# balancing formula, can coefficient be fraction

#### joonkimdds

##### Senior Member
10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
If a questions asks for the coefficient of O2, is it 13/2 or 13 after balancing the cumbustion of butane?

C4H10 + (13/2) O2 --> 4 CO2 + 5 H2O

or

2 C4H10 + 13 O2 -->8 CO2+10 H2O

#### Tommy43087

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
I would stick with whole numbers because fractions will make things more complicating, even with something simple like summing up coeffecients, and even more so with other calculations.

#### Tommy43087

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Sorry i dont know if i answered your question, but i guess it depends on the answer choices whether its 13/2 or 13.

#### DaveyK

10+ Year Member
7+ Year Member
Sorry i dont know if i answered your question, but i guess it depends on the answer choices whether its 13/2 or 13.
Agreed. Either way is correct, so it would depend entirely on the answer choices provided.

#### UCB05

A balanced formula should have whole-number coefficients. This is important if you get a question that asks you to balance and give the sum of the coefficients.