Abstract Broadcasting is a technique widely used for distributing control packets in ad hoc networks. The traditional flooding scheme has been proven to unnecessarily consume network capacity and may lead to severe packet collisions in high-density networks. New schemes have been proposed for alleviating this so-called broadcast storm problem and their efficiencies are usually analyzed and compared by ns-2 simulations. However, little work has been done on mathematical modeling and rigorous analysis. In this paper, we focus on two popular ad hoc broadcasting schemes and provide their detailed analysis in one-dimensional and two-dimensional ideal networks. The statistical results obtained have revealed new relationships between network parameters and the performance metrics. These results are useful for optimally setting network parameters in designing protocols. It is also expected that the analytical methods developed will lay a solid foundation for the development of mathematical models for other ad hoc broadcast and multicast schemes.