Making your own dish washing detergent is actually very simple. We had almost given up on being able to use our dish washer. We tried to use our regular detergent products, with terrible results. I began searching out a variety of home-made cleaning product ideas. I tried a couple of them, with mixed results. Here is what I found to work extremely well, especially with our "VERY" hard well-water:
1 cup of Borax
1 cup of Washing Soda
1 cup of "Lemi Shine" detergent booster
1/2 cup of Kosher Coarse Salt
Mix all ingredients together, I store mine in a glass jar.
- NOTE: you have to be careful and allow the "Lemi Shine" to dry out a little before you close it up, or you will end up with a detergent 'brick'.
Use 1 Tablespoon per load
Add 1 cup of vinegar to a bowl in the top rack (to act as a rinse agent)
This ends up costing less than a nickle per load - much less than any other detergent I have found.
This recipe has made our dishwasher usable again!
All of our dishes are now very clean, and they do not have the hard water residue we had previously run into.