Does Tapping A Soda Can Really Keep It From Foaming Over?

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Have you ever picked up an ice cold can of soda only to find it exploding all over you after you opened it? Not only has this happened to me, it happens all the time. I have heard from numerous people that tapping the side of a soda can before opening will stop the soda from foaming all over. It turns out tapping a soda can to keep it from foaming over is a false claim, which I have learned from experience.

One of the main principles of scientific thinking that can be applied to this false claim is replicability. Maybe one person tapped a can of soda after shaking it up only to find that it wasn't exploding all over them. Though one person may have found this technique to work, it is necessary for other people to find similar results. Speaking from experience, I still had soda squirting all over me even after tapping the side of the can. The scientific thinking principle of correlation isn't causation can also be applied to this claim. Maybe there is a third variable that is keeping the soda from exploding in in some peoples' faces. For example, maybe someone tapped the can and then set it down for while before opening it. Maybe the process of letting it sit for awhile was actually what was keeping the soda from foaming over.

Though many people believe that tapping the side of a soda can will stop the soda from foaming over, it just isn't true. In reality, the best way to keep a can of soda from exploding all over you is just by letting it sit for awhile.

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This page contains a single entry by riem0056 published on November 17, 2011 1:25 PM.

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