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Making Homemade Laundry Detergent
This recipe is not original with me. There are lots of versions of it on YouTube and other internet sites. It is very economical to
make. The Arm and Hammer Washing Soda and 20 Mule Team Borax are between three and four dollars a box each. The Fels
Naptha soap is ninety-seven cents a bar at Wal-Mart, but I've heard that they plan to quit carrying it. I'm working on a homemade
soap that will replace the Fels Naptha, and I will post the recipe as soon as I know it works. You can make 10 gallon of this liquid
detergent for less than $2. I've made 7 recipes of this detergent and I'm still on my first box of both the Washing Soda and the Borax.
I just buy a bar of the Fels Naptha soap each time I make a recipe. This detergent is great in both top loading and front loading. It
works just as well as the special HE detergent you have to buy for front loaders.
Getting your ingredients together
You need Arm and Hammer Washing Soda, 20 Mule Team Borax, and a bar of Fels Naptha soap. You also need a 5 gallon bucket with a tight lid, a 2 quart pan, a grater, and a 1 cup and a half cup measure.
Grating and melting the soap
Using the smallest side of the grater, grate the soap into a bowl. Fill the pot about half full of water and put it on medium heat on the stove.
Pour the soap flakes into the water and stir so it doesn't clump. Leave it on medium heat until all the soap is melted.
Filling bucket half full of hot water
I set the bucket in my sink and fill it. If a 5 gallon bucket won't fit in your sink, just set in on the floor and fill it with a pitcher. The water needs to be as hot as you can get it straight from the faucet.
Measuring Washing Soda & Borax
You need 1 cup of Washing Soda and 1 cup of Borax.
Add both to the hot water and stir until dissolved.
Adding the melted soap
Make sure all the soap flakes are melted, then pour into the water.
Stir until it is mixed well.
Filling the bucket with hot water
Fill the bucket to the top with hot water. Let the water run slowly or you'll get too many suds.
Letting it set overnight
Put the lid on the bucket. It will set overnight. I put mine in the laundry room because that's where I will keep it.
When you take the lid off the next morning, you will see that it is a gel. It's ready to use.
Filling your container
This is a used gallon jug. You can use a liquid laundry detergent jug. I used to use an old orange Tide jug, but I couldn't see through it, so I started using this one. Fill it half full of laundry detergent (if you can't see through it, you can't tell when it's half full), then fill it the rest of the way with hot water. Put the lid on tight and shake it to mix the water and detergent. I shake the jug each time before I use it. You've made 5 gallon of laundry detergent, but you're mixing half detergent and half water each time you fill a jug, so your 5 gallon turns into 10 gallon. Store the 5 gallon bucket with the lid on it.
I have a friend who uses this detergent to wash the vinyl siding on her house. She says it works great. There's no telling how many other things you can find to use it for.