Talk:Ammonium chloride

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Use in cough medicines[edit]

" cough medicine flavoring to hide the taste of some medicines"

your joking! It tastes revolting. (think salty ammonia - mmm delicious). theresa knott 13:59, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Substances that need not be tasted themselves, when used in select combinations, produce flavors that are useful for medicine. The author is not joking. Perhaps you are : ) Sincerely, irismeister 19:09, 2004 Feb 13 (UTC)
No, I'm not joking. I've done a bit of digging around on the web and everything I've found says that ammonium chloride is an expectorant (sp?) rather than a flavouring masker. I'll ammend the article once I sort out my references. theresa knott 00:42, 14 Feb 2004 (UTC)
Looking forward... Sincerely, irismeister 14:29, 2004 Feb 14 (UTC)

Concerning Theresa's insistence on AND the Navy site: Alleged further evidence coming from a site describing pharmacognosia for the purposes of the Navy :-)

  • Ammonii Chloridum {ammonium chloride, sal ammoniac). White crystalline powder or fine granular crystals. Made chiefly from gas liquor by neutralising with hydrochloric acid and subliming. Used as a stimulant expectorant.
  • Dose, 0.2 to 05 gm. (3 to 8 grains).

Need not mess it up with pharmacopoea. Also as explained in talk page, NOBODY prescribes irritating POWDER to someone already COUGHING unless malevolent, joking or sadistic :-) Please read the Merck Manual, page 599, lines 4 through 49 of the 16th - second most current printed edition and most circulated, valued and corrected medical text currently available. The implication that NH4Cl is used as peripherally acting demulcents is at best POV, at worst medical misinformation. :

  • other traditional expectorants (eg. ammonnium chloride etc.) are found in numerous OTC cough remedies. Their efficacy is doubtful, particularly in the dosages of most preparations.'

therefore, perhaps more serious medical judgment is mandated before cutting and pasting indiscriminately from obscure, misleading POV-commercial promotion web pages quoted as evidence. If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly and redistributed at will, then do not submit it. . That's all I have to say here. Happy editing :O) - irismeister 13:34, 2004 Feb 23 (UTC)

Concerning "Used as a stimulant expectorant." NH4Cl is used in order to promote the EXCRETION of stimulants. It does so by acidifying the urine which helps to trap basic (pH around 9.9) amphetamines in the urine in an ionic form. qidexan 10:48, 2006, Jan 29 (EST)

Concerning Theresa's insistance on cutting the alleged french "fluidify" as an alleged non-medical use, and the ergative, non-agglutinant use of derivation in English: Verb: to fluidify Entry: dissolve Function: verb Definition: melt Synonyms: deliquesce, diffuse, fluidify, flux, fuse, liquefy, liquesce, render, run, soften, thaw, waste away Antonyms: coagulate, congeal, harden, solidify, thicken Concept: physical change If you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly and redistributed at will, then do not submit it. . That's all I have to say here. Happy editing :O) -

Concerning Theresa's insistance on It is a promotional site selling bizarre, barbaric stuff for allegedly increasing expectoration made in Malaysia and non FDA endorsed. Need to cut out POVs or reference to promotional sites advertising dangerous OTC drugs. Also, if you do not want your writing to be edited mercilessly and redistributed at will, then do not submit it. That's all I have to say here. Happy editing :O) - irismeister 14:22, 2004 Feb 23 (UTC)

Concerning Theresa's reversion of my medical observation: Medical help, if NOT specialized, only LOSES PRECIOUS TIME. Not reverting to previous edit, therefore, IS DANGEROUS. Every country caring for the life of people has a poison center. Let us not deceive the brave care givers everywhere! Diverting victims of accidental ingestion of toxic stuff to time-losing spurious medical care could spell the difference between life and death. Ingestion of toxic stuff is a medical emergency. Happy editing - irismeister 17:16, 2004 Feb 23 (UTC)

