Monday, May 28, 2012

Homemade Dish Washer Detergent

Hello Everyone!

Sorry for my sabbatical, life has been so crazy! My DH got a new job, we bought a house, and got a new puppy! Needless to say those three things have been filling my life to the max, along with a full time job and the fact that my husband now travels Monday through Thursday.

I had to quit being a Close to My Heart consultant because things got so crazy! Although, I LOVE to scrapbook, CTMH is just not feasible right now. I do meet once to twice a month with some Stampin' Up ladies, which I absolutely love right now! It's nice to have some girl time once in a while!

Because I am no longer a CTMH consultant, I want to change my blog (just a tad!). Although the name will not change, the contents will! Since my DH and I just bought a house, I've been into DIY things lately! I will be sharing things that I am DIYing in my life on my blog! I will also put some scrapbook things in here as well, but I'm just so excited about my garage sale items, my homemade things, my storage ideas, etc. that I want to share them with you! I am also really into Pinterest.com which is where I'm getting most of my ideas from!

With that said, let me begin with my first new blog post!

Homemade Dish Washer Detergent

The house that my DH and I bought has a septic system and cannot handle a lot of the cleaners we used to use in our apartment. (My septic system is a Hoot system. http://www.hootsystems.com/ is their site and they have a great page about what you should and should not put down your septic system.)

I used to use the Finish Powerball Dishwasher Tablets, which I absolutely loved. And they weren't TOO expensive. (60 count is $12 on Amazon) Since I could not find on the package where it said they were septic safe and because I had seen multiple recipes on Pinterest.com, I decided to make my own. I looked a many recipes and came up with the simplest and cheapest one! :)  (Because I like simple!)  All the ingredients are natural and safe for septic systems. Here are the ingredients:

Equal Parts Washing Soda and Borax
1/2 as much Lemi-Shine
Fill up your "Rinsing Agent" space with Vinegar (Your dishwasher will NOT smell like vinegar when you use this.)

Add 1-2 Tablespoons each wash. I normally do about 2 Tablespoons. 

For example:
1 cup Washing Soda
1 cup Borax
1/2 cup Lemi-Shine
(This is all I made the first time. I made it about a month ago and do 3 to 4 loads a week and I still have about a cup and a half left.)

I only made a little of this at a time because it does clump up. I'm not sure why. (It might be the Lema-Shine. Next time I make this, I am not going to put the Lemi-Shine it in until I put it in my dishwasher.) 

Also, make sure to put vinegar into your rinsing agent spot. Most recipes I found used lemon flavored Kool-Aid as well to help with rinsing, but I decided to use vinegar because I didn't want the Kool-Aid to stain anything. And I read that it could also stain your dishwasher (I would imagine that this would only be if you had a white dishwasher). I have a Kenmoore Elite dishwasher, which you can see below. I will also say that I do the HE wash cycle and I do not use the heated dry setting. 

I will also tell you that I rinse most of my dishes after I use them, so there is not dry food on them. I also read a lot of recipes that included Epsom salt in them, which I would imagine might help with dried on food. I did not put salt in my recipe because I wanted it to be cheaper, simpler, and I did not have a need for it.

I hope you all try this! It is way cheaper than buying the Powerball tablets that I used to buy.

Okay, so here comes the math. Bare with me!! :) The cost of breakdown is:

Borax: 76 oz- $3.40 (One cup is which is 36 cents)
Washing Soda: 55 oz- $3.30 (One cup is 48 cents)
Lemi-Shine: 12 oz- $3.66 (1/2 cup is $1.22)
Vinegar: 1 gal- $2.56 (I am not sure how much each dishwasher takes, I would imagine this is probably 25 cents each fill. But one fill of mine is probably 20 loads. So the cost of this is probably 5 cents.)
Total Cost: $12.92/ Each batch is $2.11

Since each batch is 2 and a half cups and 16 Tablespoons are in each cup, that means that there is about 40 Tablespoons in each batch. Depending on if you use 1 Tablespoon or 2 Tablespoons, the cost per load is different.

1 Tablespoon per load cost is: 5 cents
2 Tablespoons per load cost is: 11 cents

The Finish Powerball cost per load is 20 cents. So, you can see your saving between 50% and 75% depending on how many Tablespoons your using. (And this is not even counting a rinsing agent, such as JetDry!!)

I hope you all try this recipe! It works so well and it's safe for septic systems and good for the planet!

Good luck! :) (And may the odds forever be in your favor!)