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Homemade Dish Washing Detergent

by Felicia Williams

Making your own dishwashing detergent is not only easy to do, but it is environmentally friendly and can save money in the long run. In order to survive in today's economy, you must find ways of cutting financial corners while still maintaining the same level of integrity in what you do and what you buy. One way to save a few dollars is by making your own cleaning products.

BudgetIf you run your dishwasher daily or even every other day, your dishwashing detergent becomes a reoccurring expense on your shopping list. The challenge isn't just that it's a reoccurring expense; the problem arises when the price for that same item goes up. That increase in price is not as a result of the manufacturer putting more of dish detergent in the packaging. It's usually a result of the rising gas prices, and fuel costs and higher prices to ship the product.

It may not be cost-effective to make all of your home cleaning products, but its definitely worth making homemade dishwashing detergent. The benefits range from being able to have a larger quantity of product for less cost, to knowing the products are all-natural and not harmful to the environment.

The recipe for creating your own inexpensive homemade dishwashing detergent is quick and easy. The recipe is as follows:

What you'll need:Laundry Detergent Ingredients Here's what you do (read slowly because there are only two steps):
  • Step 1: Add one tablespoon of Super Washing Soda to the dishwasher dispenser
  • Step 2: Add one tablespoon of 20 Mule Team Borax to the dishwasher dispenser

You're done. That's the recipe for homemade dishwashing detergent. Now the recipe for removing the water spots that so frequently occur with automatic dishwashers:

Once you've run your dishwasher, be sure to hold your glasses up to the light and inspect them thoroughly. You'll find that the homemade detergent cleans as well if not better than the store-bought detergent.

Homemade Dish Detergent Cost Comparison

(This article was originally written in 2007. Prices have changed since then, but the savings is still real.)

Depending on how much you pay for your dishwashing detergent and how much you pour into the dispenser will determine how much you are paying per wash for your detergent and spot removing gel.

The cost for this recipe is less than 4 cents per load.

Calculation as follows:

Cost of Borax: $2.50 for 76 ounces = .03/oz or .015 for ½ oz
Cost for Washing Soda: $2.50 for 55 ounces= 4/oz or .02 for ½oz

The recipe calls for ½ ounce of each so the cost per wash is about 3.5 cents. How much does your detergent cost (this week)?

Save Money

Other Great Money Saving Recipes:

For a great recipe for making your own laundry detergent, read Washing Clothes for Pennies. You'll find it to be easy to do and even more cost-effective.

A basic and effective recipe for homemade liquid hand soap is another way to cut costs and save a few dollars.

While you're at it, why not try composting?

About the Author: Felicia Williams is a wife, mother and grandmother who likes to write about a host of topics.


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Last Modified: 26 January 2020

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