I've ammended the safety data to fit with the references on the bottom of the page. theresa knott 17:22, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Maintaining that to inhale a powder of dubious value if you are a patient who coughs and has irritated bronchi would lead to therapeutical expectoration might be technically correct, but is equivalent to the methods of Mengele. As repeated politely [1] we need to cut out POVs or reference to promotional sites advertising dangerous OTC drugs! - irismeister 22:25, 2004 Feb 26 (UTC)

Note for anyone reading this page. As you can see in the article and in the talk above, no one except irismeister is talking about inhaling powder. Expectorants are dissolved in water and drunk. theresa knott 22:39, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

  • It would also seem he lacks an understanding of Mengele's atrocities, which were not equivalent of "allegedly ineffective nostrums". - Zotz 22:48, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
    • It wouldn't surprise me in the least bit if irismeister was fully aware of Mengele's atrocities. The truth of the matter is that irismeister's hatetred of me is so great that he will say anything in order to argue with me. He follows me everywhere I go in order to try to intimidate me. He has no knowlege of ammonium chloride, he had no interest in this article until I edited it. theresa knott 22:58, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
      • Have you considered adopting a temporary "nom de plume"? Perhaps it will make editing more pleasant if he doesn't know who you are... just a thought. - Zotz 23:05, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)
        • Yes I have, but Irismeister is being investigated by the arbitration commitee at the moment. So I'm happy for him to incriminate himself for the time being. Besides sock puppet accounts are sometimes frowned apon theresa knott 23:14, 26 Feb 2004 (UTC)

"N'importe quoi !!!" THIS conversation is an insult and a personal attack, so please stop it! If you care to take ammonium chloride powder just to increase your expectoration (DON'T - it'll harm you !!!), you'll understand. I couldn't possibly HATE ANYONE - let alone poor disinformants, but I HATE LIES. Happy editing - irismeister 23:18, 2004 Feb 26 (UTC)

I think the point is not "should ammonium chloride be used as an expectorant?", but "is/has it been used as an expectorant?". According to a Google search for "ammonium.chloride expectorant", the answer to the latter question appears to be clearly "yes". The answer to the first question is the subject of the controversy here. -- The Anome 10:32, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Here's one opinion: according to the Minnesota Poison Control System [2]:

"Expectorants are used to facilitate the elimination of mucous and other respiratory debris. They have little efficacy and have very little toxicity. Guaifenesin is the major expectorant in this category. Terpin hydrate and ammonium chloride have been used historically, but are uncommon now."

-- The Anome 10:36, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

I am currently inhaling a "line" of powdered ammonium chloride through a straw (mixed with common salt, liquorice aniseed and other ingredients). Not through the nose though, but into my mouth. This is a traditional pastime among Finnish children, and even some semi-adult folk like me. Just as a data-point. -- Cimon Avaro on a pogostick 11:18, Feb 27, 2004 (UTC)

It doesn't sound too appetizing to my English tastes.Still no worse I suppose than our acid drops, or cough drops (I wonder what they were made of). As a I child I uses to suck up sherbert through a liquorice straw. MMmmm sherbert, I haven't tasted it in years. theresa knott 13:55, 27 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Common as candy more places than Finland[edit]

This is a subject dear to my heart (who doesn't love eating ammonium chloride?!? :-) ).

While Finland is perhaps the largest exporter of ammonium chloride based candy (thanks to Fazer), ammonium chloride is widespread in candy all over Scandinavia, and I believe (but have not personally confirmed) it to be sold in at least parts of Germany and the Netherlands as well.

The most well known brands internationally might be Turkish Pepper (Fazer) - a "shell of boiled ammonium chloride, salt and sugar containing a powder of the same -, and Salmiakki (Fazer) - small "pills" of pressed ammonium chloride, liquorice and salt, but a huge number of other types are manufactured both by large manufacturers like Fazer-Cloetta and Haribo.

As a kid in Norway I grew up consuming vast quantities of the stuff - usually I'd spent at least half my allowance on various "salty" candies.

They vary from just powdered ammonium chloride combined with one or more of sugar, salt and liquorice, via chewy liquorice products with added ammonium chloride and salt, through hard boiled shells of ammonium chloride with one or more of the earlier mentioned ingredients with or without variations of the powder. Often there are small amounts of other stuff in it as well.

