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Old 07-09-2011, 02:02 PM   #1
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Borax

I've been on a hunt for Borax so I can start making my own laundry soap, and dishwasher detergent. However, just read somewhere that it could be toxic to cats. Is there anyone that can enlighten me on this topic? If I'm using it on clothes and dishes would it be harmful to us or the cats? Would it be diluted enough?

Also if I do decide to do the Borax after learning about it.. does anyone have a favorite recipe for laundry soap or detergent? And other uses that would be safe around pets?

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Old 07-09-2011, 02:06 PM   #2
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No, it is not harmful to cats, it is harmful to fleas. We at Cat's Cradle Rescue use it all the time to rid our homes of fleas by sprinkling it on the carpets, letting it do it's job, then vacuuming it up.
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:24 PM   #3
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Have you tried 20muleteamlaundry.com?
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:31 PM   #4
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BTW, both Target and Wally World carry 20 Mule Team Borax. I don't think the price difference would be enough to go out of your way, so buy your borax at whichever's closer.
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:33 PM   #5
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Neither of them carry it here in Kingston Ontario (Targets not even here yet lol).. I've checked.. but heard I can get it at a grocery store. I just want to ensure it won't be toxic (100% sure) in the manner I'll be handling it before I purchase it. Some places say it's toxic but others say it's OK depending on how you use it.

Great site.. checking now! Thank you.
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:42 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by Saphellae View Post
Neither of them carry it here in Kingston Ontario (Targets not even here yet lol).. I've checked.. but heard I can get it at a grocery store. I just want to ensure it won't be toxic (100% sure) in the manner I'll be handling it before I purchase it. Some places say it's toxic but others say it's OK depending on how you use it.

Great site.. checking now! Thank you.
I belong to a cat rescue group. I have five cats livinig in my house and only two belong to me. One belongs to Cat's Cradle but seems to be unadoptable because he doesn't want to be a lap kitty and doesn't want to cuddle, one is totally feral and lives inside my couch, and one belongs to my son who originally adopted him from Cat's Cradle but he decided to be an outdoor cat in a very rural area, so now he lives with me again. Do you think I would let you do anything that would harm your kitty?
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:54 PM   #7
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Not saying you would Sir - I am just being overly cautious I guess. I have a cat that likes insulation so I want to be extra sure lol.

Heading out now for groceries and hopefully to find some of the stuff. I won't be using it on carpet just cleaning products so we should be just fine! I appreciate the info.
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:35 PM   #8
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Back.. found 20 mule! Now to find a good recipe for laundry soap. I have Linda's laundry soap, 3 bars already.
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:58 PM   #9
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Here's a web site that has a bunch of recipes:

10 Homemade Laundry Soap Detergent Recipes : TipNut.com

I am allergic to detergents (not all of them, but many). So when the brand I wasn't allergic to switched its formula (and I broke out in hives), I decided to make my own (also, money was tight, so it was a cost-saving measure). I make a variation of #4--I didn't have any containers to store liquid--I do now, but I like the powder one--I use Kirk's (I don't know if that is available in Canada--I buy it when I go to NY. I've been meaning to buy Fels, but keep forgetting when I'm in NY). I've used Ivory when I didn't have any Kirk's. I run the soap bar through the grater of my food processor, then I switch blades and use the chopping blade. At first, I would end up with clumps of soap on my clothes--making the bar soap finer solved that problem. I also add 1/2 c of baking soda to the mix (which is probably overkill since the washing soda is probably enough) and when I do the laundry, I will sometimes add tea tree oil to the water. I haven't bought laundry detergent for 6 months. I have always dumped about 1 cup of vinegar in the rinse cycle--but that was to get all the detergent residue out of the clothes AND to get the DROOL off my clothes.

I've been very happy with how well the homemade soap cleans. I am on my second box of borax and A&H washing soda.

