Polar vs Non-Polar Covalent Bonds & Molecules

A polar bond is a covalent bond in which the electrons that form the bond are inequally distributed between two atoms. While a non-polar bond is a covalent bond in which electrons that form the bond are equally distributed between two atoms. Electronegativity determines whether a bond is polar or non-polar.

The tendency of an atom or a functional group to attract electrons toward itself is known as Electronegativity.

Polar and Non-Polar Covalent Bonds

Polar bond and non-polar bond

Polar covalent bond

polar bond is a covalent bond in which the electrons that form the bond are inequally distributed between two atoms. 
  • Electrons spend more time on one side of the bond in a polar bond.
  • They are intermediate between ionic bonds and pure covalent bonds.
  • A polar covalent bond is formed when the electronegativity differences of cation and anion are between 0.4 and 1.7.
  • They are formed between two nonmetal atoms that have different electronegativity. 
  • There is a dipole moment between the atoms.

Non-polar covalent bond

non-polar bond is a covalent bond in which electrons that form the bond are equally distributed between two atoms.

  • In non-polar bonds, the difference in electronegativity is mostly negligible.
  • They are formed between two nonmetal atoms that have identical electronegativity. 
  • There is no dipole moment between the atoms.
  • When atoms that share a polar bond arrange themselves in such a way that electric charges tend to cancel each other out, a Non-polar covalent bond can be formed. 

Difference between Polar and Non-polar covalent bonds (Polar vs Non-polar)




Physical State

Polar covalent compounds can exist in solid forms because of the greater force of interactions.

They are mainly found in gas form. Some non-polar compounds can be found in liquid form.

They are soft in nature.

Melting Point

They have higher melting points than non-polar covalent bonds.

They have a very low melting point because they don’t have any polarity.

Boiling Point

They have a higher boiling point than non-polar covalent compounds.

They have a very low boiling point.


They conduct electricity while they are in the solution state. It is due to the mobility of ions.

They don’t conduct electricity as they are insulators


They are highly soluble in polar solvents like water.

They are less soluble in water but are soluble in nonpolar solvents like CCL4, CHCL3,   etc.

Polar Molecules

A molecule that has a slightly positive molecule on one end and a slightly negative molecule on the other end is known as a Polar molecule.
  • They orient themselves in the presence of an electric field with a positive end of the molecule, that is attracted to the negative plate. While the negative end of the molecule is attracted to the positive plate.
  • They can have polar covalent bonds or ionic bonds.
  • Polar molecules affect the properties of polar compounds like water. They tend to stick together and line up in groups.

Examples of Polar Molecules

Some examples of polar molecules are:
  • Hydrofluoric Acid (HF)
  • Water (H2O)
  • Acetone  
  • Sulphur dioxide (SO2)
  • Ammonia (NH3)
  • Carbon monoxide (CO)  
  • Ethanol (C2H5OH)
  • Methanol (CH3OH)
  • Hydrogen Sulphide (H2S)
  • Chloromethane (CH3Cl)
  • Ozone  (O3)
  • Phosphorus trichloride (PCL3)

Non-Polar Molecules

The molecule in which there are no negative and positive charges are called non-polar molecules.
  • Charges in non-polar molecules are equally distributed across molecules.
  • They are generally symmetrical, like tetrahedral molecules.
  • They are insoluble in water but dissolve in nonpolar solvents.
Examples of Non-Polar Molecules
  • Carbon dioxide (Co2)
  • Hydrochloric acid (HCL)
  • Benzene (C6H6)
  • Methane (CH4)
  • Carbon tetrachloride (CCL4)
  • Boron trifluoride (BF3)
  • Hexane (C6H14)
  • Nitrogen (N2)
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