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#61 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 08:42 PM
 
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i went to two stores and neither has the arm and hammer washing soda! thanks for the previous posts though. i will call the 800 # or maybe just order off soaps gone buy. i do have simple green though! i'm glad i checked this thread again. i was thinking borax, then i was thinking baking soda (LOL). now i think i understand!
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#62 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 08:46 PM
 
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For future info...I just put 1/4 cup WS into a cup measure, put in approx 2 tablespoons of SG in there, and it made...not even a paste. Toook 3 more tablespoons of cold water and a lot of mixing to get a liquid. I imagine it would be far easier using HOT water, but I didn't feel like it.


Brenda mentioned something about the spray pump, and using 4 pumps? It took 8 pumps of my spray thing to get even one tablespoon...so now I'm curious about that. I'd just been pouring it into a tblsp measure.
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#63 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 10:35 PM
 
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I just figured out a cute trick to measure out the Simple Green. If you have ever used Calgon liquid, the top at the line is 4 tbsps. I just diluted 1 cup SG with 1 cup water and if I put a full cap in with my wash it is 2 tbsps equivalent of SG. So you won't be adding the full strength to your laundry. I am thinking of adding 2 more cups of water and just adding 2 capfuls.

Just a quick thought. Plus it is easy to mix by shaking.
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#64 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 10:40 PM
 
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I just read an article, dated January 2006, on Consumer Reports's website (requires subscription) about Cheer Dark Fomula detergent. The article said that while it did not really clean any better than Cheer ColorGuard and Seventh Generation, it does lack optical brighteners. It said that optical brighteners can made black look "rusty" so you don't find it in detergents made for dark colors. Can anyone verify this? If it's true, then it sound like it'll be easier to identify which detergents don't have an optical brighteners, which is a huge bonus!

Mama to Boy (2) and Girl (5)
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#65 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 11:24 PM
 
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Tide is listed as a "trouble maker". Can you tell me which kind of Tide? Or is it all Tide in general ?

Thank you SO MUCH Brenda! This is an awesome thread thanks to you!

Amy ~ SAHM to DS (9) DD (5) and DS (2) And  expecting a  stork-girl.gif  late May 2012!


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#66 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 11:35 PM
 
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Followup to my make-a-liquid experiment.

My son was taking a nap so I didn't want to start any laundry when I mixed up the SG/WS/water. I let it sit, figuring it would be there when I needed it.

Oh gracious, it's now a ROCK HARD lump of white, with a slurry of green, yet see-through, stuff on top.

I'm sure it will go back to liquid if I put hot water into it, but MAN did it harden!
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#67 of 224 Old 01-28-2006, 11:59 PM
 
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i called the 800 # and found the arm and hammer super washing soda at raley's grocery store. so i got it finally! i'm going to try the SG/SWS combo. while i was there i also got some Soapworks laundry powder. i think i will use it for our clothes, maybe dipes too? what do you think....it says hypoallergenic non toxic, biodegradable, color safe, all temperature safe, no chlorine, no ammonia, no dyes, no EDTA, no NTA, No phosphates, no animal testing, baby safe. it lists it for washing diapers. it also says ingredients: fresh natural fragrance, blend of carefully chosen surfactants to optimize cleaning, anti-redeposition agent. what do you guys think about Soapworks?
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#68 of 224 Old 01-29-2006, 10:47 AM
 
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Thanks for the 800#...I went to 5 stores around me and nobody had washing soda.
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#69 of 224 Old 01-29-2006, 02:32 PM
 
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Brenda,

Thanks for checking back. I will let you know how the SG & WS combo does with my front loader & soft water combo.

For those of you having difficulty finding the washing soda, I found it at meijer last night, so if you live in the midwest, it would be worth checking out.
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#70 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 10:24 AM
 
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I don't post here often, but was pointed to this thread by another board. I didn't see anyone else mention this and sorry if I just missed it, but if you go to the simple green website you can print out a $2 off coupon for simple green which would help cut down the cost.

NOTE: You have to have your printed set to not keep printed documents or you won't be able to print the coupon and it will only let you print it 1 or 2 times so make sure you are set up right before you try to print or you won't be able to get it because it will tell you that you have already printed the coupon.

Hope that helps someone.
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#71 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 11:09 AM
 
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Oh that's perfect. I found the Washing Soda at my rinky-dink little grocery store but they didn't have Simple Green so I was going to pick some up today while I am in town.
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#72 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 12:43 PM
 
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i emailed soapworks and asked directly if their product has optical brighteners in it and it does! i read the entire box and nowhere on the box does it say anything about brighteners, optical or otherwise, and it doesn't have any comments about brightening at all. oh and it has an antiredepositing ingredient. so i guess i'll just use it on our clothes and not dipes. i used the simple green and washing soda last night and it worked great. just wondering both products indicate they "boost" cleaning. to me that sort of implies it should be used in addition to a detergent. what do you think of "boosting" issue. ugh!
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#73 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 02:43 PM
 
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That 800# is great! It tells you 5 stores where washing soda has been purchased in the last 90 days near your zip code.

