Dishwasher Soap For Next to Nothing!

I get a little annoyed sometimes at the price of dishwasher soap. You can pay some serious money for it. Fancy little tabs with a power-boosting ball in the centre.  Even the basic stuff (liquid or powder) can run up to 5 dollars or so and it gets used so quickly. Fill the entire dispenser, then the pre-wash, then sprinkle extra for an extra-heavy load. So I was SUPER excited when I found a cheaper option over at Bikinis and Briefcases that really seemed to work, according to the comments. Did you know you can use Dawn dish soap in your dishwasher?!! Seriously. You can.

Dishwasher Soap

I know, we’ve all been told that we can’t substitute plain old dish soap for dishwasher detergent. Maybe some of us have tried it in a pinch, and have ended up with bubbles everywhere. The key to this, though, is to only use a few drops. Literally just a few.  Two drops is the suggested amount, and put it into the dispenser. 

Then sprinkle a bit of baking soda in the floor of your dishwasher. 

Run your dishwasher as usual, and prepare to be amazed.

Two drops, that’s all. Not “fill the entire dispenser.” Now I’m not the best at math,  but I bought my Dawn dish soap at WalMart for $2.97 for just over 1 L.  If I just used a few drops at a time, that small bottle would last me forever!

We do have hard water here, so I have been experimenting with more. Four drops seems to work well for us, so the amount may vary for you.  I may also do once a week with regular dishwasher soap just to give the dishwasher a boost.

You may end up trying this and finding that it doesn’t work spectacularly for you on a regular basis.  But it’s good to know in the event that you run out of dishwasher soap!

Note: This may affect your manufacturer’s warranty. If you have concerns about that, you may want to avoid this and use the recommended dishwasher soap.

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Marya R

I live in Bowmanville, and am a mom to four young boys - it can get a little loud in my house. I am a Christian, a part-time French teacher, a piano teacher and former homeschooler. I love finding the best deals, which will come in handy when our boys become hungry teenagers! We just moved to a house with more outdoor space, and I'm still getting used to life in the country (a walk around the block is a lot longer here!).

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  1. We have hard water, too. I am all for trying something new.

  2. We have very hard water.. the satins are crazy.. we should try this to see if it helps.

  3. This makes me wish we had a dishwasher- sadly, until then… I’ll keep using my Dawn to handwash! I love the one that keeps my hands soft!

  4. Looks like a great option – I’ve read that if you do that, it will void warranties, though. :(

  5. I always thought it was a big no-no, but maybe I’ll give it a try!

  6. Ok I just have to try this too, hey – if it saves money than I’m all for it. Thanks!

  7. I had no idea you could use Dawn in the dishwasher! This would have saved me many last-minute trips to the store, lol! Now I know for next time. Thank you!

  8. Wow. What a great way to wash your dishes at an affordable price. I didn’t know that you could use Dawn in the dishwasher.

  9. I have done this hundreds of times! The first couple of times were fails but I figured it out!

  10. Two drops? I’m amazed. I fill the dispenser on my dishwasher to make sure all gets cleaned. I’ll give this a test run.

  11. When I was a teen I ran the dishwasher for the first time when my dad was at work. I thought I was doing a good deed. I had filled it with dish soap. The WHOLE kitchen was full of bubbles. lol It was like an episode of I Love Lucy.

  12. Holy crap, you’re awesome! I literally ran out of dishwasher soap TODAY and came across this just now… so neat! I’m trying it tomorrow, thanks! :D
    Oh… and I have subscribed, just because this was so freakin’ handy lol.

  13. Wow that’s a new idea!

  14. Might just give this a try; the regular stuff is so expensive.

  15. I’m out of baking soda…do you think borax would work in it’s place?

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