Home - DIY
By: - at April 24, 2013

Save $$ Using Homemade Laundry Soap

Doing LaundryIntroduction
These days it seems as though prices are rising on just about everything from meat to cleaning products. With a family of 5, I am always looking for a way to stretch every dollar and still get the best value for my money. Upon examining my grocery purchases, I noticed I was spending quite a bit of money each month on laundry soap. When I calculated the total amount spent on detergent each year I simply could not believe my eyes! Buying 2 bottles of store brand laundry soap every month for a year cost me $168.00. Just for laundry soap! I knew there had to be a better solution and, after a bit of searching, I found a recipe for homemade laundry soap that works every bit as good as the store bought brand but is much less expensive. I make this soap in large quantities (I use a 6 gallon bucket) for just pennies on the dollar and save money each and every month. My 6 gallon bucket of homemade soap generally lasts my family for at least 6 months and the ingredients can be purchased for less than $20.00.

Stack of soapWhat You Will Need

  • (1) One 6 gallon bucket with lid - I purchased mine at Family Dollar for $5.
  • (3) Three bars of soap - You can use any kind but many people use Zote.  Zote is a bar soap used in Mexico and I buy it from my local Mexican grocer.  However, I have used Camay and other brands when my grocer was out of Zote.  I have found that virtually any bar soap will do the job.
  • (1) One box of Arm & Hammer Super Washing Soda - This is found in the laundry aisle of the grocery store.
  • (1) One box of 20 Mule Team Borax - Also found in the laundry aisle.
  • Water
  • Old laundry detergent bottle(1) One empty gallon jug
  • (1) One large 2 gallon pot
  • (1) One container of either liquid or powder stain remover
  • Stove
  • (1) One long handled spoon
  • (1) One old laundry detergent bottle

The Process

  1. Stainless Steel potGrate all of the bars of soap. You can use a food processor or a cheese grater to accomplish this task.
  2. Place your pot on the stove and add 1 gallons of water. Turn the burner on the lowest setting and add the grated flakes of soap. To prevent bubbling, continue to melt the soap on low, stirring only occasionally until completely melted. This will take some time, depending on your stove.
  3. While the soap is melting, place 2 cups each of Borax and Super Washing Soda into your 6 gallon bucket. Add 2 gallons of hot water and stir until the powders are dissolved.
  4. In the same bucket, add 1 cups of stain remover. Again, stir until dissolved.
  5. Once your soap has melted, dump the soap/water mixture into your 6 gallon bucket. Stir all ingredients thoroughly. Add 2 more gallons of cold water and repeat the stirring process until all ingredients are well mixed. Place the lid on your container and stir every few hours, until the mixture has cooled. As your homemade laundry soap cools, it will expand so be sure not to add extra water. You will need room in the bucket to prevent overflowing. Once cooled, your soap will have a gel-like consistency. Your soap is now finished.

This is a concentrated version. To use your soap efficiently, take your old detergent bottle and fill it half way with the soap mixture. Add water until the bottle is full. Cap the bottle and shake thoroughly. Use one cap full per load, as you would with store bought detergent. You will notice that your homemade detergent does not fizz or bubble in the way that store brands do. Do not be concerned! This is completely normal and bubbling is not necessary to clean your clothes.





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