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Is Ammonia Safe for Cleaning?

Is Ammonia Safe for Cleaning?

Q: Iíve been trying to track down a recipe I remember for cleaning the house using vinegar, water, ammonia and baking soda. Do you know it? óMichelle, Canada

A: I never recommend using ammonia.

* When ammonia is combined with bleach highly toxic gases are released, which can be fatal.

* Ammonia also is poisonous, a suspected mutagen, corrosive, and explosive when exposed to flame!

* It is highly irritating fume to the eyes, nose, and lungs.

* As for the combination of ingredients you list, acidic vinegar will neutralize the highly alkaline ammonia and baking soda, making them all worthless for cleaning.

Check out the many cleaning recipes in the Healthy Home section of Healthy Living!

Read more: Home, Health & Safety

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Annie B. Bond

Annie is a renowned expert in non-toxic and green living. She was named one of the top 20 environmental leaders by Body and Soul Magazine and "the foremost expert on green living." - Body & Soul Magazine, 2009. Learn Annie's latest eco-friendly news on anniebbond.com, a website dedicated to healthy and green living.

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20 comments

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10:58PM PDT on Jun 17, 2013

Ammonia is commonly used in household cleaning supplies and is technically called as ammonium hydroxide. It is useful for cleaning glass, surface, jewelry cleaning solutions and can also be used as disinfectant aerosol sprays. http://www.whatisall.com/housing-and-garden/is-ammonia-a-safe-cleaning-agent.html

3:08AM PDT on May 12, 2013

Useful link on Wikipedia with all kinds of information relating to Ammonia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ammonia

6:48PM PDT on Apr 1, 2013

I'm allergic to it

7:21PM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

It always amazes me as to how much I take my General Chemistry Class for granted. Whenever I see someone mixing an acid and a base and expecting stellar cleaning results.

FYI. in chemistry class, baking soda is kept on hand for emergency acid spills or contact. Acid(vinegar) and bases(ammonia, Hydroxides,and bakingsoda)= neutral, harmless, ineffective for cleaning, pH.

4:20AM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

I never use ammonia.

3:56AM PDT on Mar 27, 2013

If we know the right way

7:24AM PST on Feb 13, 2013

I never could understand why people use ammonia. It takes your breath away and the smell is overwhelming.

5:36AM PDT on Aug 31, 2012

thanks

7:44AM PDT on May 8, 2012

Thank you for sharing.

7:30PM PST on Nov 20, 2011

While commercial ammonia cleaning products are pretty safe, I would not recommend mixing ammonia with anything that could lower its pH, such as baking soda. This could have the same poisonous effect as mixing with bleach. To be safe, I just wouldn't mix it with anything.

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