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Ammonia vs. Cloudy Ammonia — What's the Difference?

By Tayyaba Rehman — Published on January 11, 2024
Ammonia is a colorless gas with a pungent smell, used in various forms, while Cloudy Ammonia is a cleaning solution containing ammonia and soap, making it appear cloudy.
Ammonia vs. Cloudy Ammonia — What's the Difference?

Difference Between Ammonia and Cloudy Ammonia


Key Differences

Ammonia, chemically NH3, is a colorless gas with a characteristic pungent smell, used widely in household cleaners, fertilizers, and industrial applications. Cloudy Ammonia is a specific type of cleaning solution that contains diluted ammonia and additives like soap or detergent, which give it a cloudy appearance.
Pure ammonia is highly soluble in water and can be found in several forms including as a gas, in solution, or crystallized salts. Cloudy Ammonia, used primarily for cleaning, has added components that increase its effectiveness for removing grease and grime.
Ammonia in its various forms is known for its strong odor and effectiveness in cleaning and as a fertilizer. Cloudy Ammonia combines the cleaning power of ammonia with soap, making it more suitable for domestic cleaning tasks like washing windows or floors.
The concentration of ammonia in Cloudy Ammonia solutions is typically lower than in commercial or industrial ammonia solutions, making it safer for household use, though still requiring caution. Pure ammonia, especially in higher concentrations, can be more hazardous and is used in more controlled environments.
In summary, while ammonia refers to the compound NH3 in its various forms, Cloudy Ammonia is a specific type of household cleaning product that contains ammonia diluted with additives, particularly soap, which causes its cloudy appearance.

Comparison Chart


NH3 (ammonia) in gas or solution form.
Ammonia mixed with soap or detergents.


Colorless and clear.
Cloudy due to added cleaning agents.


Cleaning, fertilizers, industrial applications.
Primarily used in household cleaning.


Varies, can be high in industrial forms.
Lower ammonia concentration for safety.

Additional Components

Pure ammonia or mixed with water.
Contains soap or detergents for effectiveness.

Compare with Definitions


Ammonia is a colorless gas with a strong, pungent odor.
The smell of ammonia is quite noticeable in many cleaning products.

Cloudy Ammonia

Cloudy Ammonia is a cleaning solution containing diluted ammonia and soap.
Cloudy Ammonia is effective for cleaning greasy surfaces.


Ammonia can be hazardous in high concentrations.
Industrial ammonia must be handled with care due to its toxicity.

Cloudy Ammonia

It has a lower concentration of ammonia than industrial solutions.
Cloudy Ammonia is safer for home use than concentrated ammonia.


It's a compound of nitrogen and hydrogen (NH3).
Ammonia is produced both naturally and through industrial processes.

Cloudy Ammonia

Combines the effectiveness of ammonia with soap.
Cloudy Ammonia removes dirt and grime effectively.


It's highly soluble in water and can form a clear solution.
Diluted ammonia is often used as a household cleaner.

Cloudy Ammonia

Used for domestic cleaning tasks.
I prefer using Cloudy Ammonia for washing the windows.


Ammonia is used widely in cleaning products and fertilizers.
We use ammonia-based solutions for cleaning tough stains.

Cloudy Ammonia

It appears cloudy due to the addition of cleaning agents.
The cloudy appearance is due to the soaps mixed with ammonia.


A colorless, pungent gas, NH3, extensively used to manufacture fertilizers and a wide variety of nitrogen-containing organic and inorganic chemicals. Ammonia is the chief nitrogen product excreted by fish and other aquatic animals.


See ammonium hydroxide.


(inorganic compound) A gaseous compound of hydrogen and nitrogen, NH3, with a pungent smell and taste.


A solution of this compound in water used domestically as a cleaning fluid.
Never use ammonia to clean metal writing pens.


A gaseous compound of hydrogen and nitrogen, NH3, with a pungent smell and taste: - often called volatile alkali, and spirits of hartshorn.


A pungent gas compounded of nitrogen and hydrogen (NH3)


A water solution of ammonia

Common Curiosities

What is Ammonia used for?

Ammonia is used in cleaning products, fertilizers, and various industrial applications.

Is Cloudy Ammonia safe for all surfaces?

Cloudy Ammonia is safe for many surfaces, but it should be tested on a small area first.

Can I make Cloudy Ammonia at home?

It's possible by mixing household ammonia with a small amount of detergent, but commercial products are more consistent and reliable.

Does Ammonia have a strong smell?

Yes, ammonia is known for its strong and pungent odor.

How should Cloudy Ammonia be stored?

Like all cleaning products, it should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from children and pets.

Can Ammonia be mixed with other cleaning agents?

Ammonia should not be mixed with bleach or certain other chemicals, as it can produce toxic gases.

How is Cloudy Ammonia different from regular ammonia?

Cloudy Ammonia contains added soap or detergents, making it cloudy and more suitable for household cleaning.

Can Ammonia be used as a fertilizer?

Yes, ammonia is a key ingredient in many nitrogen-based fertilizers.

What precautions should be taken when using Ammonia?

Use in a well-ventilated area, wear gloves, and avoid inhaling fumes.

Is Ammonia harmful to the environment?

Ammonia can be harmful if released in large quantities, but is generally safe when used responsibly.

Can Ammonia be used for cleaning windows?

Yes, diluted ammonia is excellent for cleaning windows and leaving a streak-free finish.

How does Ammonia affect indoor air quality?

High concentrations can irritate the respiratory system, so it's important to use it in well-ventilated areas.

Is Cloudy Ammonia more effective than plain ammonia?

Cloudy Ammonia can be more effective for certain cleaning tasks due to its added detergents.

Is Cloudy Ammonia suitable for laundry?

It can be used for laundry, especially for removing tough stains, but should be used cautiously.

Can I use Cloudy Ammonia on wooden surfaces?

It's generally not recommended for untreated wood, as it can damage the finish.

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Author Spotlight

Written by
Tayyaba Rehman
Tayyaba Rehman is a distinguished writer, currently serving as a primary contributor to As a researcher in semantics and etymology, Tayyaba's passion for the complexity of languages and their distinctions has found a perfect home on the platform. Tayyaba delves into the intricacies of language, distinguishing between commonly confused words and phrases, thereby providing clarity for readers worldwide.

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