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Rememberme's avatar

What is an Alternative to dishwashing detergent?

Asked by Rememberme (661 points ) February 14th, 2009

I am a college student who shares an apartment with 3 other people. It is my turn to buy dishwashing powder to go in the dishwasher. Compared to my roommates I am the “freethinker”. Something about the dishwashing soap creeps me out. I am looking for a safe alternative. When I reseached it on the internet it seems like a debate between borax and not borax…. Anyways, it there anyone out there who has a tested and true alternative to the box dishwashing detergent?
remember, I am a poor college student.

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5 Answers

Mr_M's avatar

Leave the dishes outside and the local cats will lick them clean. Just get up in the morning and put them away.

Bagardbilla's avatar

Dr Bonners!
For dishes (in a dishwasher use sparingly) for clothes, for yourself… for everything under the Sun!
It’s all natural, biodegradable, phosphate free…
MOST importantly it’s the the best reading on the “Thrown”!!!

greylady's avatar

You could try vinegar.

bristolbaby's avatar

whatever you do, don’t try laundry soap in the dishwasher…

voice of experience speaking…..

you’ll get an entire kitchen full of suds 6 inches deep LOL

Tumerica's avatar

Last week I ran out of dishwasher detergent and was not looking forward to schlepping to the store to pay $6.50 or whatever a container costs nowadays. So I experimented—with great success. Here is what I found out: a tiny amount of regular, liquid dishwashing liquid works brilliantly.

Filling the cup to the brim is only for when you are using commercial dishwashing detergents (which have foam-reducing agents). When you use dishwashing liquid—the kind you wash dishes with by hand—you must you a small dose. The trick with liquid dishwashing detergent is that it foams up WAAAAY more than the kind that’s designed for machines. To avoid foaming the kitchen, stick with the small quantity.

What I have been using is Dawn—which is known to cut grease—in about one teaspoon quantity. Weird? Yes, but it works.

My dishes and glasses are clean and sparkly. It is cheap, cheap, cheap. And no one is the wiser. Also, it does not have potential environmental issues as would using the borax/baking soda mixture you so often see recommended for an alternative. Borax can be toxic to some creatures. Dawn and other dishwashing liquids are designed to go into the septic system.

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