Most of the same countries where ammonium chloride in candy is popular also consume a lot of extremely sour candies and confectionary...

From experience, though, don't try to introduce English people to it without preparing them for the taste in advance - I've yet to find a single one here in London that have appreciated the experience...


Glöm inte glass med lakritssmak :) 22:49, 17 February 2007 (UTC)
Which translates to don't forget licorice-flavored icecream. True; popular in at least Sweden, since at least the 1990s, or whenever GB introduced Lakritspucken. JöG (talk) 10:29, 10 January 2009 (UTC)

4 alchemical spirits?[edit]

The only place on the net that lists this is this article, and its derivatives. The other three are not named anywhere.
-- ~ender 2005-03-18 12:15:MST

I am tagging that statement requesting citation. Also, what did the Arabs use ammonia for? Does anyone know? Asd28 19:16, 27 October 2007 (UTC)


Hey why is this article acting like this is poison. It tastes good and I only agree with that "wash your eyes" stuff. This is used as candy and I have even made it in school (and ate it ofc). "Induce vomiting. If victim is conscious and alert, give 2-4 cupfuls of milk or water.Seek medical help" <- total crap. It is strong as pure but not dangerous.

  • That is standard MSDS language. They have that on sodium chloride. That is just first aid measures. LoyalSoldier 23:07, 10 April 2007 (UTC)

Actually, it's not totally safe either, as overdose is possible. Ammonium chloride can cause higher blood pressures (my mom's a doctor and once pointed ammonium chloride candy out for the cause of a patients hightened blood pressure). Also, when given to children that grows, it can make their bones become weaker. Check out this page, though it's about ammonium chloride in pet foods, but I believe it's the same in humans About the blood pressure thing, I can't find an article about that, but I will post it here if I do. It's certainly worth mentioning I think.

~HardcoreWizard 19:49, 9 July 2006 (UTC)

The part about its toxicity must have been written by a Briton or an American. Consumed in moderation (not more than about 20 g in one go), even pure ammonium chloride is perfectly safe. Yet the article makes it sound like this is cyanide. I eat salmiakki candy almost daily and have always remained conscious, am I doing something wrong? JIP | Talk 09:32, 20 February 2007 (UTC)

  • If it decomposes then it is very toxic. Otherwise it is only as toxic as the ammonium ion. LoyalSoldier 17:25, 31 March 2007 (UTC)
  • Ammonium chloride dissolves into an ammonium ion and a chloride ion. Its solubility is not that different from sodium chloride (29.7g/100g versus 35.9g/100ml). In the acidic conditions of the stomach the ammonium stays ionized and isn't absorbed into the body, but in the basic conditions of the small intestine it turns into hydrophobic, easily absorbable ammonia - a toxic substance. Why, then, is ammonium chloride not toxic? What am I missing here? - Quirk 10:13, 11 May 2007 (UTC)
Oxlaic Acid is toxic, but if you eat rhubarb you eat something that is toxic. Moderation is the key here. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by LoyalSoldier (talkcontribs) 07:27, 13 May 2007 (UTC).

"In history" – Citation requested for following passage[edit]

Reaction check[edit]

(Lines temporarily remove from main page till reaction is clarified)

"It is used in manufacturing ammonium perchlorate (NH4ClO4):

NaClO4 + NH4Cl → NH4ClO4 + NaCl"

The reaction listed for making Ammonium Perchlorate needs to be checked because that reaction can not happen on its own. Either it needs more information or needs to be corrected. Both salts are soluble, only one ion is a weak acid or base, and nothing else is indicated. The two solids will not react in solution or other states. So unless a distillation or something like that occurs, this reaction isn't possible. LoyalSoldier 17:35, 31 March 2007 (UTC)

Ammonium perchlorate is less soluble than ammonium chloride, sodium chloride, and sodium perchlorate; therefore it is possible to precipitate it out of the solution. I don't know whether it is true that it is manufactured that way, though. --Itub 16:21, 24 April 2007 (UTC)
See that is the kind of information I am talking about. That makes more sense. LoyalSoldier 07:08, 13 May 2007 (UTC)

Ammonium Chloride[edit]

Does anybody have any information on the use of ammonium chloride as a nutritive medium for yeast?Digs80236 05:41, 2 August 2007 (UTC)


I removed the line:

It is the active ingredient in many antiperspirants, usually aerosols.

