washing up

iPhone 365 Project 70: Everything But The Kitchen Sink
image via Manoian

So, I hate doing dishes. Even the pretty teacups. Twice a week I pack our dishwasher to capacity so very few things will need handwashing by moi. But non-toxic cleaners are expensive & sold in small quantities. So I'm on the hunt for a simple homemade dishwasher-powder recipe & am thinking the following might do the trick.

Dry Ingredients
  • 1 cup borax (disinfectant & base)
  • 1 cup washing soda or 1.5 cups baking soda (water softener & base)
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt (catalyst to speed up & intensify chem rxns)
  • 1/4 cup citric acid (water softener & acid, natural antimicrobial & germicidal)
  • each load, fill rinse agent compartment with white vinegar
Yield & usage
  • each batch yields app. 20 oz of resulting product (keep very dry)
  • 1 Tbsp per load will suffice, though you may need to alter proportions depending on your water type (untreated well water vs. city water)
  • if you find a film on the dishes, use less (2 tsp) & consider turning up the threshold on your hot water heater. the key to a clean rinse is often water temp (also handy for cloth diaper wash)
  • Can add 3 drops essential oil or few drops liquid detergent per load
Note: I source these ingredients in bulk, usually via Costco. It's much more affordable per load than any box, even if you source in smaller quantities from the grocery store. Also, the citric acid is what makes the powder clump but it also eliminates a film on the dishes.


Kelly said...

I hope you find one that works. It tried the borax and baking soda and got very poor results.s

© 2008-2010 Megan Clinch said...

from what i've read, washing soda is more alkaline than baking soda so you need to change the ratio when using baking soda (use more) & the salt is pretty crucial apparently. i'm sure it also depends on how hard your water is. we'll see!

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