Here are 7 uses around your home for washing laundry and cleaning with ammonia.
Household ammonia has been a cleaning staple in homes for years, and with good reason. It's an effective general purpose cleaner that works well for removing baked on grime, and provides a non-streak shine.
In addition, it works wonders in the laundry, for general washing and stain removal.
To help you use this staple cleaning ingredient to its fullest below are 7 ways to use ammonia in your home for cleaning and laundry.
Ammonia is an alkaline cleaner, and as explained in more detail in my article about what the pH of various cleaners means, alkaline cleaners are very effective for cutting through grease, as well as organic substances like household dirt.
In addition, by the very nature of its chemistry, alkaline cleaners like ammonia also neutralize acidic cleaners, such as vinegar.
Therefore, be very suspicious of any cleaning recipes you see that combine ammonia and vinegar, because since one is acidic (vinegar) and the other is alkaline (ammonia) they effectively cancel each other out, meaning you are actually making it more difficult to clean when they're combined.
(You can see a similar phenomenon at play with another alkaline, or basic cleaner, baking soda, is combined in a cleaning recipe, with vinegar, which often neutralizes both ingredients making neither one of them as useful. For more details, check out my article about why you should be suspicious of cleaning recipes that contain both baking aoda and vinegar.)
Further, and more importantly, when discussing mixing ammonia with various other cleaners, never mix ammonia with chlorine bleach. The combination of these two ingredients produces toxic fumes. You can read more about the chemical reaction between bleach and ammonia here.
Ammonia is such an effective cleaning agent because it's a strong alkaline substance.
Because it's so strong, household ammonia already comes diluted in between a 5-10% concentration, typically, but for many uses it still needs to be diluted even more.
Finally, unless otherwise mentioned, the ammonia I'm referring to throughout this article is also known as clear ammonia, or household ammonia, and not sudsing ammonia.
Sudsing ammonia is just clear or household ammonia that has had soap added to it. While this can be handy in some situations, I suggest purchasing the non-sudsing variety of ammonia and, when necessary, adding your own soap, because sometimes the added soap is not useful for some of the uses suggested below.
So without further ado, here are some of the ways you can use this product around your home, for cleaning and in your laundry.
One of the best uses for ammonia is to clean an electric oven.
To do this heat your oven to approximately 150 degree Fahrenheit and then turn it off. Then, place a small bowl containing 1/2 cup of ammonia on the top shelf and on the bottom shelf place a large pot of boiling water. Then, close the oven door and let it all sit overnight.
The next morning all of the baked on grease and grime will be loosened right up. Once you've removed the bowl and pot you can begin the task of scrubbing your oven, once the oven has aired out for a while (it's best to do this when you can circulate some air into your kitchen).
Scrub using a sponge or cloth you don't mind throwing away afterward, dipped periodically in a quart of warm water, a few drops of dish soap, and some more ammonia.
You can get more tips for cleaning your oven here.
If you've got discolored stains on your concrete you can remove them with a mixture of 1 cup of ammonia diluted in a gallon of water.
Pour onto the discolored concrete, scrub well, and then rinse off completely with a hose afterward.
You can get more tips for cleaning and stain removal from concrete here.
Ammonia is a common ingredient in glass cleaners for a reason. It works well for cleaning and doesn't tend to leave streaks on your glass since it evaporates quickly.
A simple recipe is one cup of ammonia diluted in 3 cups of water.
You can check out lots more homemade window cleaner recipes here.
Because ammonia is an alkaline substance it can be used as a laundry booster. It will help brighten laundry and also it's alkaline nature helps detergents perform better.
You can add 1/2 cup of household ammonia to the water, along with the detergent, before you add clothes into the washing machine.
You can check out more laundry uses for ammonia here.
Ammonia is also a great general laundry stain remover.
Here's a homemade laundry pretreater recipe that you can mix up and use on most stains:
Mix all the ingredients together into a spray bottle and use like you would any other laundry pretreater.
You can check out more homemade clothing stain removal recipes here.
How many times have you, or your child, accidentally dropped a pencil and made a mark on your clothes?
These pencil marks are surprisingly difficult to remove for something that is supposedly erasable. But ammonia to the rescue!
Add just a couple of drops of undiluted ammonia onto the marks and then rinse. Often the pencil marks are then gone!
(If you're concerned about the ammonia causing damage, make sure to test in an inconspicuous area first.)
You can get more tips for how to remove pencil marks from surfaces here.
Finally, ammonia can be removed to remove a large variety of carpet stains and spots.
Mix up a solution of 1 cup of ammonia and 1/2 gallon of water, and then lightly spray of sponge onto the stain. Once the stain is removed make sure to rinse thoroughly so the ammonia does not continue to work on the carpet, and then let dry thoroughly.
Always test first in an inconspicuous area to make sure the solution does not discolor your carpet fibers, and never use this solution on a wool carpet. Ammonia actually dissolves wool fibers!
You can get lots more carpet stain removal tips here, for a large variety of stains.
How do you use ammonia in your home? Have I missed any of your favorite uses? I'd love to hear about it in the comments below.
In addition, check out this article with even more ammonia uses around your home that have been rounded up from around the site.
Further, you can get even more homemade cleaning products recipes and instructions here.
Hi, I'm Taylor, a busy mom with 3 kids, so I have lots of hands on experience with house cleaning, laundry and my fair share of spots, spills and other messy catastrophes. Thanks for visiting my site.
I update the website all the time with tips, tutorials, cleaning recipes, reviews of products from readers like you, and tests I've done on various cleaners, removers and laundry supplies.
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CAUTION: This website is provided for informational purposes only. It is provided as is, without warranties or guarantees. Some stains and messes just won't come out, and are permanent. Further, some cleaning methods can harm your item, so if what you want to clean or launder is sentimental or expensive call a professional. See disclaimer of liability for more information.
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