I am pretty sure the author was confusing ammonium chloride with aluminium chloride. Asd28 19:12, 27 October 2007 (UTC)

Sublimation point and boiling point??[edit]

I removed the boiling point from the table. Can't boil after it sublimes! —Preceding unsigned comment added by Shniken1 (talkcontribs) 23:04, 29 November 2007 (UTC)

WikiProject Food and drink Tagging[edit]

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"Ammonium chloride (NH4Cl) (also Sal Ammoniac, salmiac, nushadir salt, zalmiak, sal armagnac, sal armoniac, salmiakki, salmiak and salt armoniack)"

At least some of these are obvious foreign translations, like salmiakki (finnish). Actually, it seems that "salmiakki" *is* used in english, but rather refers to salty liquorice, as does "salmiak" according to the article on salty liquorice, to which in fact both salmiakki, salmiak and zalmiak are redirected. Salmiac, on the other hand, is redirected to ammonium chloride. I take this to be sufficient grounds for me removing salmiakki, salmiak and zalmiak from this list.Beryllium-9 (talk) 07:14, 27 February 2009 (UTC)

Ice packs[edit]

Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't ammonium chloride used in instant ice packs? How come these aren't mentioned in the article? Zootboy (talk) 01:22, 1 April 2009 (UTC)

Yes, ammonium chloride is used in instant ice or instant cold packs. An experiment published in the year 1666 by Frigorifick, recorded in the Royal Society journal gives detail about using Sal Ammoniac (archaic name of ammonium chloride) to produce cold. Here is a link to the article:

I really like that link you've provided. I've added it to the article as a citation. Barney Stratford (talk) 10:38, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

Doesn't sublimate?[edit]

I'm finding it difficult to find any reputable sources stating that NH4Cl does not sublimate, but dissolves into two compounds. The source we have cited now states "Ammonium chloride sublimes readily and in the process dissociates ... reversing its formation reaction to form NH3 and HCl" this doesn't say to me that NH4Cl doesn't sublime, but dissociates after the sublimation. -- (talk) 20:36, 2 May 2012 (UTC)

Fair warning[edit]

I find it difficult to believe the claim in the "Other applications" section that ammonium chloride can be used for disinfection. I'll leave it in the article for another month to give whoever made the claim time to back it up with a good citation. If it's still lacking a citation on the 10th July then I intend to remove it.

Note that I'm not saying that the claim is wrong or rubbish, just that I need to see objective evidence before I'll feel comfortable leaving it in an encyclopaedia article.

I've done some Googling around, and have found that quaternary ammonium compounds are indeed used as disinfectants[1], but have found no references to ammonium chloride.

Barney Stratford (talk) 10:27, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

These articles often contain urban folktales, hippy science, and other hearsay. Wikipedia relies on editors like you to point out these issues. It is often a good idea to just remove suspect content since the anecdotes are not of major significance.--Smokefoot (talk) 12:56, 10 June 2015 (UTC)

Thanks, Smokefoot. I think I'll leave it a few days for the sake of fairness, and then remove it. The original author can always revert my removal if he wants. Barney Stratford (talk) 20:52, 11 June 2015 (UTC)

Medical use for methamphetamine overdose[edit]

Mention could be made to the (controversial) use as urine pH lowering agent in methamphetamine overdose. Lowered pH favors the protonated form of this drug, which is less readily reabsorbed by the renal tubules. I may add it later. --Lucasdealmeidasm (talk) 18:17, 16 April 2016 (UTC)

Use as diuretic?[edit]

It is used in Aqua-ban. Aqua-ban "eliminates excess body water".

I will put this in at some point. (talk) 19:16, 30 September 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^  Missing or empty |title= (help); External link in |website= (help);