Tag Archives: homemade dishwasher soap

Homemade Dishwasher Soap Recipe without Borax

I’ve tried this for about a week now and am pretty happy with the recipe.  I will admit my glassware is a little foggy looking but this is a fair trade off we have decided.  Everything else comes out clean and I know they have all been through a high heat rinse so that’s good enough for us.  I am sure they won’t meet my mom’s standard of shininess but oh well.  See my new update below.

I found that vinegar is a crucial part of the system, and since it can’t be added to the soap because it will turn it back into oil, it needs to be part of the rinse cycle.  Because I am too lazy to wait around until the dishwasher hits the rinse cycle I just put a few glugs into the bottom of the washer.  Also if you fill the rinse aid dispenser that will be released during the rinse cycle as well.  It’s not enough to do the job though, that’s why I add more.

As for the cleaning agents I decided to try my two part method that I developed for the laundry detergent.  First I add the liquid soap mix and then I pour in some of the powdered mix.  Think of it like those little packets of detergent that have soap on one side and powder on the other.

Liquid Soap Mixture:

1 part liquid castile soap

1 part water

I put this into an empty dishwasher soap container that I had on hand.

Powdered Mixture:

3 parts washing soda

1 part salt

Put into clean, dry jar.  Don’t waste a canning jar, use a jar that you can’t can with to be extra frugal.

For each load: Use 2 teaspoons dry mix, approximately 3 teaspoons liquid soap mix and a tiny squeeze of dish soap (my newest discovery, see update below).  Pour a glug of vinegar into the bottom of the dishwasher too.  The amounts don’t have to be exact just measure it once and then eyeball it after that.

Also, fill up the rinse aid with vinegar.  It only releases a small amount each load but it’s better than nothing.

If you find this isn’t working for your unique water requirements then just experiment.  I read an article that said less soap is better than more soap.  The soap is what causes the soap scum on the glasses.  So adding more won’t make matters better.  Try less soap, instead.  Maybe more dry mix would be a better option.  Hopefully you find something that works for your family.

Another thing to think about is that I have heard, not sure where, but that putting soap into the dishwasher is not advised.  Detergent is apparently different than soap.  I take this to mean, no dish soap, especially dish soap alone, but I thought I would mention it so you can decide for yourselves.

Update:  I have been using this dishwasher soap now for about 2 months and I think I have worked out some more of the kinks.  My discovery came with the addition of plain ol’ dish soap (I have some natural brand in a giant bottle from Costco).  I use the same amounts posted above but then I add a tiny squeeze of dishwasher soap into the dispenser.  It makes my glasses come out shiny now.  It’s perfect.  Several steps I admit but natural and nearly equal to the old stuff.

 

Thanks, Courtney

Borax Free Homemade Laundry and Dishwasher Soap

Well I just had a revelation this weekend (although Robert is claiming the idea as his own).  Why not make my own laundry soap and while I am at it make my own dishwasher soap too.  I remember seeing a recipe on Homestead Revival and so I hunted it down.  It looks super easy and at least half the cost of store bought products.

Here’s the basic recipe from the Homestead Revival.  Her recipe calls for Borax, Washing Soda and Zote soap.  I can’t stand perfumes so I started looking up other soaps to use.  While on that thread of research I can across some not so settling news about borax.  I read on EWG that borax is banned in cosmetic use for infant’s skin due to carcinogenic concerns.   Yikes.  While laundry and dishwasher soaps aren’t exactly cosmetics they do come in close contact with our skin and residue on dishes may even be ingested.  This didn’t sit very well with me so I started researching borax free recipes.

To my surprise there are plenty of recipes out there. EHow is the website I found that has several recipes for dishwasher detergent and laundry detergentUpdate:  Neither of these recipes work so please don’t try them at home.  Check out the disaster in my other post on dishwasher detergent.  I want to come up with my own recipe that replaces lemon with citric acid because I have heard that lemon juice or lemon scented detergents can be damaging to your dishes and glassware.  But these versions seem to be great alternatives to borax.  I think effectiveness will vary depending on water type and temperature of the water used.  So it may be up to the individual to find what recipe works best for their conditions.

I was curious if my current laundry soap, Charlie’s Soap has borax in it.  I even checked on my bottle of Charlie’s soap to see if they use borax and I emailed the company.  They say they use coconut based surfactants (Castile soap, I assume) and washing soda, no borax.  Hmmm.  That settles it for me.  No borax for us.

Please remember that this is research that I have collected on my own from a variety of sources.  I am not making any safety claims or endorsing any recipes, products or methods.  I am just trying to journal my thought process as I decide what I will use for my family.

Update:  Here is a link to the recipe for borax free dishwasher soap that I have been using.

And here’s the link to the recipe for borax free laundry soap too