Difference Between Ionic Compounds and Covalent Compounds (With Table)

A chemical substance is formed by a composition of many identical molecules. This is known as Chemical Compound. The atoms that form the molecules are held by chemical bonds.

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  1. Simple
  2. Giant

It is strange to note, the giant Covalent Compounds may exhibit high melting and boiling point too. This behaviour is majorly attributed to the high intermolecular attraction. The best example for a Giant Covalent Compound is Diamond and Granite. Otherwise, Covalent Compounds are weaker than the Ionic Compounds because of their bond.

Main Differences Between Ionic Compounds and Covalent Compounds

  1. The main difference between the Ionic and Covalent Compounds is the methodology of formation. One of the atoms in the bond shall lose an electron to initiate the bond to form an ionic compound while the Covalent compound is formed by sharing the electrons among the atoms.
  2. The Ionic Compounds exist in the solid-state while Covalent Compounds exist in Solid, Liquid and Gaseous state.
  3. Ionic Compounds mostly are soluble in water while the Covalent Compounds are not.
  4. Ionic Compounds have very high boiling as well as melting points, while the Covalent Compounds have low melting and boiling points
  5. The Ionic compounds conduct electricity in the molten as well as an aqueous solution while the covalent compound does not conduct electricity.



Understanding the Compounds is one way of gaining knowledge. But the knowledge must go beyond learning the differences between these two. The Ionic compounds are available in the toothpaste we use daily. The water we drink is a covalent compound. Many cooking and washing agents are ionic compounds.

Understanding the real-life usage offers greater knowledge than knowing the technical aspect of it. Knowing the useful and hazardous substances which we call it as Ionic or Covalent gives greater knowledge. Carbon dioxide is a covalent compound, that is widely used in soft drinks that we drink. It is good to apply the learning and there lies the knowledge. Establishing the differences between these two has given a wider approach towards the products we use daily.


  1. https://aip.scitation.org/doi/abs/10.1063/1.2956594
  2. http://www.lifesci.sussex.ac.uk/research/fluorine/p5qsp3l/Teaching/chem_533/MLX.pdf