Saturday, January 9, 2010

Au naturale

I've decided that I'm going to start using natural products to clean with. When my husband was in the military, we got all of our cleaning supplies for the house from the self help store for free because we lived in base housing. We also got to use power washers and rug doctors for free when we lived on base, which is one thing that I definitely do miss. I guess I should be grateful that our entire first floor of this house has no carpet. Anyhow, I never really liked all the chemicals that were in the cleaners that I used, but hey they were free, and on a Senior Airman's pay, free is what we used! When we moved into our current house, the previous owners had left some cleaners in the closet so I used one of the rust removers they had left because there were rust stains in all the toilets and tubs. I had to go get a mask to use because it burned my nose and throat so badly. That really can't be good for anyone or anything, even if it does get the rust off (and it didn't get it all off, I might add). So when it was time to buy cleaner, I just bought a big bottle of Simple Green concentrate, and I use that to clean everything. It is nice to have one cleaner that I use on everything instead of something different for each room or fixture. Now I only have simple green, Windex, and carpet cleaner in my cleaning cabinet.
I recently found a recipe for laundry detergent on a friend's blog that I am going to try. I'm really excited about it and can't wait to see how it works. I've got my first load in right now. The best part? She said it only costs her about $20 a year for laundry detergent for her family of four. She also had a recipe for dishwasher detergent and window cleaner as well. Once my Simple Green runs out, I think I'll move on to baking soda and vinegar. If it worked for our grandmothers, it should work for us, right? Here are the recipes if anyone is interested.

Laundry Detergent
  • 2/3 bar of Fels Naptha soap (1 cup grated)
  • 1/2 cup Washing Soda (this is not pure baking soda, or arm and hammer's powdered detergent. It is arm and hammer's All purpose Super Washing Soda)
  • 1/2 cup Borax
  • Use 1 Tbsp for a large load and 1/2 Tbsp for high efficiancy washers.
  • Also, use 1 Tbsp of distilled white vinegar instead of fabric softener.

Dishwasher Detergent
  • 1 part Borax
  • 1 part Washing Soda (not baking soda)
  • Use 1 Tbsp per load
  • Use distilled white vinegar in place of Jet Dry, etc. in the dishwasher's rinse indicator

Window/Multipurpose Cleaner
  • 1 cup rubbing alchohol
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 Tbsp. vinegar

Happy cleaning, everyone!

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