# CHClO Lewis structure

CHClO has one carbon atom, one hydrogen atom, one chlorine atom, and one oxygen atom.

In CHClO Lewis structure, there is one double bond and two single bonds around the carbon atom, with one oxygen atom, one hydrogen atom, and one chlorine atom attached to it. The chlorine atom has three lone pairs, and the oxygen atom has two lone pairs.

Contents

## Steps

Use these steps to correctly draw the CHClO Lewis structure:

#1 First draw a rough sketch
#2 Mark lone pairs on the atoms
#3 Calculate and mark formal charges on the atoms, if required
#4 Convert lone pairs of the atoms, and minimize formal charges
#5 Repeat step 4 if needed, until all charges are minimized, to get a stable Lewis structure

Let’s discuss each step in more detail.

### #1 First draw a rough sketch

• First, determine the total number of valence electrons

In the periodic table, carbon lies in group 14, hydrogen lies in group 1, chlorine lies in group 17, and oxygen lies in group 16.

Hence, carbon has four valence electrons, hydrogen has one valence electron, chlorine has seven valence electrons, and oxygen has six valence electrons.

Since CHClO has one carbon atom, one hydrogen atom, one chlorine atom, and one oxygen atom, so…

Valence electrons of one carbon atom = 4 × 1 = 4
Valence electrons of one hydrogen atom = 1 × 1 = 1
Valence electrons of one chlorine atom = 7 × 1 = 7
Valence electrons of one oxygen atom = 6 × 1 = 6

And the total valence electrons = 4 + 1 + 7 + 6 = 18

• Second, find the total electron pairs

We have a total of 18 valence electrons. And when we divide this value by two, we get the value of total electron pairs.

Total electron pairs = total valence electrons ÷ 2

So the total electron pairs = 18 ÷ 2 = 9

• Third, determine the central atom

Here hydrogen can not be the central atom. Because the central atom is bonded with at least two other atoms, and hydrogen has only one electron in its last shell, so it can not make more than one bond.

Now we have to choose the central atom from carbon, chlorine, and oxygen. Place the least electronegative atom at the center.

Since carbon is less electronegative than chlorine and oxygen, assume that the central atom is carbon.

Therefore, place carbon in the center and hydrogen, chlorine, and oxygen on either side.

• And finally, draw the rough sketch

### #2 Mark lone pairs on the atoms

Here, we have a total of 9 electron pairs. And three bonds are already marked. So we have to only mark the remaining six electron pairs as lone pairs on the sketch.

Also remember that hydrogen is a period 1 element, so it can not keep more than 2 electrons in its last shell. Both (carbon and oxygen) are the period 2 elements, so they can not keep more than 8 electrons in their last shell. And chlorine is a period 3 element, so it can keep more than 8 electrons in its last shell.

Always start to mark the lone pairs from outside atoms. Here, the outside atoms are hydrogen, oxygen, and chlorine. But no need to mark on hydrogen, because hydrogen already has two electrons.

So for oxygen and chlorine, there are three lone pairs, and for carbon, there is zero lone pair because all six electron pairs are over.

Mark the lone pairs on the sketch as follows:

### #3 Calculate and mark formal charges on the atoms, if required

Use the following formula to calculate the formal charges on atoms:

Formal charge = valence electrons – nonbonding electrons – ½ bonding electrons

For carbon atom, formal charge = 4 – 0 – ½ (6) = +1

For hydrogen atom, formal charge = 1 – 0 – ½ (2) = 0

For chlorine atom, formal charge = 7 – 6 – ½ (2) = 0

For oxygen atom, formal charge = 6 – 6 – ½ (2) = -1

Here, both carbon and oxygen atoms have charges, so mark them on the sketch as follows:

The above structure is not a stable Lewis structure because both carbon and oxygen atoms have charges. Therefore, reduce the charges (as below) by converting lone pairs to bonds.

### #4 Convert lone pairs of the atoms, and minimize formal charges

Convert a lone pair of the oxygen atom to make a new C — O bond with the carbon atom as follows:

In the above structure, you can see that the central atom (carbon) forms an octet. The outside atoms (oxygen and chlorine) also form an octet, and hydrogen forms a duet. Hence, the octet rule and duet rule are satisfied.

Also, the above structure is more stable than the previous structures. Therefore, this structure is the stable Lewis structure of CHClO.