April 28, 2011

Homemade Dishwasher Detergent

There are some scary ingredients in
*regular* dishwasher detergents.

For awhile now I have been using
a more natural alternative.
BUT...it is prohibitively expensive!

And...now that I am making more
messes in the kitchen
than ever before ~
and running the dishwasher at least twice a day ~
I needed to find a more frugal solution while
maintaining my requirement that it be *healthier*
than the *regular* stuff.

Here is the solution I came up with ~
Homemade Dishwasher Detergent.
(Click on the link provided to find the recipe)

And, click here to find
Citric Acid for purchase.

Does anyone know if I've been led
down the garden trail here?
Is this stuff really better for you?
I can tell you for certain that it is cheaper!

MUCH cheaper!

One thing to note ~
It seems to *clump* after a few days...
so, you may want to just make a small batch.

If you use too much for your machine,
it seems to leave a little film on the glasses.

Ask me how I know.

Make sure you use vinegar in
the rinse aid dispenser and
turn the dial to release the largest amount
per wash load.

And, of course,
Do NOT do this! ;-)

If you give it a try,
please let me know what you think!
And, if you have any suggestions
or answers to my questions...
please share! :)

Next up on my *to try* list...
Homemade TOOTHPASTE!! :)


Nadine said...

Hello Camille,

I tried making some dishwasher detergent a long time ago (we no longer have our dishwasher, just the kids!), but it didn't work very well. It always left a film on our glasses. I hope this one works for you, detergent is so expensive! We make our own laundry detergent, cleaner, deoderant, and I have thought about the toothpaste too!


Chelle said...

I have never made it, but I think I might try. My dishwasher isn't working right now. I will be getting a new one when we get the kitchen redone. I got a recipe for toothpaste and it was baking soda and peppermint oil. Is that the one you have. I would like to know. I sell Natures sunshine so I get natural toothpaste from there, but home made may be cheaper. Let me know how it turns out.

Michelle said...

I'm actually ready to try homemade dish detergent! Thanks for the post...another recipe to add to my "to try" list!

Cheesemakin' Mamma said...

Yeah! I like your recipe even better than mine. Thanks for providing the link to the citric acid. So far all the citric acid I've found has been really expensive. So I will check this out.

My homemade dishwasher detergent leaves a slight film on my glasses, too. The vinegar helps a lot. In fact, I'm not sure if it is a film or etching going on, but they definitely look cloudy. Other than that, it cleans very well and it is healthier for you. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

Wanting What I Have said...

I made the very same recipe, but used unsweetened lemonaid koolaid for the citric acid. I also used vinegar in the rinse aid dispenser. I could NOT get rid of the film. My black handled spatulas, etc all had a white film on them and our plates and cups seems to have a film on them, too. We used 1 tbs. Maybe straight up citric acid makes the difference? Not sure, but I'd given up. Perhaps I'll give it one last shot. :)

Lady Farmer said...

Hi Camille~
I tried using homemade dishwasher detergent and was very dissatisfied with it. My dishes got a milky film that only came off after several washings in Mrs. Meyer's or Method dwd. I had really hoped it would work, and it did get the dishes clean, but I didn't like that build up. So back to eco-friendly store bought. :~{
Most everyone that I have heard of that has made their own, goes back to the store bought stuff. If I was really trying to reduce cost, I would forget the dishwasher and just do them by hand BUT washing dishes is my least favorite task. It ranks right up there with dusting ~ I can't stand that oily feel on my hands! :~O
I make my own laundry detergent (liquid and powdered) and figure I am reducing cost there by a lot ~ hopefully it evens out in the end!
Oh, yes! Homemade toothpaste! I have wanted to try that, too! Can hardly wait to see your recipe for that! ;~P

GratefulPrayerThankfulHeart said...

Hello Camille,

So nice stopping by to visit with you! I have perused many of your posts to get to know you and your dear family a bit and enjoyed each one.

Thank you for stopping by my place and leaving your comment!

Kindly, Lorraine

Camille said...

Dear Nadine ~ Thank you for the input my friend! What a blessing you have your children to help you out with dishes. I've done a few months here and there without dishwasher, but I must say, I much prefer to have one in use! Well done to make a go of it without! Yes, the film...I'm working on that....

Dear Chelle ~ How wonderful that you are renovating...what a blessing! About the toothpaste...it definitely is cheaper! I am still researching which one to try. :)

Dear Michelle ~ It's super easy...I hope it works for you! I am still trying to solve the *film* issue. Vinegar to rinse seems to be a necessary thing.

Dear Jackie ~ I agree...the film is annoying. I have alternated with my expensive stuff once every ten loads or so to clear it off. But, can it be good for you if it leaves a film...just wondering about that??

Dear Jennifer ~ Yes, I agree...that film!! I may end up going back to my *old* ways too...but, I really want to try to make this work! :)

Dear Raeann ~ Good for you to do all those homemade things for your home! I may end up going back to the eco friendly stuff too...we shall see. About the toothpaste...I'm just in the research stage...I'll plan to post when I have something worthwhile to share. :)

Welcome Lorraine ~ How lovely to have *met* you....thank you for taking the time to visit here. I enjoyed your beautiful photos...so pretty. Your recipes look very yummy and creative. :)

Many blessings,

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

HI Camille,

thanks for the recipe. I tried making my own dishwasher powder awhile ago. I wasn't happy with the spots it left on my glasses. So I went back to a co mmercial eco-friendly powder. However, I'm ready to try it again. In general, I think homemade and/or eco-friendly are better. The regular liquid dish soaps and powders do leave a residue on you r dishes. I can't speak for anyone else, but I can almost taste it, so don't use it. So I go out from the fact that they will all leave some sort of reside, even if it's so minute that it's not harmful. I'd rather be safe :) :) I like the idea of using unsweetened lemonade packets. I'm really curious to find out what your results are with the homemade toothpaste!!! Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

Hopes Handcrafts said...

