Discussion in 'General Homesteading & Building' started by SimpleMan, Nov 11, 2008.

  1. SimpleMan

    SimpleMan Guest

    I was thinking about how I would do laundry if I gave up my washer and dryer. Well, I mean, I know how to dry them.....that comes on it's own, but what is the best way or how do you guys wash your clothes? What detergents do you use? Also, what do you use as a stain fighter?
  2. dunappy

    dunappy Well-Known Member

    Stain fighters:
    Hydrogen Peroxide
    Baking soda

    As for laundry, there are several things you can set up for.
    Hand wash with a wash board.
    One of these would be helpful
    Lehman's - Products for Simple, Self-sufficient Living
    Along with one of these.
    Lehman's - Products for Simple, Self-sufficient Living

    Or one of these in place of the wash board
    Lehman's - Products for Simple, Self-sufficient Living

    And one of these is always helpful
    Lehman's - Products for Simple, Self-sufficient Living

    And this set up with some of the above items would be perfect
    Lehman's - Products for Simple, Self-sufficient Living

    As you noticed, I posted links all from the same company. I really like this company because of all the items they have suitable for homesteading and living simply.
    I think everyone seriously interested in becoming self sustaining should have access to this company and their catalog of stuff.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2008

  3. dilligaf

    dilligaf Well-Known Member

    there are several methods. The best option is to have an old ringer wash mashine, unfortunately they are harder and harder to come by unless you purchase some of the new fangled buggers as mentioned above.

    Simple solutions to this are
    couple five gallon buckets with a hole through the lid. Get a plunger and plunge wash rinse repeat... :) There is a sweet video somewhere on the net, but i cant find it at the moment,,, I know lowdown knows where the video is at though maybe he will reply...

    There are some cool metal plungers out and available for purchase although i find them a bit pricey for my frugal self...

    This is what i do for laundry here Wash tub and a cheap four dollar plunger. Fill with water, clothes and soap of your choosing (only about half the amount of soap you would use in a machine) . I then agitate the water and clothes then i use my handy dandy industrial mop bucket with wringer to wring the dirty water. I then rinse clothes in same manner and i generally do a second rinse as well. The wringer does a pretty good job and is much easier on the hands than wringing by hand. The mop bucket and wringer serve other purposes so they are not just more junk scattered about the house.
  4. Blissness

    Blissness Guest

    Hmmmm, a metal plunger huh? Never seen before. I'll have to keep my eyes open for one!
  5. saintsfanbrian

    saintsfanbrian Liberty or Death!!!!

    Use Baking Soda and vinegar as detergents.
  6. Carol&Steve

    Carol&Steve Guest

    Also, club soda is a great stain reducer.
  7. jenico

    jenico New Member

    I have one of the hand pressure washing machines form lehmans and love it. It is great for small loads. Than I hang them out to dry.
  8. twilightbluff

    twilightbluff Guest

    Never seen one before, Jenico. Do you have a link to one like yours?
  9. beethoven

    beethoven Guest

    Does hand drying get out all the detergent chemicals thoroughly? I get shingles from detergent.
  10. SimeaseDream

    SimeaseDream Guest

    Yikes! That is horrible, beethoven! Is that all detergents, even very gentle ones such as Dreft for newborns?
  11. dilligaf

    dilligaf Well-Known Member

    i dont use commercial washing detergents. WE use our grey water so i stay away from the chemical laden soaps
  12. StillStanding

    StillStanding ...despite the fall

    In olden times they didn't wash as much and placed greater reliance on boiling water.
  13. dyermaker

    dyermaker Guest

    I don't know if I can live without my Tide Lavander scent juuuust yet!
  14. lilythetroll

    lilythetroll New Member

    I know this thread is old, but as for detergents, I'm just getting into making our own laundry soap. We have three kids, two adults, and eight dogs in the household. The towels get used very frequently, especially as one of our dogs is blind, deaf, old, and senile.. she doesn't go outside. The recipe I used is gentle on the skin and the clothes, it gets any washing mechanics clean, and the batches lasts a long time. I'm interested in the concept of not using the washing and dryer machines, but we have way too many loads.

