Science, Tech, Math › Science Melting Point Vs. Freezing Point Melting point and freezing point aren't always the same Share Flipboard Email Print Atomic Imagery/Getty Images Science Chemistry Chemistry In Everyday Life Basics Chemical Laws Molecules Periodic Table Projects & Experiments Scientific Method Biochemistry Physical Chemistry Medical Chemistry Famous Chemists Activities for Kids Abbreviations & Acronyms Biology Physics Geology Astronomy Weather & Climate By Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Chemistry Expert Ph.D., Biomedical Sciences, University of Tennessee at Knoxville B.A., Physics and Mathematics, Hastings College Dr. Helmenstine holds a Ph.D. in biomedical sciences and is a science writer, educator, and consultant. She has taught science courses at the high school, college, and graduate levels. our editorial process Facebook Facebook Twitter Twitter Anne Marie Helmenstine, Ph.D. Updated February 11, 2019 You may think the melting point and freezing point of a substance occur at the same temperature. Sometimes they do, but sometimes they don't. The melting point of a solid is the temperature at which the vapor pressure of the liquid phase and the solid phase are equal and at equilibrium. If you increase the temperature, the solid will melt. If you decrease the temperature of a liquid past the same temperature, it may or may not freeze! This is supercooling and it occurs with many substances, including water. Unless there is a nucleus for crystallization, you can cool water well below its melting point and it won't turn to ice (freeze). You can demonstrate this effect by cooling very pure water in a freezer in a smooth container to as low as −42 degrees Celcius. Then if you disturb the water (shake it, pour it, or touch it), it will turn to ice as you watch. The freezing point of water and other liquids may be the same temperature as the melting point. It won't be higher, but it could easily be lower.