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  #1  
Old 05-19-2011, 05:11 PM
calaren Female calaren is offline
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Exclamation Make your own washing soda!

Hi everyone,
I just registered and was debating what my first post should be about when it hit me - how to have washing soda anywhere, anytime, for super cheap! I know some folks have a hard time finding washing soda, or finding it cheaply, so I thought I'd share this with you all.

Baking soda is sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO3), while washing soda is sodium carbonate (Na2CO3). With a little chemical know-how, you can easily transform baking soda into washing soda - I knew those three years of a chemistry degree would come in handy some day!

Here is the reaction that tells what goes on when you heat baking soda:

(Hope that image shows up)
Basically, it just means that if you heat baking soda, it gives off carbon dioxide and water and leaves behind washing soda. Ain't that awesome?

Some folks bake theirs in the oven, but I do mine on the stove - gives better control and seems faster to me.
Dump your chosen amount of baking soda into a pot over high heat (yep, just the dry baking soda) and start stirring. Stir it occasionally and keep an eye on it's temperature with a thermometer. When the baking soda reaches 212 degrees F, you will see condensation on the inside of the pot and steam will come off - this is the water and carbon dioxide being released from the soda to leave behind washing soda. When the soda reaches 392 degrees F, the reaction will be complete and you now have a pot/pan full of washing soda! Wasn't that easy - and cheap?!

I hope that this will be of use to somebody!
Amanda
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  #2  
Old 05-20-2011, 03:53 PM
mozarkian mozarkian is offline
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That is awesome! I read somewhere that the washing soda needs to be stored airtight or it loses its effectiveness over time, if that's true it would be easy to just store baking soda and make the washing soda as needed. Thank you!

Question though--- does one cup of baking soda make one cup of washing soda?

Last edited by mozarkian; 05-20-2011 at 03:55 PM. Reason: add question
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  #3  
Old 05-21-2011, 09:51 PM
calaren Female calaren is offline
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The baking soda does lose some mass - the water and carbon dioxide it gives off - but it's a very very small amount. So for all intents and purposes, yep, 1 cup of baking soda does make 1 cup of washing soda.
I also have read that washing soda should be stored airtight, so I make up large quantities and store it in a 1 gallon glass jar.
Glad I'm being useful!
Amanda
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Old 05-25-2011, 04:32 PM
mozarkian mozarkian is offline
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Thank you for posting this, huge bags of baking soda are available very affordably and I use it for other things as well, so this will save me a few bucks on purchased washing soda. Thank you!
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Old 06-01-2011, 10:49 PM
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sissy sissy is offline
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Thank you very much,
and I sopose when baking soda is too old to bake with you could use it this way too lol
OH!!!!! Welcome
sissy
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  #6  
Old 06-02-2011, 04:33 PM
debidoodle debidoodle is offline
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Ok, this is awesome. Just plain awesome.
One question though, at that high of a heat, it doesn't scorch?
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  #7  
Old 06-04-2011, 02:30 PM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sissy View Post
Thank you very much,
and I sopose when baking soda is too old to bake with you could use it this way too lol
OH!!!!! Welcome
sissy
Sissy, are you confusing baking powder with baking soda? Baking powder has a limited shelf life. If memory serves, baking soda has an unlimited shelf life or thereabouts.

BTW, you can make your own baking powder from baking soda and cream of tartar. http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/20..._baking_powder

WalMart has big bags of baking soda in their pool section. I was buying them at Sam's Club, till I spotted them at WalMart. Now I have to check the prices to see which one has a better price. Stock up on soda and some cream of tartar (another long life item) and you won't have to worry about baking powder in a SHTF.

Lee
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:15 PM
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sissy sissy is offline
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I sopose I was mixing the two up as far as shelf life lol
Thank you for the tip I will check it out for sure. That is very good to know. Was wondering what else I could use cream of tarter for. Only used it 1 or 2 times.
Thanks again NCLee
sissy
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Old 06-04-2011, 07:26 PM
mozarkian mozarkian is offline
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I have a Snickerdoodle cookie recipe that uses cream of tartar (not sure what it does to the cookie, but the "other half" sure likes the cookies. LOL
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  #10  
Old 06-05-2011, 03:13 AM
oldtimer oldtimer is offline
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OK, am I missing something? Why would you take expensive baking soda to turn it into more inexpensive soda ash or washing soda?

You can buy washing soda in every grocery store in the country, however, they've "improved" it by adding something to it that the old washing soda didn't have.

I have a recipe for making varnish remover with boiled laundry starch and washing soda. It works magnificently but then they Arm & Hammer changed their washing soda to "improved" and now it doesn't work for washing soda.

So go to Ebay and you can order regular soda ash. If you buy a big amount like we do, it's way way cheaper than going to all the bother of converting your baking soda to soda ash.

Just my two cents worth.
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Old 06-05-2011, 04:42 AM
BonnyLake BonnyLake is offline
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Originally Posted by oldtimer View Post
You can buy washing soda in every grocery store in the country, however, they've "improved" it by adding something to it that the old washing soda didn't have.
Sorry to say - but recently it is almost impossible to locate washing soda in grocery stores.
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Old 06-05-2011, 10:22 AM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Same here. A&H Washiing soda disappeared from the stores around here, maybe 5-6 years ago. Finally found it stocked at a Kroger in a nearby community. Heard a few days ago that store is closing. Need to check that out and buy out their supply, if any is left. Along with blueing. The only place I've seen that item in years.

Appears there's just no local demand for A&H, as folks fall for all the hype of liquid laundry detergents with their "spring fresh", "new & improved".

