10 Responses to “Inspirational Cleaning : Homemade Dishwasher Detergent”


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  1. Sassy Stephanie

    K. Got it. Going to try it. Ever use liquid castille? You know, since I just ordered a ton of it? (but, I did order some yummy scented bars too)

    • Crunchy Betty

      I haven’t. I worried when you said you’d ordered liquid (although there are TONS of things you can do with liquid castille, too). I would imagine you could use it for the dishwasher detergent, but you’ll want to make the whole thing a gel-like substance instead. So you’ll want to add water to the mix, too. Honestly, I have no idea how much, but it’ll end up being a lot like the laundry detergent, I would imagine. (So you’ll need to put it in a container that’s either REALLY easy to shake up or stir in.)

      Actually, I just looked at one of my favorite websites ever (www.tipnut.com) and there’s a recipe for liquid dishwasher detergent. It’s basically equal parts water, washing soda, and borax. If you’re going to do 1-cup ratios, I would use no more than 3 tsp liquid castille in there too. (The castille is for extra shine and cleaning, but it’s more of a “booster” than a critical ingredient, y’know?)

      Good luck! Let me know if you try the liquid and how it works out for you.

  2. Kristine W

    i was very excited when i found this recipe, i happily returned my finish gel pacs to walmart and made my detergent. my first time using it didn’t go so well it left a powder coating on all of my plastic with vinegar in the rinse well, so i decided to make it into more of a liquid. it worked really well as a liquid until i pulled the container out from under my sink today. it had completely hardend! rock solid. im totally bummed and dont know what i did wrong for it to harden. any ideas?

  3. Tehwrd

    I had the same problem with the soap I made.  I used Dr. Bronner’s castile bar soap, and put vinegar in the rinse well.  I got the film/powder coating on ALL my dishes… :(  Not sure if I need the EO or the salt or what.  I’m not ready to give up on it yet, but I definitely need to do some tweaking.  Not sure what to do though…

  4. Jmls09

    How much do you use?

  5. Has anyone figured out what to do to get rid of this powder film??? I’ve been trying it for about a week now. First without the castile and then with and still….I get the film! I swear my fiance is gonna freak that I convinced him this was a good idea and we spent a boatload on our first batch cause Ace Hardware was the only place we could find the washing soda (of course right after walmart had it for way less) and yet all week all the dishes have gotten the powder film and I don’t know what to do to get rid of it. Help! 

    •  Hi, Jessica. First, try running your hot water in your kitchen sink before you start your dishwasher. Let it get completely hot before you start. I don’t know why this helps, but it does. Also, make sure you’re using straight vinegar in your rinse well. That helps, too.

      Lastly, if those things don’t help, you can try adding some citric acid to your mix (a little goes a long way).

      And double lastly, plastics tends to attract that film a LOT more, so consider reducing your plastics and washing the remaining by hand.

      Good luck!

      • It’s totally my plastics that are getting the film the most. I don’t get it! But just in the past day or so my ceramic bowls are also geting a film on them. I did already know about the hot water trick and I definitely do that. I’m just getting tired of running the dishes through over and over and getting the same result. And I’m not 100% sure that my rinse aid compartment is fully functional, but that’s what I get for living in a place that will constantly try to repair something many times before it’s replaced….if it’s replaced at all. I was thinking maybe tweaking the recipe and cutting down on one or the other ingredient. Any suggestions on either the borax or washing soda to be cut down?

  6. Amy

    So, I had a lot of trouble with film on the dishes and was getting discouraged until I added 1/2 teaspoon of citric acid to the dispensing cup. I read that if you add the cutric acid to the whole batch, it can clump or completely harden.
    I also think I was putting too much soap in, scaled down to just one teaspoon. A final trick is to add about 1/2 cup of vinegar in an upright glass at the beginning of the wash.
    After these changes, my next load came out FILM FREE!! Whoo hoo!!
    Thanks Crunchy Betty for this awesome blog!! You’re an inspiration!!



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