Thursday, September 6, 2012

DIY Dishwasher Detergent

Welcome back for another Thrifty Thursday!  Don't you wish someone would tell you that you never had to wash another dish again?!?  Me too! Probably one of the most debated household chore between the older generation and newer generation is the washing of dishes.  Hand washing vs. dishwasher washing...which is cleaner and cheaper.  The older generation would tell you that dishwashers don't clean as well and cost more.  The younger generation would argue that not only do the dishes get just as clean, but that it is also cheaper to run a dishwasher (and less work too).

Clean dishes are important, but so is saving money.  Did you know that using your dishwasher rather than handwashing can actually save money, energy, water, and soap?  The average Energy Star rated dishwasher uses only 4 gallons of water to wash one full load of dishes.  The average kitchen faucet turned fully on passes 2 gallons per minute.  That means that unless you can wash and rinse your pots, pans, plates, forks, knives, spoons, bowls, cups and any other items by only using the faucet for a total of under 2 minutes, you are wasting a ton of water.  According to a German study, the average hand washer uses around 27.2 gallons of water per load.  The water savings alone may be enough for you city folks who have to pay per gallon for yours, but being that I get my water for free I was left looking for more savings.

Up until recently, I was paying $7.67 for name brand dishwasher detergent.  I kept thinking "there has to be a cheaper way to do this."  Man, was I right.  I did some research online to find several different dishwasher detergent recipes.  I tested and tinkered until I came up with a recipe of my own that works in my dishwasher just perfectly.  The best part?  I already had all of the ingredients in my home!  That means it was essentially FREE!  I know that is girl math and that I should technically be figuring the cost of each amount of each ingredient from the total cost of the package...but doesn't FREE sound so much more fun?!?!

Here's What You Need:
1c. Borax
1c. Super Washing Soda (not baking soda)
1/2c. Kosher Salt (dissolves differently than regular table salt)
2 packets Crystal Light drink mix (for the citric could use koolaid, tang, whatever you like that has citric acid in it....I just happened to have Crystal Light on hand)

To Make:
Now that you have gathered all of your supplies, here is what you will do.  Ready for these super complex directions?  Dump them all into the container of your choice, close the lid, and shake it like a polaroid picture!  (some of you much older or much younger than me might not be familiar with the reference...just make sure you dance around and have fun while you are shaking)  Continue shaking until the clumps are completely out of the mixture and you are unable to see any color.

To Use:
Add 1-2 Tbsp. of the mixture to the main wash cup of your dishwasher depending on how soiled your dishes are.

Depending on your water quality this should leave your dishes sparkling.  If, however, you find your dishes looking a little bit cloudy, you can use this simple rinse aid.  VINEGAR!  Just add 1/4 c. vinegar to the rinse aid cup in your dishwasher to clear up those cloudy dishes.  It will also keep your dishwasher clean and fresh of gunky buildup.

Alright, now get to it!  I want to see those dishes sparkle and shine!  If you make this yourself or have your own version of this, please share it with me!  I love to hear back from you.  Make sure you visit again for more money saving projects on Thrifty Thursdays.

No comments:

Post a Comment