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What are Some Household Uses of Ammonia?

Ammonia, a potent cleaning agent, shines in household tasks. It effortlessly cuts through grime on glass, sanitizes surfaces, and even brightens laundry. Its high pH level makes it a go-to for stubborn stains. But remember, safety first—always use it in a well-ventilated area. Intrigued by ammonia's versatility? Discover how it can revolutionize your cleaning routine.
Diana Bocco
Diana Bocco

Ammonia is the number one ingredient in fertilizers and has also been used as rocket fuel, drinking water purifier, and industrial food processing additive. While that makes ammonia sound like a dangerous chemical to have around, the truth is that ammonia has been used around the household for decades. As long as it treated with caution and kept away from children and pets, ammonia can be a great addition to a household's cleaning supplies set.

Ammonia is great for eliminating stains and tarnish, and can be the ideal solution for hard-to-remove soap buildup in tubs, sinks, and bathroom tiles. It also works great to remove tarnish from silver or brass, and it can even clean gold jewelry where commercial cleaners have failed. In general, ammonia is good for cleaning anything that resist the use of other cleaners: clothing stains such as pen markings, perspiration, and blood; carpet stains such as red wine; and upholstery stains caused by pets and food or drinks.

Many bathroom cleaners contain ammonia.
Many bathroom cleaners contain ammonia.

Ammonia can stop mildew just as well as bleach without causing discoloration, and it can also repel moths, keep garbage cans odor-free, and eliminate paint odors. Ammonia is also a great oven cleaner. Simply place a bowl full of ammonia inside your oven overnight and then wipe it clean without effort the next day. Oven racks and pots and pans can be cleaned with ammonia to help them recover their silvery spark, although you may need to rewash kitchen utensils a few items after that just to make sure there are no traces of ammonia left. Ammonia can also be used in the garden to help alkaline flowers such as lilacs grow stronger and faster. By mixing ammonia with water, you have one of most powerful plant foods available for plants that prefer alkaline environments.

Ammonia should never be mixed with bleach and general home cleaning products, as the mix can produce toxic gases. When using ammonia around the house, make sure the rooms are well ventilated and avoid contact with your eyes.

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Discussion Comments


Can you use ammonia instead of petrol?


Ammonia is dangerous if applied directly to skin. It can kill you. Don't mix it with anything other than water; it is a powerful chemical.


Can ammonia be used to chase away bats, lizards and other pests?


I'm going to try ammonia to clean my stove grates tomorrow. I'll try 1/4 cup in a ziplock bag with one grate, sealed for a few hours. I'm hoping it works.


How can you use ammonia to eliminate dust mites?


Can ammonia be sprayed under my outside house crawl space at our trailer? I need to keep out rabbits and fruit bats.


Ammonia is great to deter racoons. I had one in my garage for three days. 15 minutes after putting a few baby food jars full of ammonia around, he was "Outta there"!


@anon250229: Thanks so much for the hint! I have the same issue, myself, and have been wondering what in the world to use to get the stuff off the tile. I've tried everything I could think of, but ammonia never crossed my mind. Thanks a bunch!


I had a tough hairspray buiildup on my bathroom floor. I mixed ammonia with hot water and was able to easily wipe away the buildup. No scrubbing needed!


I just used on part ammonia to two parts water to clean the inside of of my glass doors on our fireplace. The glass was so heavily soiled from wood fires that you couldn't even see through the glass. The solution cleaned it up instantly. I was amazed.


what is the correct amount of ammonia/water per parts for use on house plants


this was very useful. i got all my answers. God bless wise geek


This website was very helpful for my project.


I have a snail problem, and I heard you can use ammonia watered down. is this safe to use on my colorbond fence?


Reply to person having a smoker visiting them in their house: only allowed to use the bedroom? What? That smell of cigarette smoke is not only bad for others in the house, but that stink is ingrained into the bed linen, curtains, carpets and even the walls! How selfish is this smoker? Your house, say no! -- Mary


I used ammonia to clear a slow running bathtub drain. I used the typical clog removers and they worked for a few days. I used bleach which would give me about a week. I finally used ammonia and the drain has been fine for three weeks now.


I want to clean the inside of a woodburning fireplace. Is ammonia the answer to my search for a cleaner?


Does ammonia need to be watered down or used full strength for cleaning or for plants? And if you use it in the oven how much rinsing needs done?


For many people there is the problem of animals tearing into trash that has been left outside for pickup. I solved our problem by pouring a bit of

ammonia over the bags and can. Dogs etc. can't stand the odor and leave it alone. No more scattered stuff to pick up.


Many may already use ammonia for this, but we had trouble with dogs and other animals getting into the trash that we set out at night for garbage pickup in the morning.

After picking up scattered trash early one morning, I thought of the most potent smelling stuff I had in the house. I now pour ammonia on the trash the night before. No more problems with dogs or anything else!


You can buy smoker's candles that help with cigarette smoke. But probably something cheaper like ammonia would be better.


I use ammonia to clean and disinfect my home. I clean all my blinds with it and walls and bathroom as well as kitchen. It's very inexpensive and works great! T.B.


can ammonia be used to bleach skin?


I was told that you should clean aluminum with ammonia. Is that true?


Can household ammonia be used to kill mice in a barn? I was thinking of spraying it remotely and getting the hell out of there.


my question is: can we use ammonia and hydrogen peroxide for the removal of face hair


Mixing bleach and ammonia creates chlorine gas, an odorless toxin that can kill you. Never mix the two, and if you are mixing cleaning products, make sure you do not mix products containing the two.


what happens when you mix ammonia and bleach? explosions?


For smoking odors you can place a couple of vanilla soaked cotton balls around the home to absorb the scents, I place them in my old unused ashtrays around the room, just refresh them once a week.


I have a smoker visiting for the Christmas holidays. I only allow her to smoke in the bedroom or outside. But the smoke smell is terrible. My mother use to put out bowls of Ammonia when she had parties years ago. Does anyone have other ideas for cutting down on the smoke smell? And, I know I have to keep anything up high so no children can get it.


I once had an article from a magazine which gave a mixture of water and ammonia which you could use to sponge on to suits to remove or at least diminish the wear 'shine' on suits, but I've lost it can anyone help please?


Ammonia is great. It is so cheap and so effective! Make sure you don't mix it with bleach though, that would be really bad. I used to use much more expensive cleaners and now almost all i use is ammonia - it really is great stuff.

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    • Many bathroom cleaners contain ammonia.
      By: Tein
      Many bathroom cleaners contain ammonia.
    • Ammonia mixed with water can help alkaline plants like lilacs grow stronger and faster.
      By: ivan kmit
      Ammonia mixed with water can help alkaline plants like lilacs grow stronger and faster.
    • Ammonia.
      By: picsfive
    • Ammonia can be used to clean mildew.
      By: eugy
      Ammonia can be used to clean mildew.
    • Bleach should always be kept away from ammonia, as the two combined create toxic gases.
      By: design56
      Bleach should always be kept away from ammonia, as the two combined create toxic gases.