Friday, May 6, 2011

Homemade Dishwashing Detergent

My first attempt at going green in this area was to buy dishwashing detergent in powder form, in the cardboard box. My first mistake was buying "Cascade". Not only did I nearly pass out each time I opened the box because of the fumes, it did a crummy job of washing my dishes. Next, I tried Seventh Generation. It worked fine with no fumes but it did leave a cloudy residue. But...what if I took it a step further and made my own?

Since my homemade laundry detergent worked so well, I took the ingredients I already had from that experiment and made my own dishwashing detergent. According to Matt Jabs at diy Natural, the citric acid in this recipe helps with the cloudiness that is sometimes left on glasses. Combined with white vinegar as the rinse agent, my dishes came out sparkly clean! Even though the citric acid is a little pricy, the recipe comes out to $0.07 per load, which is half the price of name brand detergents!

Homemade Dishwashing Detergent

● 1 cup borax ($2.99/box at Target)

● 1 cup washing soda ($5.99/box at Ace Hardware)

● 1/2 cup citric acid powder ($28 for 5lbs at Amazon or check your bulk aisle)

● 1/2 cup kosher salt

Mix ingredients together and use 1 tablespoon per load. This detergent will clump together because of the citric acid but it doesn't affect the product in any way.

Fill rinse agent compartment with white vinegar.

I also want to make a note that the biggest motivation in making my own cleaning products is not saving money at all. That part is nice, but I love that I can clean with natural ingredients and keep my family safe from toxins as well as reduce waste.

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