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How To: Make Dishwasher Detergent

Updated on April 26, 2015
5 stars from 1 rating of Dishwasher Detergent

Nobody wants to buy a detergent for their dishwasher that doesn't get the job done right. We all enjoy drinking juice out of our crystal clear glasses! Typically, in order to achieve that goal (especially if you struggle with hard water issues in your home) you have to be willing to spend anywhere between $9-25 on dishwasher detergent! Depending on your family size and how often you cook, that bottle could last you anywhere from 2-4 weeks. The average family spends anywhere from $14 to $50 per month, on reliable dishwasher detergents.

What if you could cut that cost in half? Better yet, what if you could cut into a quarter of the amount that you're spending right now? For approximately $6 you could create your own dishwasher detergent which will last 1 1/2 - 2 months for the average family.

The best part is, this recipe is not time consuming!

The ingredients for dishwasher detergent: Epsom salt, Borax, White Vinegar, Baking Soda and Homemade Lemon Essential Oil tablets. Most items were purchased at the local $1 store.
The ingredients for dishwasher detergent: Epsom salt, Borax, White Vinegar, Baking Soda and Homemade Lemon Essential Oil tablets. Most items were purchased at the local $1 store.

Cook Time

Prep time: 5 min
Ready in: 5 min
Yields: 30-60 loads

Ingredients

  • 1 Cup Lemi Shine or Lemon Juice, (You may also use citric acid, or for a more natural touch use 5-10 drops of Lemon Essential Oil)
  • 1 Box Washing Soda, (Can't find Washing Soda? No problem! See below for how to convert Baking Soda into Washing Soda)
  • 3 Cups Borax Laundry Booster
  • 1 1/2 Cups Epsom or Kosher Salt
  • 1 Cup White Vinegar, Optional (as rinse aid)
  1. Combine first four ingredients into a mixing bowl (the Vinegar stays separate).
  2. Use your hand or spatula to mix ingredients together, until well blended.
  3. Place 1-2 tbls into Dishwasher dispenser.
  4. Pour 1 Cup of White Vinegar directly into the bottom of the dishwasher.
Click thumbnail to view full-size
A blue bowl with hard water stains and dried soap encrusted along the sides of it.The same blue bowl but no longer with hard water stains or dried soap encrusted on the sides of it.
A blue bowl with hard water stains and dried soap encrusted along the sides of it.
A blue bowl with hard water stains and dried soap encrusted along the sides of it.
The same blue bowl but no longer with hard water stains or dried soap encrusted on the sides of it.
The same blue bowl but no longer with hard water stains or dried soap encrusted on the sides of it.

Voila! It's that simple! Be sure to keep your detergent stored in an air-tight container when you are not using it. Your detergent should last you anywhere from one to two months, depending on how often you run a load of dishes.

For more information on converting Baking Soda to Washing Soda, click here and follow these very quick and easy steps! Save yourself the stress of searching every store in town for Washing Soda, and use the Baking Soda that you already have stored away for this recipe.

Now the only question left to answer is, what are you going to spend the money you just saved on? A pedicure? Dinner for two? Or perhaps set it aside for a year and treat yourself to a small get-away!

Which ingredient do you use in your homemade detergent?

See results

More About The Author

I am always searching for fun DIY projects to do around my house that will save our family time and money. I also love to cook for my family, and they love me cooking for them. I enjoy experimenting with new recipes any chance I get. If any of my projects and recipes are successful, I try to post them on my hubs to share with others!

I'm a young mom (well, kind of) of three and a happily devoted wife to a hard working man. Nothing brings our family together at the end of our busy days quite like dinner! That's why it's important to me that my meals taste good and that it's something everyone will look forward to and enjoy eating.

If you enjoyed this tutorial and are interested in more DIY projects or yummy recipes, check out some of my other featured hubs:

Momma's Homemade Spaghetti Sauce

Asparagus Pizza Squares

Pasta With Asparagus

Converting Baking Soda Into Washing Soda

As I said before, I love trying new projects and recipes so if you have a good one that you want to share, please feel free to post in the comments below!

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