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Monday, January 19, 2009

homemade laundry and dishwasher detergents

got this off a blog i read (see "Rebecca's Bargains" on the sidebar).

I was about to head to Walmart to buy more Dishwasher Detergent AND laundry detergent AND fabric softener today when i ran across these recipes, and thought to myself, WHY NOT? we're trying to slash the household budget and this can only help.

i'll come back later with a report on how it all worked and if they are a good deal. but for now, anyone up for trying it with me?

Homemade Detergents

Dishwasher Detergent:

Liquid Detergent

1 part baking soda
1 part borax
1 part water
1 drop lemon or orange essential oil per cup of detergent

Mix the ingredients thoroughly and store in a sealable jug. Use 2 to 3 TBS per load.

Powder Detergent

Mix equal parts of washing soda (or baking soda) and borax. Use 2 TBSP per load.
For extra cleaning power, you can add a few drops of regular (liquid) dishsoap to this.

Rinse Agent

White Vinegar. Seriously, just add it to the dispenser like you would any commercial rinse agent, and you’ll have clear, spot free dishes. You can use it with any detergent (even commercial ones, if you choose not to go the ‘make your own’ route)

Laundry Detergents:

TIPS FOR LAUNDRY SOAP: We use Fels-Naptha bar soap in the homemade soap recipes, but you can use Ivory, Sunlight, Kirk’s Hardwater Castile or Zote bars. Don’t use heavily perfumed soaps. We buy Fels-Naptha by the case from our local grocer or online. Washing Soda and Borax can normally be found on the laundry or cleaning aisle. Recipe cost approx. $2.

Homemade Liquid Laundry Soap- Front or top load machine- best value
4 Cups hot tap water
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar (can use any bar of soap here-Ivory, etc)
1 Cup Washing Soda
½ Cup Borax
- Grate bar of soap and add to saucepan with water. Stir continually over medium-low heat until soap dissolves and is melted.
-Fill a 5 gallon bucket half full of hot tap water. Add melted soap, washing soda and Borax. Stir well until all powder is dissolved. Fill bucket to top with more hot water. Stir, cover and let sit overnight to thicken.
-Stir and fill a used, clean, laundry soap dispenser half full with soap and then fill rest of way with water. Shake before each use. (will gel)
-Optional: You can add 10-15 drops of essential oil per 2 gallons. Add once soap has cooled. Ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil.
-Yield: Liquid soap recipe makes 10 gallons.
-Top Load Machine- 5/8 Cup per load (Approx. 180 loads)
-Front Load Machines- ¼ Cup per load (Approx. 640 loads)

Powdered Laundry Detergent- Top load machine
1 Fels-Naptha soap bar (or any bar of soap)
1 Cup Washing Soda
½ Cup Borax
-Grate soap or break into pieces and process in a food processor until powdered. Mix all ingredients. For light load, use 1 Tablespoon. For heavy or heavily soiled load, use 2 Tablespoons. Yields: 3 Cups detergent. (Approx. 40 loads)

Inexpensive Fabric Softener Recipes

Recipe #1

1 Cup White Vinegar

Add vinegar to rinse cycle. Works great. Removes residue and odors. Also helps to keep washing machine and hoses fresh and clean too.

Recipe #2

1 Container of Name Brand Fabric Softener
4 Inexpensive sponges, cut in half
Pour entire container of softener into a 5 gallon bucket. Fill empty softener container with water twice. (2 parts water to 1 part softener) Add sponges to softener/water mixture. When ready to use wring out extra mixture from one sponge and add to the dryer as you would a dryer sheet.



Blogger Hugh & Hollie Carson said...

Ohhh how I hope one of these works. I've tried EVERY-THING under the sun for dishwashing detergent and I always get a white film on the dishes and they never seem to come out clean. So, I end up going back to the Walmart brand of dishwashing detergent. let me know how it goes.

1/19/2009 2:37 PM  
Blogger The Hudgins said...

hols,have you used vinegar for the rinse agent as well? i thought this would get any spots off. gonna give them a go. i'll letcha know.

1/19/2009 2:59 PM  
Blogger Hugh & Hollie Carson said...

No, haven't used vinegar for the rinse agent. Let me know how you do it and the outcome.

p.s. I met your friend Tara on Sunday at church! She's very sweet and I look forward getting to know her. She was already hanging out with the fun singles group that we have at our church by the time we were leaving. Brandi and her are neighbors too. Can you believe that?

1/20/2009 8:13 AM  
Blogger Joni said...

Hey Tara,

I do half baking soda/half borax for dishwashing detergent and it works great for me. If we're having company over or something and I don't want any spots on the glasses, then I try to do a dishwasher load with normal stuff. I haven't had any luck with laundry - i still use Tide mostly. can't wait to hear if you have good results, i'm game to try new things!

1/20/2009 4:07 PM  
Blogger Jenny said...

I've not tried any of these, but I have a friend from seminary who makes all of her cleaning stuff. Take a look at her blog link from my blog. It's Travis and Stephanie. She has a book of some kind that she uses.

1/20/2009 6:43 PM  
Blogger Shelley said...

hmm, probably not! i love the smell of my GAIN and I have recently become a fan of OXY Clean in getting spots out of the kids clothes. but, as with all of your economical adventures, I say, more power to ya girlfriend! :)

1/24/2009 9:44 AM  
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