Automatic Dishwasher Detergent Recipe
By Lisa Chambers
Automatic dishwasher detergents are among one of the products that contain higher amounts of phosphates which can wreck havoc on the environment. The bad news is, from all my experimenting so far I have yet to find a recipe that actually works in a dishwasher but without leaving spots or residue behind on the the dishes.
I am extremely hesitant to recommend one of the “green” phosphate free brands though because many contain an ingredient called “zeolite”, which I have read may not necessarily be the lesser of the two evils. There is concern over the fact that because zeolite is undoubtedly not as effective as phosphates, more detergent or cleanser is needed- even more getting dumped into the environment. It is actually also cheaper and easier to remove phosphates from contaminated waters that it is for zeolite. As always, if something sound too good to be true there’s probably another side to the story…
Phosphate Dishwasher Detergent
There is also a popular recipe on the net that uses two tablespoons of half borax and half baking soda in the dishwasher. Once again, I have a hard time recommending this. Only in this case I’m not claiming it doesn’t work or isn’t more environmentally friendly , but borax has been linked in research studies to create fertility issues and just because it may natural doesn’t mean it’s innocent- remember borax is also used as a form of pesticide! Even though many swear by the use of borax in many types of homemade cleaners, I won’t use it in my home in areas that come in contact with my family at any time so I simply cannot recommend you use it to clean the same plates you’ll eat off of.
So what do we do? Well there is one tactic for the dishwasher I found to be at least helpful until better solutions are known of. First off I’ve found that you really don’t need as much dishwashing detergent as most brands recommend- using half of that amount does an excellent job in itself. Another thing that can be done mixing your powdered dishwashing detergent with as much as half baking soda, which acts as a water softener to make that lesser amount of detergent you use even more effective. Or even better yet, just do your dishes by hand!
Visit Lisa Chambers’ website for more free information, tips, and recipes based on a healthful and balanced take on beauty, home, and well being.
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