Monday, June 14, 2010

Homemade laundry detergent

*I started this post on 5/24/2010 - it just took me this long to upload pictures and finish the post.  How lame is that!??

I want to give credit, where credit is due.  I did not come up with this recipe,  I just followed THIS TUTORIAL.
I *LOVE* Craftster.
I *LOVE* Making Things.
I *LOVE* Saving Money.

Here is the break down on the cost of 4 gallons of laundry detergent.
A 5 gallon bucket with lid  (made in the USA, from Walmart) $3.29
A box of Borax  $3.59
A box of Washing Soda $2.99
A bar of Fels-Naptha laundry soap $1.29

$11.16 is not bad for 4 gallons of laundry detergent, but the best thing is.  I don't have to buy another 5 gallon bucket, I can reuse the one I bought over and over and over and over..
And, I only used one cup each of the Borax and Washing Soda, so I can use those boxes many times over as well..  The next 4 gallons of laundry detergent will cost me $1.29 for the bar of laundry soap!

Now my initial review of this laundry detergent: 
Mine didn't turn out quite like hers did.  She lives in a cooler/dry climate.  I live in Oklahoma, the armpit of the US.  Its hot and incredibly HUMID here.  I really think that is what made the difference.

My laundry detergent didn't "gel" like hers showed.  Mine looks more like a thick Egg Drop Soup.

I kept a detergent container from the last time I bought detergent (one of the concentrated ALLs).  Since mine didn't gel, I fill it about 3/4 of the way up, top off with water, and shake well (She used a dilution rate of 50/50)..  I use the same measurements as the bottle of All would have me use.
I do have a front loader washer, which requires you use an HE soap - and this works BEAUTIFULLY.  Borax's new box even says its HE approved. 

I've really liked it so far!  Our clothes are just as clean as they are with the commercial products, it has not aggravated anyone's skin, our clothes smell fresh and  clean...

I'm sure I'll have a "real" test soon...

A few tips if you are interested in trying...
1.  You can often get lidded 5 gallon buckets free from places like Walmarts or Sam's Club bakeries - they get their frosting in those buckets and often just toss the out.  It wouldn't hurt to call and ask, and save yourself $3.50!  (I didn't because I did this on a Sunday when the bakeries were closed and I didn't want to wait a day for them to open to call and ask.)
2.  Borax can be found at Target.  I also found it at several little mom n pop type grocery stores, Williams grocery store in Choctaw, Ace Hardware, Homeland, and King Soopers (Kroger).
3.  Washing soda is NOT the same as Baking Soda.  I found Washing Soda at a couple of the mom n pop type stores, Williams in Choctaw, Homeland, and King Soopers (Kroger).  Target did not carry it.  Ace Hardware didn't have it in store, but they had it on their website and would ship it to the closest store free.

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