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This is What Happens If You Microwave Dish Soap!

Last Updated on November 23rd, 2022 - By Steve

You must’ve heard a thing or two about what happens to dish soap when it is placed in the microwave and then decided to try it out yourself. 

It is a safe experiment when you place your dish soap in the microwave, but you must be sure about what happens. 

Now that brings up the primary agenda, what happens when you place dish soap in the microwave? 

Dish soap expands when placed in the microwave. There is air, water, and gasses in these soaps, so when you put this soap in the microwave, these three elements heat up and start to expand into steam, and the volume grows, respectively. 

This article will let you know what dish soaps can be microwaved so you do not place a non-microwavable soap in the dishwasher. 

Can You Put Dish Soap in the Microwave?

What Happens if You Microwave Dish Soap

Yes, you can, either for an experiment or to clean the dishwasher. It is possible. Many people put their dish soap in the microwave to clean the microwave. 

When you put these dish soaps in the microwave, it flares up. Many people would consider this magic, but it is like a little physics. 

Many people have noticed their dish soap puffing up when they place them in the microwave, but only a few would care to know why. 

The puffing-up action of these dish soaps concerns Charles’s law. When you trap this soap in a microwave, there is a visible reaction from the water and gases trapped inside the soap. 

The microwave’s heating action would affect the air and water, turning these elements into steam and drying up the soap. 

To prove this, after taking your dish soap out of the microwave, feel it. The dish soap appears drier than before you placed it in the microwave. 

The reason is that this heat has acted upon the soap by drying it and resulting in increased soap mass. 

The Ivory Soap Experiment 

A perfect soap to use for this experiment is ivory soap. When you microwave the ivory soap, you will notice that it rises and forms a big, flaky mass. 

Before getting to know why this happens, it is essential to consider the constituents of this ivory soap. 

Generally, all soaps are made with ingredients like water, air, and glycerin in various proportions. 

What happens in the case of the ivory soap is that little more air is whipped into the mixture. The air in the ivory soap keeps it afloat in water.  

Ivory soap is the best for this experiment because you could see it float in water before placing it in the microwave, a clear sign of air. 

After placing it in the microwave, you will notice that the texture will change, and the soap will become flaky. 

What Would Happen If You Microwave Dish Soap? 

You would notice an apparent physical change when placing ivory or other dish soap into the microwave. 

Although no chemical change is recorded, you would notice that the form of the soap changes from solid to flaky

When you place dish soap in the microwave, the soap heats up and softens. 

Since the water in this soap dries up, the air tries to push itself out of the way and, in the process, makes the soap flaky. 

For whatever reason you’re placing the ivory soap in the microwave, ensure that you do not try it without adult supervision, and you should also not try it with any soap. 

The ivory soap is best for this experiment because it has a very high air content, which is why it works. 

Trying this with any other dish soap can make it smoke up or even ruin your microwave. 

What Soap Puffs Up in the Microwave? 

The ivory soap puffs up in the microwave. The experiment with the ivory soap is straightforward to perform and is mainly used for kids in preschool and kindergarten. 

In most of these preschools, these experiments are used by the teacher. Doing this helps the kids learn about this ivory soap’s texture and form before and after the change. 

For the experiment, you would need the following; 

  • Just a bar of ivory soap from the ivory brand. 
  • Microwave. 
  • Microwaveable plate. 

Procedure

  • Place a bar of ivory soap on a microwaveable plate and place it in the microwave. 
  • Set your microwave and let it get hot; leave for about 90 seconds. 
  • Within just a few seconds, you would notice that the soap would start puffing up like a cloud. 

After this experiment, let the plate cool down because it must be boiling.

When it cools off, it is entirely safe to touch and feel. The microwaved ivory soap also gives your entire kitchen a pleasant scent. 

Below are the reasons why ivory soaps are the best for this experiment; 

Ivory SoapRegular Soap
It contains a higher amount of air Contains fewer air
Floats in water Sinks when placed in water

How Do You Melt Dish Soap in a Liquid in the Microwave? 

There are several ways you can melt your dish soap and use it for various purposes. Melting your dish soap is handy when you need a proper substitute for liquid soap. 

Below are three simple processes you can follow when your melted soap is ready; 

Get Old Soap Scraps and Liquify Them 

You can also use a white soap bar, but if you want to be more economical, you should go for scraps. 

Get old bar soaps and shred them using a cheese grater. The idea is to reduce the soap’s size to smaller to reduce the melting time. This method would work perfectly. 

You should now get a pot and heat the pieces of the grated soap with just enough water. If you want to make body wash instead, you should use less water. 

Ensure that you heat under a low flame. After removing the soap from the fire, let it sit covered for about 12-24 hours, and voila, your liquid soap is ready. 

Place the Soap in a Microwave

Cut your soap into cube pieces and place them in microwaveable glassware; please ensure that you do not use plasticware as it might melt and cause significant damage to your microwave. 

Also, cover the real glassware in plastic wrap before placing the soap. The whole essence of covering the glassware up is to conserve heat. 

Once it starts melting or looks like it has melted, take it out and stir the soap to be sure. If you discover lumps, place the liquid soap in the microwave for another 30 seconds. 

Ensure that you only overheat the soap, so it keeps its integrity intact. 

Making Use of Boiling Water 

Like in the first procedure, make use of a cheese grater to reduce the size of the soap pieces.

Alternatively, you can use a potato peeler, which produces smaller pieces of soap. 

Place a good amount of water in your saucepan and bring the water to a boil. Place the shredded soap in a bowl and place the bowl in the water. 

If you use goat milk soap, you should add a little water to the shredded soap to loosen the bound particles. Ensure that you stir as time goes on to create a better texture. 

FAQs 

Can You Put Dish Soap in the Microwave? 

Yes, but you must ensure that you place it in a bowl that doesn’t stay in for more than a few seconds and must also be placed in a bowl. 

What Happens If You Accidentally Cook Dish Soap? 

If you accidentally cook and eat dish soap, it will be tough for your body to digest. It can lead to diarrhea and bloody stool. 

Is Dish Soap Very Toxic If Consumed? 

Yes, it is. Dish soap can cause severe injuries to you if you mistakenly swallow it. Some of these dish soaps can cause damage to the esophagus. 

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