Monday, July 21, 2008

Homemade laundry detergent really works!

I just started making my own laundry detergent because it’s much cheaper, but something about it is making my laundry softer, too. Here’s the recipe I used for a dry mix:

1 bar Fels Naptha soap
1-1/4 c. 20 Mule Team Borax
1-1/4 c. Arm & Hammer Washing Soda (not baking soda)

Grate the soap with the small holes of a grater. Stir everything together. I used an old ice cream bucket. Use 2 tablespoons (I use a scant ¼ cup measure) per load.

I was worried it wouldn’t dissolve, but it does even though I almost always use cold water (except diapers and wet sheets!). It doesn’t bubble up like commercial stuff would, but it still works.

Someone else's calculations came up with a cost of just over a penny a load.


Moxie Mommy said...

Just when I think I can't adore you any more you go and post this. (What will I do if I find out you can't fly?) :) Keep up the good work. You are inspiring!

kara battel said...

Yea! Sue! How did you find me??? I think it's great that I will have a way to finally communicate with you! I always think of the first time that I met you and Bob (before Phil and Charise got married) and I thought that you guys were soooo cool! Can't wait to read more about you guys and hope that I can learn from your blogging- it's all new to me!

Rachel said...

Wow, I just might need to try this. I wonder how it works on my farming husbands greesy clothes??

Shawnicy said...

Does it really work on cloth diapers? It doesn't leave a residue on the diaper.
Also will this work on a front loader?

Sue said...

Oh yes, it really does work well on cloth diapers. I haven't had any more residue than with commercial detergent. (We used to use All Free & Clear.) Side note: we do occasionally strip our diapers to make sure there's no residue. Our nose is the guide as to when they need it. If they don't smell fresh, my husband both turns up the water heater as high as it will go and boils some pots of water, then adds this to a hot wash cycle with no laundry soap/detergent at all.

I'm not sure how this would be with front-loading washers. Ours is top-loading. You can suspend a similar concoction in water to make sure it is dissolved well, and I hear some do this for top-loaders. Here are directions: