Super easy homemade laundry detergent

About a year ago (give or take), I came across a recipe for homemade laundry detergent.  Being scientifically challenged, I had the misconceived notion that it would be difficult, so the thought got stored in the back of my brain.  Several weeks a ago, the thought began to peck its way to the front.  Since I was low on detergent anyway it seemed a good time to try.  I should have tried it sooner.  It was super easy!  In case you want to give it a go, you only need four ingredients (if you count the water), and may take you an estimated 30 minutes.  If that!

ingredients needed:

  • 1 bar Fels-Napha soap {GRATED}
  • 1 cup Washing Soda {I used Arm & Hammer}
  • 1/2 cup Borax

Instead of a 5-gallon bucket, I’m using a turkey frying pot.

Using an old cheese grater, start by grating up your Fels-Napha bar.  Add the grated soap to a sauce pan (or in my case our turkey frying pot) with 4 cups of water.  Heat over medium-high heat until melted.  Remember to stir constantly.  While melting, your supposed to fill a 5 gallon bucket with hot tap water.  Considering I don’t have a 5 gallon bucket, I added the tap water at the end.

1 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda with 1/2 cup Borax

Once the soap has melted, add the washing soda and borax.  {This is also when I added the 5 gallons of hot tap water}

Fill the bucket the rest of the way with hot water.  Just keep stirring, just keep stirring.

Cover tightly and store overnight.  Your detergent will have separated a bit.

When your ready to use, stir well with a long spoon, or stick.

I’m storing my 5 gallons of concentrate in five 1-gallon milk jugs.  This way I don’t have to worry about any one knocking over a bucket, and I don’t have to pick up a large container from the shelf in my laundry room.

Fill a left over laundry detergent container half full of your concentrate, half with water.  Shake well before each use.  Measure 1/4 cup for a front loading machine, and 5/8 cup for a top loading machine.  If you use 1/4 cups per load, you should get about 600 loads washed.  Using 5/8 may get you 260.

The borax cost $3.49 at Target.  I got the washing soda for $2.99, and the Fels-Napha soap for $1.29, both at Kroger.  So, for a whopping $7.77 I have a enough borax for about 19 batches and enough washing soda for 7 batches of detergent.  The only thing I’ll need to buy is the bar soap.  The five gallons of concentrated detergent will make 10 gallons total.  This recipe only costs $1.29 to make!  I have been using a full 1 cup per load.  I should be able to get about 160 loads per batch, costing me only $.01 per load of laundry.  Holy Cannoli, talk about saving some dough!

It may not smell or suds up like the Apple Mango Tango that I usually use, but with the savings, I think I’ll stick to the homemade detergent for a while.

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