Can You Really Make Your Own Dishwasher Cleaning Tablets?
There are few appliances that have revolutionized household cleaning tasks like the dishwasher. Anyone who has one knows the luxury they bestow and the absolute joy of packing the dishwasher opposed to settling in to wash an entire counter full of dishes. The little dishwasher tablets can be quite a pain - often purchased in small volumes and usually quite pricey. Thankfully the secret ingredients in these tablets aren't so secret and it is incredibly easy to make you own, not to mention more eco-friendly and cost effective.
How To Make DIY Dishwasher Tablets
Tablets for dishwashers contain a combination of citric acid and soda ash, which is alkaline. These 2 ingredients create an effervescent effect when mixed together and added to moisture. For this reason we don't recommend making your dishwasher tablets in batch sizes much bigger than what we have listed below. We also recommend wearing rubber gloves during the process or minimizing the contact of your fingers on the mixture to avoid the drying factor of the very alkaline soda ash. Here is what you need ...
- Place all dry ingredients in a mixing bowl and toss gently until evenly mixed.
- Slowly add the water, allowing the effervescent reaction to bubble slowly, and stir until the texture of the mixture is even.
- Quickly scoop the mixture into a silicon ice tray and spread the mixture evenly across al segments
- Working quickly to ensure the paste does not dry prematurely, compress the mixture into the tray segments as tightly as possible.
- Leave to dry for an hour before moving from the ice tray and placing in an airtight container.
Notes When Making Dishwasher Tablets
- Touch the mixture and dry ingredients with your bare skin as little as possible. It is best to use a spoon to compress the tablets or wear gloves. The high alkalinity of the soda ash causes irritation and the citric acid becomes sticky when exposed to the warmth and moisture of your skin.
- Be careful to work quickly once you have added the water to the mixture. Once the mixture dries it does not bind well which limits your ability to compress the mixture to form tablets effectively.
- There are lots of recipes online that recommend adding essential oils to you mix. Most essential oils are not meant for internal ingestion and residue will remain on some of your dishes. For this reason, unless you have done substantial research on essential oils, we do not recommend adding any to your dishwasher tablets.
- The magic ingredient in dishwasher detergents and tablets is citric acid and soda ash. The one does not work without the other. Citric acid alone does not clean as well and soda ash alone leaves residue on glassware. These2 ingredients are cleaning power houses at home. See more uses for citric acid and soda ash uses in our product info pages.
- This recipe can also be used in powder detergent form straight into your dishwasher detergent socket. The effectiveness of this depends on your dishwasher design. Should you choose this application be sure to limit the amount to 1 tablespoon per load.
- To ensure your glassware comes out sparkling clean and shiny add some white spirit vinegar to the rinse section of your dishwasher.
More Uses for Your Tablets
The dishwasher is not the only place you can use these tablet cleaning powerhouse. They are also effective on glass surfaces, in bathrooms, toilets and other less obvious applications. Check our this site for ideas on other uses for dishwasher tablets around the house.