Lee
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Old 06-06-2011, 12:01 AM
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AlchemyAcres AlchemyAcres is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BonnyLake View Post
Sorry to say - but recently it is almost impossible to locate washing soda in grocery stores.
Weird! It's in almost every grocery store here.

http://www.wegmans.com/webapp/wcs/st...oductId=354780


It's certainly at every pool supply too.


~Martin
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Old 06-06-2011, 01:12 AM
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sissy sissy is offline
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It's not in any grocery stores here, you can find it in some pool supply stores.
I guess a lot of cities don't have a demand for it except for pools. lol
This reminds me I need to pick up some more.
sissy
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Old 06-06-2011, 08:22 AM
BonnyLake BonnyLake is offline
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A funny, but stupid thing at my local Fred Meyer store, which is Kroger - they finally brought in some Naptha soap bars and they put them on a shelf with Borax and A&H 'plain' 2lb bags of baking soda - not washing soda! I guess somebody must have requested the combo but the buyer didn't know that there was a difference in soda's... LOL dumb but at least they are trying.
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Old 06-07-2011, 08:44 PM
oldtimer oldtimer is offline
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I really feel for you folks that live in such primitive areas that you can't find basic things. If you don't have the stuff in your store, then go to ebay and order soda ash. It's cheaper than I can get at the grocer and it's the old fashioned, not the new improved formula.

Does your store carry lye???
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  #17  
Old 06-07-2011, 08:59 PM
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sissy sissy is offline
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Quote:
Does your store carry lye???
Most don't but I can get it from the hardware store.
I buy the soda ash from a pool supply that will sell it by the pound or you can but it in the container for a lot more. Don't remember the price, been a while. I do remember thinking that it was a good price.
sissy
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  #18  
Old 06-09-2011, 09:25 PM
NCLee NCLee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldtimer View Post
I really feel for you folks that live in such primitive areas that you can't find basic things. If you don't have the stuff in your store, then go to ebay and order soda ash. It's cheaper than I can get at the grocer and it's the old fashioned, not the new improved formula.

Does your store carry lye???
Oldtimer, can't speak for anywhere else. But, around here, the opposite has happened. As our area grows more metro, store isles are being filled with "city folks" stuff. Basics are being crowded off the shelves.

Isles filled with heat and eat, ready made mixes, every flavor of soft drink, fruit drink, and even types of water, known to man. Wish I knew (for this post) just how many feet of shelf space is used for "air freshners", varieties of every brand name of dish detergent, and even potato chips.

Yet, 25 lb bags of flour, 10 lb bags of corn meal, A&H Washing soda, and many other basics have disappeared. Our local chain grocery store has only 1 brand of household ammonia. Have oodles of "beauty" bath soap, but not 1 bar of laundry soap. This list can go on for a while, but my disposition will only grow worse, if I continue to type.

Lye, as in Red Devil Lye, no, no longer. Meth labs side effect.

Lee
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  #19  
Old 06-10-2011, 12:11 AM
BWHLover Female BWHLover is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NCLee View Post
Oldtimer, can't speak for anywhere else. But, around here, the opposite has happened. As our area grows more metro, store isles are being filled with "city folks" stuff. Basics are being crowded off the shelves.

Isles filled with heat and eat, ready made mixes, every flavor of soft drink, fruit drink, and even types of water, known to man. Wish I knew (for this post) just how many feet of shelf space is used for "air freshners", varieties of every brand name of dish detergent, and even potato chips.

Yet, 25 lb bags of flour, 10 lb bags of corn meal, A&H Washing soda, and many other basics have disappeared. Our local chain grocery store has only 1 brand of household ammonia. Have oodles of "beauty" bath soap, but not 1 bar of laundry soap. This list can go on for a while, but my disposition will only grow worse, if I continue to type.

Lye, as in Red Devil Lye, no, no longer. Meth labs side effect.

Lee
Lee,

I have to laugh to my self every time you rant on the grocery store.

I am now doing 90% of my shopping at a store called Winco. They have the best bulk foods I have ever seen. From dog bones to coffee to pilot crackers and everything in between.

I stay away from the air fresheners and other money wasters. I use our money for real food and item to cook the food. Although I will admit to about 40 pounds of coffee in my stash. Can not have enough coffee on hand.

What gets me the most is the connivence foods that people purchase.
Does anyone know how to make mac & cheese with out using a box ?
Does anyone know how to a cake or frosting from scratch ?

What are these parents teaching their children ? When I was married and inherited my children they learned to cook and do laundry and iron clothes (they were originally mac & cheese from a box kids however they have now been converted).

I have had my grandchildren in the kitchen from age 2. We started with chocolate and moved on. I wanted them to have a love of cooking and not from a $%^&*(@ box but real cooking from real ingredients. My grandchildren have no issue eating stew or french onion soup or split pea soup because of this.

I have no problem taking my grandchildren to the grocery store with me in fact they are a help. They will not put anything in the cart with out reading the ingredients for bad preservatives.

One year I invested in a cast iron hand crank Apple peeler corer slicer machine, you should see the apple pies these children create during the holidays.

Enough of my ranting on boxed foods.
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  #20  
Old 06-10-2011, 12:13 AM
BWHLover Female BWHLover is offline
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Originally Posted by oldtimer View Post
I really feel for you folks that live in such primitive areas that you can't find basic things. If you don't have the stuff in your store, then go to ebay and order soda ash. It's cheaper than I can get at the grocer and it's the old fashioned, not the new improved formula.

Does your store carry lye???
oldtimer,

As lee stated I can not purchase borax, washing soda, fels soap or lye at any store in my area.
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