Wednesday, January 18, 2012

DIY Dishwasher Detergent

 I feel like I need to have a disclaimer here... I am by no means a clean freak or an expert house cleaner.  In fact there are definitely still crumbs from probably breakfast and lunch on my floor and if I'm really honest the serious cleaning around here only happens when I know someone is coming to visit and even then it's begrudgingly :)  So please do not think that with all these cleaning posts lately that I am one of those women who always has a spotless house.  My life, like most moms is crazy and chaotic and often times because the house can't scream or yell mama when it needs something (although it would probably like to :)  it doesn't always get the attention it needs or it at least gets put on the back burner to tackle another day.  But I am all for things that make life easier and save me some pennies.  Since I already had the Borax and Washing soda from making my DIY Liquid Laundry Detergent all I needed was the Lemishine or citric acid and a little salt to give dish washing detergent a try.
 DIY Dishwasher Detergent Recipe
1 cup Borax
1 cup washing soda
1/2 cup lemishine or citric acid (1 cup if you have hard water)
1/2 cup salt
Since I have hard water I used the full one cup of Lemishine, which I found at Walmart on the detergent aisle near the Borax. I used a gallon zip lock bag to mix all the ingredients and plan to just store it in that, but you could use any container you can seal tight.
Use one tablespoon per wash and you will be shocked at the results... at least I was.  It works great!  No more spending a huge chunk of my grocery bill on laundry and dish detergent!  I'm totally sold!!!
Another great trick I tried to clean your dishwasher and get rid of the hard water stains is to use one packet of Lemonade Kool-Aid (lemon is the only flavor that works), put it in an empty dishwasher in place of soap and run a regular cycle.  I have really hard water and was amazed at how well this worked. My dishwasher is squeaky clean and I didn't scrub a single thing!  Oh and one last thing.... I have seen several posts about using white vinegar in place of rinse aid.  The vinegar supposedly naturally gets rid of any spots on your dishes and glassware, I cannot wait to try that one as soon as mine is empty :)

If after using this detergent you notice that your dishes are clean but just a little cloudy, which I did I found a simple fix.. just a few drops of dish soap on top of your one tablespoon of homemade detergent right in the dispenser and wash as usual.  Be sure not to add more than a few small drops or you could have a kitchen full of suds :)  But just those 3 or 4 drops makes all the difference!

Hope this helps!  Lindsey :)

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