My kids and I are our "dish-washer" here. I hope you find a recipe that works, Camille.

blessings from Julia (NZ)

Heather said...

I love the sounds of this! Please let me know how it works!

Kristin Bridgman said...

I just found out how to make my own laundry soap but had not ever seen a dishwasher soap recipe. I am really interested in your toothpaste recipe. My grandmother never bought toothpaste. She always made a paste with just water and soda. AND she had the prettiest, strongest teeth and never went to a dentist!

Dragonfly Damsel said...

Camille--thanks!! I determined to go chemical free last year and have managed to switch a large number of things. Since most of these ingredients are also in my laundry soap, this works well for me, thanks for sharing!! We can get citric acid in bulk at our health food store.

Camille said...

Dear Heather in Oregon ~ Stay tuned for the toothpaste...I will share if I find a recipe I like. :) And, I agree...spots/film are not nice...makes me think something is on the dishes...not what we want! I am wondering if a Sea Salt would be better than the table salt I used. I think I will try that next time I make it. :)

Dear Julia ~ There is something to be said for the old-fashioned ways, don't you think? Thanks for cheering from the sidelines. :)

Dear Heather in Canada ~ I am about 90% satisfied. It cleans well...except for really baked on stuff. One thing that does bother me is that there seems to be a slight film on the glasses...but not every time. Using only 1 Tbsp per load and vinegar for the rinse cycle seems to be doing the trick. :)

Dear Kristin ~ I don't have a toothpaste recipe as yet...but I am hunting one down. I will post if it meets with our approval. :)

Dear Dragonfly Damsel ~ I hope it works for you! Isn't it great to go *chemical free*? Something *pioneer girl* about it...don't you think? (Although, there is nothing *pioneer girl* about using a dishwasher)...LOL! :)

Many blessings,

Trisha said...

I love my homemade dishwasher detergent. It's just equal amounts of baking soda and borax. That's it, and it works really well for us. We do have a softener system, though, because normally our water is very hard. So, I'm sure that makes a difference.

Love you dear friend!

Camille said...

Dear Trisha ~ That's interesting...what a simple recipe! Baking soda...not washing soda? That's even better! I'll have to give it a try. Thank you so much for your input here my friend! Have a wonderful day!


The Adventures of a Simple Life said...

I have a friend who tried this and didn't care for the film on the dishes, so I have not tried it. I am interested in the toothpaste recipe! Looking forward to seeing the recipe! Hope it tastes good!;)

Have a blessed day!

Camille said...

Dear Christine ~ I'm tweaking and figuring this out...I think it depends on the hardness of your water and how much you use and how hot your water is...and how good your machine is! (Oh, that was a mouthful! LOL!) The toothpaste...not tasting too good at the moment...LOL! I'll be sure to share when I figure that one out (IF I do!).

Many blessings,

Lois said...

I hate my dishwasher. I have used liquids, powders, biodegradable, commercial, etc. The soap never dissolves completely, there are particles of scale, soap in the bottom of the dishwasher. I've tried vinegar. I talked to an appliance salesman. He said it could be the water pressure (ours is very low), temperature, and since our house was built in the 50's and the dw installed later, that the plumbing drain, if it has to drain uphill, will wash back down into the bottom. It made sense to me. Now I handwash my dishes, and use the dishwasher as a drainer! LOL. I'm sorry for my run-on sentences. Sometimes I use the machine when my dirty piles exceed my counter space. I think the Prov. 31 woman had a few household servants to keep on top of the dishes. Yes, I have my kids do them occasionally, but I'm faster!

Camille said...

Dear Lois ~ Oh what a journey you have had with your dishwasher!! LOL!! I agree...handwashing seems to be the way to go in your home! And yes, children are a GREAT help in these tasks...what a blessing!! :)

Many blessings to you!

Heather@Cultivated Lives said...

What a completely fascinating post. I've never heard of making your own, but I'm so fed-up with the dishwasher right now since it leaves a film on everything and oftentimes doesn't even remove food. I periodically wash all of my dishes in a vinager bath just to get rid of the residue.

I can't imagine the residue getting much worse, so I might just give this a try. We've been taking baby steps in reducing the amount of chemicals in our home too.

And I love Lois's idea to use the dishwasher as a drying rack. I've been on the lookout for a new one so it will be easier for my children to help with dishes. Maybe we'll give this a try and save ourselves the hassle of buying a rack. Our sink is on the kitchen island in plain view of the entire living area, so I like the idea of dishes being out of sight!!! :)

I'm looking forward to your toothpaste. Keep us updated on how it progresses with your dishwasher soap.

Camille said...

Dear Heather @ Cultivated ~ Hmmm...well, I still use this...but I do use the eco-friendly stuff once in awhile to freshen up the glasses. I don't like the film and even though these are *natural* products it still bothers me. The toothpaste is *in the works*...we shall see how it all pans out. Thanks for your interest...I hope some of it will be helpful. :)

Have a great weekend!