I just picked some up at my grocery store (Stop and Shop) and found Simple Green at BJ's Warehouse. The Simple Green had a free refill pack attached to the sprayer bottle! Can't wait to try it!
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#74 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 02:45 PM
 
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Which version of Bi-O-Kleen is ok and which are not?
I use Bi-O-Kleen Premium Plus Powder and it seems to work well for me.

I totally agree about the problems with laundry detergents these days. This was much easier 8 years ago.
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#75 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 03:03 PM
 
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One other thing about Washing Soda. It works in the wash because it has a very high pH. A pH of 11y. It's caustic (as oppposed to acidic). Too much will wear out your diapers and turn hemp hard (at least in my experience it did).

High pH is great in the hot wash, but you must rinse it completely. You might even want to use some vinegar (which has a low pH) in you first rinse, to get the pH of diapers at about 7 to 7.4. Urine is acidic, so starting a little high in pH is ok.

Too high a pH diaper will cause rash, just like acid diapers will cause a burn-looking rash. So don't overdo vinegar either. Town water is already pH adjusted, but well water users can have a challenge with pH.

I stopped doing an extra rinse, and instead do a short hot wash cycle with nothing in it at the end, instead of the extra rinse. Extra rinse was not enough for me.

I can't stand the smell of Simple Green (my husband uses it to wash the tires on our truck), but I do think that method will be very effective.
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#76 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 04:53 PM
 
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Yikes, this is so confusing. I need a chemistry degree to figure it out .

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#77 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 05:37 PM
 
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So ChinaMomKaren, does the SG do anything to up or down pH as well?
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#78 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 06:02 PM
 
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what about Planet? i was just looking at their website and it looks like they don't use any additives. they specifically mention they don't use any optical brighteners. it looks like it is coconut oil and soda ash and borax. anyone know about Planet and how it works for dipes?
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#79 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 06:03 PM
 
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I thought one of the things to avoid were oils ... coconut oil, etc.
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#80 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 08:13 PM
 
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Yikes, does this mean that TTO and Peppermint oil and Eucalyptus oils are a big no-no? I had some on some wipes and then tossed the wipes in the diaper wash without thinking. Now all my diapers smell like peppermint oil. Do I need to wash them all with a squirt of Dawn or can I just use the diapers this time and then use Dawn with the next wash?

Thanks!
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#81 of 224 Old 01-30-2006, 08:25 PM
 
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Brenda:

You're wonderful!!

I second the motion to make this a permanent sticky. Too important for anyone to miss, both the experienced and new CDers.
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#82 of 224 Old 02-02-2006, 07:55 PM
 
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Just bought a HUGE bottle of Simple Green at WalMart (in the auto section, btw) and 2 boxes of Washing Soda at my local market. Everything together cost $6.89. Less than a box of detergent.

Do you also use this on all your clothes? This definitely makes life easier, I should say.

When I do diapers, I run a cold wash, then a hot wash, and sometimes a cold rinse after, depending on how nasty the diapers were. Which wash do I put this mixture in? In the past I've always put the detergent in the hot wash.

Thanks!

 "Now bid me run, and I will strive with things impossible." (William Shakespeare -- Julius Caesar)

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#83 of 224 Old 02-02-2006, 08:26 PM
 
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Hi,

I have a front loader and tried the WS/SG as described in Brenda's directions, put it in the detergent slot and set the machine, diapers came out smelling clean, I could smell the SG though, so maybe need to cut back on that a little, but I liked the results, worked much better than my Sportswash has worked lately.

They are drying now, so hopefully they will smell as clean as they did when I put them in the dryer.

Jess
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#84 of 224 Old 02-17-2006, 02:32 PM
 
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oh man am I glad I called that number first. There is only ONE place within 100 miles that carries it, none within 50. ugh.

Going to try a chemical supply place!
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#85 of 224 Old 02-17-2006, 04:08 PM
 
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I'm so glad someone mentioned Simple Green because I was about to shell out money I don't really have for Allen's ($$$$$). I'm not sure cloth diapers would continue to be affordable with the price of that detergent, but $5 for SG I can handle. Thanks!

Jessica, wife of Marc and Momma to Nikolai (7) and Nathaniel (6).  Expecting Olivia in August! 

