Why does hot water brew tea faster than cold water?


Such as if I pour cold water over my tea bags instead of hot water.

In: Physics

There are a few reasons.

First, the temperature of something is a measure of how fast the molecules in the material are moving. The faster the water molecules hit the tea bag, the more of them they can move around. This helps to actually spread the tea around the cup.

The second reason is that hot water dissolves other things better than cold water. This ends up being very much related to the speed of the molecules, but is slightly different for some chemical reasons (suspended versus dissolved particles).

You can brew coffee or tea with cold or room temperature water. You end up dissolving fewer compounds and it takes longer, so you have to wait and it tastes different, but it totally works.

When you put the tea in water the atoms have a place to go, so they move around and eventually make tea. When atoms are hot they move faster.