrm{CH_4 (A)+2O_2\:\rightarrow\:2H_2O + CO_2}$$

Neutralization Reaction

This type of chemical reaction occurs in between the base and acid where the final products are salt and water. The water forms with the help of OH- and H+ ions.

$$\mathrm{Acid + Base\:\rightarrow\:Salt + Water}$$

Decomposition Reaction

In this type of reaction, one reactant breaks into more products and to complete the process it requires a certain amount of energy. The energy can be heat, electricity, or light.

$$\mathrm{AB\:\rightarrow\:A + B}$$

Redox Reaction

Redox reaction is also known as reduction and oxidation reaction. This process depends on the electron transfer, the reactant and the product either gains the electronic or losses. It has two types, oxidation and reduction. In oxidation, the reactant loose electron and in reduction it gains an electron.

Precipitation Reaction

In this type of chemical reaction, two solutions of salt are soluble and mixed which produces an insoluble solid.

$$\mathrm{A + Soluble\:salt\:B\:\rightarrow\:Precipitate + soluble\:salt\:C}$$


A chemical reaction is a change in the nature of reactants to form a completely new product. The alteration can be in many terms, it can be a change in temperature, colour or energy or it can indicate the change of state. The reactants react chemically to form the new product known as the chemical reaction.


Q1. What is the main cause behind chemical reactions?

Ans. The breaking of chemical bonds that occurs between reactant molecules or particles causes a chemical reaction. As a result of this chemical reaction, it forms a bond between the atom of the new product molecule or particle.

Q2. What is the importance of chemical reactions?

Ans. The chemical reaction can happen anywhere and to anything, even in living things, such as, in cells, animals, insects, and humans. It is important because it allows living things to evolve, grow, develop, adapt, and reproduce.

Q3. What is the main difference between the chemical reaction and chemical equation?

Ans. The major difference between the chemical reaction and the chemical equation is in their basic characteristics. The chemical reaction occurs between reactants to form a new product whereas the chemical equation helps to represent the chemical reaction with symbols.

Q4. What is a balanced chemical reaction?

Ans. Ans. The term balanced chemical reaction is used to represent those chemical reactions when both sides of the arrow in an equation, have an equal number of atoms.

Updated on: 17-Apr-2023


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