Removing stains from wood

How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood

Mary Smith
By Mary Smith. Updated: August 31, 2020
How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood

Ammonia is a fabulous household cleaner, but unlike other cleaning products, it is natural and does not cause skin irritation nor does it damage materials - provided it is used correctly. The smell of ammonia is strong and sometimes overpowering, so many people cannot tolerate it, but if it is not your case, you can use it to clean wood surfaces in your home; it is perfect for them, as it does not damage them.

It should always be diluted in water so that it is not dangerous to human or animal health, as ammonia can irritate the mucous membranes. Moreover, it must always be used in ventilated areas. At OneHowTo we want to show you how to use ammonia to clean wood so you can have your furniture back in the best condition in no time at all.

You'll need:

  • Ammonia
  • Water
  • A bucket
  • A rag or cloth
  • Gloves
You may also be interested in: How to Clean Wood Blinds

Steps to follow:


Ammonia is a powerful disinfectant and cleaner, but it must be used properly so as not to provoke respiratory problems or irritations in humans. This is why you must always mix 1 part ammonia and 4 parts water.

This measure is completely effective for cleaning wood and it's harmless to human health. However, it has a pungent and strong odor, so you should take precautions when using ammonia. Avoid handling ammonia with bare hands. Although diluted ammonia does not usually cause irritation, people with sensitive or delicate skin may suffer contact dermatitis. You should not use the mixture of ammonia and water in tight, cramped, unventilated places, because it is an irritant with its strong and sometimes overpowering smell.

On OneHowTo we have some tips on how to use ammonia to clean.

How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood - Step 1

Ammonia is useful and safe to clean wood thoroughly, but some finishes such as paints or special varnishes can be damaged through the use of ammonia. To avoid problems with the furniture or wooden objects in your home, it is recommended that you first perform a test to check if the ammonia leads to discoloration.

Apply some product on a rag and then rub it on a hidden part of the piece of furniture to see if the ammonia changes the color. If so, you should use a gentle cleanser made for wood and finishing features of this calibre instead of ammonia.


To apply ammonia on a wooden surface, we must be careful; wood is delicate and exposure to excessive moisture should be avoided. Moisture can cause wood to acquire mold and change its structure, causing it to expand or deform.

Apply the mixture of ammonia and water through a cloth: wet the rag with it and drain it to avoid having excess moisture. Apply on the surface and rinse after wiping with a wet - thoroughly drained - cloth.

On OneHowTo you can discover 10 household uses for ammonia so you know all the ways that you can use this product and keep your home at its best.

How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood - Step 3

Your wood outdoors furniture, or that kept in closed rooms with high humidity, can easily become stained and moldy, which irreparably damages the piece. To solve the problem, you can turn to ammonia! Drench a cloth with less diluted ammonia and rub it vigorously on the parts where the mold has grown. Repeat until the rag appears clean. You'll see how the objects and furnishings regain their usual appearance and you can enjoy them once again, for a longer time.

In short, ammonia is powerful and effective for any wood surfaces, but it must be used properly to avoid problems. This is how to use ammonia to clean wood; if you have any tips, please tell us in the comments section.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood, we recommend you visit our Home cleaning category.

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will using a 1 part amonia + 4 parts water stop squirrels from biting into my pretreated lumber?
Any known ways you have stopped them?__________________________-
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How to Use Ammonia to Clean Wood