I keep forgetting to buy liquid Castille soap when I'm in NY--have to go down again Monday. I have it on my list. I go through a lot of dish washing soap so wanted to try "homemade".
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:17 PM   #10
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Try this one. http://www.discusscooking.com/forums...oap-56624.html
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:24 PM   #11
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Saphelle,

I use Borax (the 20 Mule team) as a prewash in all my clothes AND the towels the cats have claimed as their own. Not problems at all. I also use it for ant nests.
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:54 PM   #12
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I have been making my own laundry soap for several years now. I can't tell you how much money I have saved. I don't worry about getting the Fels. i use whatever bar soap I have on hand. i use up all of those little bits of soap that are too small to wash with and I also buy those little decorative soaps that you find for pennies at garage sales. They all seem to work. I did have one batch that did not gel but it still cleaned jsut fine and none of us have ever had any problem with being allergic to any of it.
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Old 07-09-2011, 11:07 PM   #13
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i've heard it's safe for cool cats from wales.

borax de fraile, as it were...
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Old 07-10-2011, 05:49 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by CWS4322 View Post
Here's a web site that has a bunch of recipes:

10 Homemade Laundry Soap Detergent Recipes : TipNut.com

I am allergic to detergents (not all of them, but many). So when the brand I wasn't allergic to switched its formula (and I broke out in hives), I decided to make my own (also, money was tight, so it was a cost-saving measure). I make a variation of #4--I didn't have any containers to store liquid--I do now, but I like the powder one--I use Kirk's (I don't know if that is available in Canada--I buy it when I go to NY. I've been meaning to buy Fels, but keep forgetting when I'm in NY). I've used Ivory when I didn't have any Kirk's. I run the soap bar through the grater of my food processor, then I switch blades and use the chopping blade. At first, I would end up with clumps of soap on my clothes--making the bar soap finer solved that problem. I also add 1/2 c of baking soda to the mix (which is probably overkill since the washing soda is probably enough) and when I do the laundry, I will sometimes add tea tree oil to the water. I haven't bought laundry detergent for 6 months. I have always dumped about 1 cup of vinegar in the rinse cycle--but that was to get all the detergent residue out of the clothes AND to get the DROOL off my clothes.

I've been very happy with how well the homemade soap cleans. I am on my second box of borax and A&H washing soda.

I keep forgetting to buy liquid Castille soap when I'm in NY--have to go down again Monday. I have it on my list. I go through a lot of dish washing soap so wanted to try "homemade".
Tea tree oil is marvelous stuff but pretty dang expensive. I find it superior to campho phenique.
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Old 07-10-2011, 09:01 AM   #15
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Alix, thank you for the link, that is great! Can I sub baking soda for washing soda? I haven't been able to find washing soda.

I found the box of borax expensive (6.50) but I suppose it's cheaper than laundry soap that's for sure.
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Old 07-10-2011, 09:44 AM   #16
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Alix, thank you for the link, that is great! Can I sub baking soda for washing soda? I haven't been able to find washing soda.

I found the box of borax expensive (6.50) but I suppose it's cheaper than laundry soap that's for sure.
No, you can't sub baking soda for washing soda. They are two different critters.
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Old 07-10-2011, 10:02 AM   #17
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Do you have a Valu Mart store nearby? That's where I get the washing soda. I think I saw it at Canadian Tire too.
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Old 07-10-2011, 10:54 AM   #18
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Washing soda is OxiClean powder. I buy the Zellers brand. Works like a charm.

I've been making this laundry soap for a couple of years now and I love it. I have tried a few different bar soaps. The Sunlight laundry soap is good, the Fels Naphtha that Katie sent me is better. I've also used Lever 2000 and Ivory. Lever was better than Ivory. Not sure why though!

Have fun Saph, and this stuff goes a LOOOOONG way, especially in a front loading machine.
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Old 07-12-2011, 03:26 PM   #19
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Excellent Alix, we have a front loader! That is great news.

I don't think we have a valu mart here CSW. Oxiclean powder sounds familiar though, I will take a look next time I'm out and about. Thanks so much everybody!
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Old 07-12-2011, 03:38 PM   #20
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I'm not quite sure that Oxiclean is the same thing as washing soda. I have both on my shelf and they don't look anything alike but that doesn't mean that they won't work the same I guess. I get Arm and Hammer washing soda at Walmart sometimes and at Meijer's grocery stores sometimes. I think more stores are beginning to carry it because so many people are trying to make their own laundry soap these days.
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