Saving the HE Washer and Our Noses

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[flickr id=”6356588635″ thumbnail=”small” overlay=”true” size=”small” group=”” align=”left”]A year ago we had a major problem.  Our HE washer STUNK.

It was horrible.  The smell was transferring to our clothes.  We were at a loss.  We tried the brand name “HE cleaner” tablets. They helped a little, but it was bad. So very bad.

We muddled through. Unable to do anything about buying a new one, we kept up with regular cleaning tablets, leaving the door open and extra cleaning cycles.

All along I’ve wanted a dry detergent I could make at home. I was buying detergent and cutting it with borax, but we were still buying it too often and spending too much.  I would have loved to make laundry detergent sooner, but all the recipes were for liquid. And really, let’s face it – I’m lazy.

Then I found pinterest.  I was goaded into it. I got hoked fast. Along the way I stumbled on a pin for a homemade DRY detergent.  I thought it was too good to be true!

So I whipped it up, tried it.

That was four months ago and I have never gone back*.  My husband (with his hyper sensitive nose) loves the citrus-y smell of the detergent, and the wash when it comes out. It’s cheap to make and one batch lasts about six weeks in a household full of 5 people.

The best part?

My washer doesn’t smell.

I haven’t had to pay to buy the cleaning tablets. I haven’t had to leave it open all the time (although I still do just because it’s better for it – but I never feel guilty for closing it).  My wash is amazingly soft and smells delectable. There is no moldy lingering odor. If I take out the dryer bar (yes, I still use that…it’s my one indulgence) for my husband’s jean cycle and forget to put it back in…the clothes are still wonderfully soft – even towels!

In the end I totally credit this laundry soap with saving my HE washer, and our noses.

So what is in it? I know you’re dying to know….

1 bar Fels Naptha ($1 at WalMart)

1 cup Borax ($2.50/box at WalMart…& I use it for SO many of my cleaning products. packs a punch for a cheap price)

1 cup Arm & Hammer Washing Soda ($3 at WalMart. Washing Soda, not baking soda. I’ve made 4 batches & still have over half of a box left…again, well worth the price)

Grate the Fels Naptha** and mix everything together.

It takes ONE TABLESPOON per load. That’s it!


*I say never. We recently ran out & I’ve been sick so we dipped into the brand name detergent we still had around. Within 2 washes the stench was back in my washer. It was then that I knew w/o a doubt that my homemade detergent was better & made it as soon as I could.

**Side note on the Fels Naptha. The gratings in my picture are huge. My teenager washed the grater and the small side was dirty. I was in a rush to get towels washed so I used the big side. Use the small grater. You get a much better mix. I will have to shake mine out with every wash to make sure I spread out the Fels Naptha.

***Original Site I got recipe from (credit goes where it’s due. Just saying 🙂 )***

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