I had been doing some comparing and research on the different types of recipes, and it seemed the biggest difference between most of them was that if you have hard water, you should add some type of citric acid product. This products varied between Lemon Kool-aid (or a generic version), citric acid from the canning area of the store, or Lemi-Shine.
The Kool-Aid will eventually stain your dishwasher soap cup, so I wasn't going that route. The Citric Acid canning additive sounded expensive (based on others comments) and I read wonderful things about Lemi-Shine, and Baker's down the street carried it. Done deal.
I didn't really follow any ones specific recipe on this one, but based on what I read at several different blogs, decided to go with the following...
Here are the needed ingredients:
Here's the recipe:
1 Cup Borax
1 Cup Washing Soda
1/2 Cup Lemi-Shine
1/4 Cup Salt
Use 1 tablespoon pure load in your soap cup. Add white vinegar as a rinse agent.
Most recommend Kosher salt, but I didn't have any so I used plain old table salt.
This is where it gets REALLY complicated.
Measure and mix all ingredients. See. Wasn't that hard?
I stored this in an old margarine container we used for leftovers. We don't use margarine anymore, so when the kids see me putting soap in the dishwasher, they get a bit teary eyed.
They LOVED margarine.
They're slowly getting used to plain 'ol butter. Whenever they ask for margarine, or complain about butter, I tell them to go eat some plastic as that's pretty much what margarine is.
One of the biggest complaints I read about these (dry) types of dishwasher soaps is that the citric acid will turn everything into a solid rock a couple of days down the road. And sure enough, it's true.
I took the advice of a couple of different people and left the lid off, and stirred it every now and then, breaking it up. It's still hard, but perfectly usable.
It works very well and I seriously doubt I will ever spend the money on the store bought stuff again.
So, in ONE HOUR, I made both dishwasher soap AND laundry detergent, both of which will last for a very long time. I have plenty of all supplies left to make more down the road. The total cost for the Borax, bar of soap, Washing Soda and Lemi-Shine was $11 and some change.
That. is. AWESOME!
While I worked on this, Brad was doing this:
Looks great, doesn't it??? Then, we went to the Watson's and watched the Husker's pull off the best ever comeback to beat Ohio State - freaking excellent fall Saturday!