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#86 of 224 Old 02-17-2006, 04:14 PM
 
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I've been doing the SG/WashingSoda combo for a couple weeks now and

Once I ran out of regular detergent I also started it with my regular laundry, and no problems. I do add a little fabric softener (Downy Ultra) to the regular wash, but no issues with the dipes.

 "Now bid me run, and I will strive with things impossible." (William Shakespeare -- Julius Caesar)

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#87 of 224 Old 02-17-2006, 11:10 PM
 
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okay ladies...

If you can't find the washing soda near you *like me*

Try a pool supply place. I got a 50lb bag of soda ash for $27.
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#88 of 224 Old 02-18-2006, 10:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hello! Brenda again. I've gotten more private emails, so I thought I'd return again. First, you all have been very helpful. I'm very interested in your experiences. Particularly those of you with front loaders. I'm still in the top-loading age.

1. Your feedback has caused me to cut back on the recommended amount. I was estimating the tablespoons in something that wasn't actually a tablespoon. 1/2-1 Tbs will probably do. 2 is probably too much, and accounts for those of you who still smelled the simple green after the wash. Front loaders may be able to get by with just a squirt or two (real scientific measurements, huh?)

2. I think some people may be confusing Baking Soda and Washing soda. Especially since Baking Soda is easier to find and also comes in big boxes from Arm and Hammer. Baking soda is "sodium BIcarbonate" and is fine in the wash, but won't do what Washing Soda does. Washing soda is "sodium carbonate", also known as "soda ash". Just be sure you're getting the right one. It can be hard to track down for some of you (for me, it's in my regular grocery store near, but not with, the detergents.) Kudos to the person who recommended looking at a pool supply store. You're right - it's the same thing.

3. I've not seen the yellow Simple Green myself, but as far as I can tell, it's the same thing, just a different scent. Should work just the same.

4. And just a further explanation of why I thought this would work:
Washing soda (also called "soda ash" or "sodium carbonate") is the basis of most detergents. They add surfactants and other things. It's the "other things" we're trying to avoid. But we need a surfactant. That's what the simple green provides, in a biodegradable, non-toxic format.

Residue free detergents are usually mostly Washing Soda. Charlie's Soap (the one I recommend, mostly because it seems to be the best buy, though I think sensi-clean/sportswash and Allen's are also fine) contains "only pure washing soda, sodium silicates and a blend of mild coconut oil surfactants." Natural Choices' "oxyboost" is "soda ash, sodium percarbonate, and surfactants" (sodium percarbonate is oxygen bleach - like oxyclean.) That made me think I could approximate (though not duplicate) their detergents at home, more cheaply, since Washing Soda is widely available. All we needed was a surfactant. Or something WITH surfactants: my chemical engineering friend suggested Simple Green.

What's missing, of course, is that "sodium silicate". Sodium silicate is sand and soda ash combined at a high temperature. Silicates increase the effectiveness of surfactants -they scatter grease and dirt deposits into small, suspended particles which rinse away without redepositing on freshly washed surfaces. So something like Charlie's, which was put together by chemists and people who have worked in the textile industry for years, is almost certainly superior to a home-made concoction, but for a "thrifty" person like me, my home version is close enough and has served me well so far. (you can get sodium silicates online, and automatic dishwashing powders have it, but if I was going to go that far to try to duplicate Charlie's, I'd just order Charlie's!)

Mainly, it's cheap, safe for people and the environment, approximates (though admittedly doesn't duplicate) most of the residue free detergents out there, and the ingredients are handy all around the house for non-toxic cleaning.

5. Someone asked about adding Borax. From my preliminary questions, it seems that it may actually do a little extra whitening, if you use hot water (which I don't.) So sure, Borax is fine to add to the mix if you use hot water and want to experiment with that. I'd like to hear your results if you do. (Although personally, if I wanted to use hot water and whiten things, I'd go with sodium PERcarbonate - oxy cleaners - before Borax.)
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#89 of 224 Old 02-18-2006, 10:48 AM - Thread Starter
 
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By the way, in double-checking that I had the "oxy-boost" ingredients correct, I noticed that they have their detergent on sale for the month of February for 40% off. The residue-free detergents all have such similar formulations - go with whatever you find on sale (in othe words, there's nothing magic about Allen's or Sportwash - they're all very similar.)
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#90 of 224 Old 02-19-2006, 01:54 AM
 
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Arm and Hammer *does* make a box of Washing Soda. They call it Super Washing Soda, but the only ingredient listed on it is calcium carbonate.

And I haven't seen it anywhere near the baking soda, so it would be hard to confuse it.

The practice that Target has of keeping the Simple Green in the car supply section (as a tire washer) could cause confusion, but not the placement of washing vs baking soda.
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