    As for the recipe?

    All you need are:
    3 Ingredients
    - A bar of mild soap, preferrably Ivory (you can get bar soaps in bulk, lasts forever)
    - 1 1/2 cup of baking soda or washing soda (Arm & Hammer brands have those in bulk)
    - 1 1/2 cup of 20 Team Mule Borax powder
    A big pot/sauce pan to boil water in
    A 4 to 5 gallon bucket

    Now, what to do:
    Grate the soap into the sauce pan. Add 6 cups of water and heat until the soap melts. This takes generally 15 minutes.
    Add the borax and baking or washing soda, stir until that dissolves.
    Remove from heat. Pour 4 cups of hot water into the bucket.
    Now add the soap mixture and stir.
    Add 1 gallon plus 6 cups of water and stir.
    Let the soap sit for about 24 hours and it will gel.

    How to use it and what's the breakdown:
    1) You use about 1/2 a cup for each load.
    2) You notice you only need a bar and a little over a cup of each soda and powder for each batch of detergent. Each batch of detergents makes for about 100 loads of laundry. The boxes and bars are in bulk, thus you have the ingredients to make up to 20 batches of soap.
    3) Each batch is up to 3.5 gallon.
    4) Each box of store-bought detergent is generally from $10-$15 for 64 to 76 loads. A box of borax powder costs about $3, bar soaps about $1 to $2 each depending on the brands, and washing/baking sodas (which you should have in your home as a generic home product for cleaning, laundry, toothpaste [baking soda], skin health, general home deoderizer, etc) are about $2-$4. That totals up to $9 max. However, divide the costs up into the batches themselves. It's roughly $1 to $2 for 100 loads laundry soap. For even better breakdown, Temptress did a good job on that: Ponderings and Prose » Blog Archive » It’s a Friday.
  15. Skybells

    Skybells Guest

    Can't wait to try

    Thanks for sharing....
  16. Canadian

    Canadian Well-Known Member

    I know it might sound funny but an old fashioned bucket and glass washboard will work very well. Also an electric or hand crank laundry mangle work great. You can buy them for very little at a country antique store.

    When I cleaned out my grandfather's house when we put him in the old age home after his stroke we went in the laundry room. He never used his brand new washer and dryer. He was using the mangle and washboard that he had since 1949!

    His clothes were always crisp and clean. It never came across that he was cleaning his clothes the "old school" way. He did this his whole life and we never noticed.
  17. guyfour

    guyfour Guest

    Thanks for the tip, I have been getting hives from some weird contaminant and I think it may have been some kind of concentrate detergent either I or one of my roommates had used in the washing machine or walking in the backyard where our bbq pit ashes are on the ground. I think if I made my own irish springs detergent it would narrow down the source since that is what soap I use normally.
  18. The_Blob

    The_Blob performing monkey

    thanx for the recipe lily, I have a bunch of hotel soaps in my travel bag that I really don't have much use for, so I'm going to try it this weekend

    I'll let all ya'all know how it turns out
  19. Lake Windsong

    Lake Windsong Well-Known Member

    Through trial and error, I've adjusted a homemade laundry powder recipe as follows:

    1 bar grated Ivory
    2 cups washing soda
    2 cups baking soda

    I grate the Ivory in the food processor and spread it out to dry for a day or so. Then I reprocess so it becomes a powder. Mix this with the washing soda and baking soda. I usually use around 1/2 cup or less per load, rinse with 1/2 cup vinegar. No need for dryer sheets since you use the vinegar.

    In a power outage situation, I use a bucket and plunger, and a wringer mop bucket before hanging the clothes to dry. Works well.
  20. twolilfishies

    twolilfishies wanna be prepared


    the wringer for a mop sounds frikkin awesome! totally going to use that as i usually do tubs full of 5 peoples laundry by hand(yes i live in the city but im a hick)....:cry: