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Why Do Soda Cans Pop in the Freezer?

Why Does a Soda Can Pop in the Freezer?

Did you ever place a can of soda in the freezer as a quick way to make it cold? But then you got caught up doing something else, and by the time you remembered the soda, you discovered it had exploded in the freezer, leaving you without a cool, refreshing drink?

This has likely happened to most of us at one point or another, making us wonder why soda cans explode when placed in a freezer. Well if you’re wondering the same thing, let’s see what our friends at eHow have to say about this topic!

Blame it on the Water

Most substances contract (get smaller) when they are cooled. Water, however, behaves differently and expands (gets bigger) as it cools and freezes. The force of the water’s expansion is strong enough to burst most containers, including bottles and cans! 

Soda and Water

If you were to look at the ingredients on a can of soda, you'd find that it contains a large amount of water (in fact, soda is made up of almost all water). Since water expands when cooled, the liquid in a can of soda will expand when frozen. 

Soda cans are designed to hold a specific volume of liquid. When placed in the freezer, the water in the soda expands inside the can, and the volume becomes greater than what the can was designed to hold. 

This pressure causes the can to become strained and to eventually POP when left in the freezer for too long - leaving you with a messy surprise to clean up in your freezer!

Looking for more Never Stop Asking "Why?" questions? Catch up on all of the past "Why's" on the blog!