Green Clean Week: Dishes

All this week I’m featuring my “alternative” cleaning methods, in depth, with recipes, processes, and failures.  I’m laying it all out there, folks.

There has been a lot of talk out there about what’s more efficient, hand washing or your dishwasher, and the latest buzz is that dishwashers are probably more efficient in most cases.  The reality of my household is that if I did not use my dishwasher, I would do nothing but wash dishes all day.  Did I mention I hate cleaning the kitchen, absolutely, positively loathe it?  If I was a superhero I don’t know what my name would be, but I know my arch-nemesis would be The Kitchenator….

I digress.  Seriously though, I run everything I can through the dishwasher and only hand wash things that can’t go through, or possibly hand wash a little when things get too backed up.  For the longest time I used Seventh Generation dishwasher detergent, which is eco-friendly and works great, but I had a hard time stomaching the price, so I started researching homemade dishwasher detergents.  I actually talked about this recently, so I’m going to point you to this post for the full recipe and scoop, but I’d like to add a few points since I’ve been using this for a few weeks.  First of all, it’s very important you use the precise amount each load.  What’s the right amount?  Well, you’ll have to figure this out for your dishwasher.  I know for me it’s about 2/3 to 3/4 full.  If you put too much you’ll get residue, put too little and your dishes won’t come clean.  I also want to reiterate that at least for me, I have to keep my rinse aid reservoir completely full of vinegar, to the point of topping it off almost every time.  I might have to wash one dish here or there to get some residue off, which I consider worth the incredibly decreased cost.

My next step is to replace my hand washing liquid (Seventh Generation) but I’m waiting on the current bottle to run out first.  I love my foaming soap pump so it will have to be something that will work with it, diluted or not.

Feel free to share your green/frugal dish washing tips below.  Happy cleaning! (Happy cleaning??)

This entry was posted in Cleaning, DIY, Environment, Frugal, Simple, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Green Clean Week: Dishes

  1. We don’t have an automatic dishwasher, but we have been using the Seventh Generation dishwashing liquid because it is fragrance-free. I recently learned I’m allergic to chemical fragrances (!). It does a fine job cleaning the dishes, but within a very short time the dishwater smells just terrible.

    It’s no big deal to change the water, but it makes you wonder what sort of chemicals are used in fragranced dishwashing liquids to mask the odor of used dishwater.

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