11/16/10

Dishwasher soap problems



Have you had problems with your dishwasher soap lately? Last month shortly after the crayon incident, my loads started coming out with white film and scum on some of the dishes, particularly the metal and plastic ones.

Then my mom told me that phosphates have been banned from dishwasher soap in several states, so I guessed that that might be the problem (either that or cheap dishwasher soap). I switched to a name-brand liquid detergent and it worked great, but I still had two big buckets of that cheap soap to use up.

I remembered reading about lemonade-flavored Kool-Aid powder as an ingredient in homemade dishwasher soaps, so I started adding it to my loads. It worked! 1/4 teaspoon is enough to do the trick, but 1/2 teaspoon worked even better. You've got to get the kind that comes in the little packets, unsweetened. Each packet has a bit more than a teaspoon in it.

I've ordered some citric acid to try instead so I don't have to deal with all those little packets. I'll let you know how it works.

Have you had dishwasher issues lately? Have you found a solution? If Kool-Aid works for anyone else, I'd love to hear about it.

9 comments:

  1. I remember a big article about phosphates being banned in Spokane or Idaho, can't remember which, but there was a lot of travel back and forth over the State line to buy phosphate detergent.

    I personally use the Everyday Living brand that Fred Meyer/Kroger carries. It's inexpensive, made in the USA and I think it works great!

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  2. I keep my rinse aide compartment filled with vinegar, and it works really well.

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  3. Oh my goodness! This might just be my problem. All my dishes have been covered in horrible, yucky film and I've been blaming it on hard water but now I am beginning to wonder. It would explain why the problem has been so bad in recent months.

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  4. Wow, I was going crazy with the nasty white film on everything! I am buying lemonade tonight!!!!!!! Thanks!

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  5. We have really hard water and have had that problem, too. It has helped us to run an empty load with vinegar instead of dish soap. Also, we've used Dishwasher Magic with some success http://www.amazon.com/Iron-Out-DM06N-Dishwasher-Magic/dp/B000HE9YVU (I bought mine at Wal-mart for about half the price).

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  6. Great tip! Thanks. I have been wondering what to do without my phosphate dish detergent. I am totally trying that.

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  7. That is soooo awesome! I used to always look for a high phosphate detergent, cause they dishes always looked wonderful, in our part of the country it was always the cheaper store brand that had the phosphates. Now who knows . . .

    Kristin

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  8. I have been wondering about that film all of a sudden on my plastic cooking utensils. I was thinking it was my dishwasher. I'm going to try the koolaid.
    I've also heard it's great just for cleaning the dishwasher itself, but have never gotten around to trying it. I think it just moved up on my list of priorities!

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  9. Finally a clue to what's been happening to my dishes! Yuck! Where can I still buy detergent with phosphates? I've been looking at new dishwashers thinking my machine was the problem!

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