View Full Version : "Greener"/Healthier Dishwasher Detergent?

08-24-2010, 09:45 PM
I'm really slow to the whole green cleaner game, but I am trying to get on the ball. Coming to the end of my enormous bottle of Cascade or whatever detergent I have and would like to get a better alternative. Really, whenever I open the dw door after a cycle it just smells toxic. So, anything out there that fits the bill and is also effective?

(BTW, I tried doing a search but didn't come up with anything.)


08-24-2010, 10:07 PM
I use Seventh Generation powder. I found it wasn't getting things quite as clean as my old Cascade, so I started using a rinse aid as well, which helped a lot. Not sure if that defeats the purpose of the "greener" dishwashing powder, but I figured so very little of the rinse aid gets used each cycle, as opposed to the large amount of powder, that it was bound to be better.

08-24-2010, 10:08 PM
I use the ecover tablets. They work fine for me.


08-24-2010, 10:09 PM
A few I really like just as well as Cascade:
-Trader Joes powder
-Method cubes (Target)
-Ecover Tabs

08-24-2010, 10:40 PM
Trader Joe's Powder is awesome - much better than 7th Generation's powder (which barely worked)
Ecover tablets also worked pretty well for us.

08-24-2010, 11:23 PM
I make my own, using borax, baking soda, and salt :thumbsup: Cheap, easy, and works well for us.

08-25-2010, 12:01 AM
We were wondering about those rinse agents too. We bought a new washer that recommends using it, but I don't really like the idea. It seems like some of it has to be staying on the dishes which is kind of the point of the RINSE - to wash the detergent OFF of the dishes.

08-25-2010, 12:12 AM
Seventh Gen makes a rinse aid, too. I like Method Grapefruit best, with 1/2 scoop Tang, like the astronauts drink. I like Biokleen okay, it seems like it used to be better.

08-25-2010, 02:28 AM
We love the Trader Joe's dishwasher powder. Gets things sparkling clean. Didn't like any of the liquid soap versions (7th Gen, Ecover, etc) - things were accumulating build-up, perhaps without the friction of the powder? No idea, but we're really into the TJs soap!

08-25-2010, 05:39 AM
The Method tabs work as well as Cascade Complete and seem to get the best reviews when compared to other "green" options. I bought mine off Amazon for what was the cheapest price at the time (with the Subscribe & Save option). I get the scent free ones. The Method tabs were the only green dishwasher detergent that was actually effective according to a lot of the green living blogs I searched on.


08-25-2010, 08:28 AM
Thanks for your suggestions!

08-25-2010, 08:39 AM
I absolutely LOVE the Ecover tabs. We've been using them for several years (with 2 different dishwashers during that time) after trying a variety of other natural options and they work the best for us by far. I stock up on 4-5 boxes of them at the health food store in the next town. I recently ran out and had to grab some Seventh Generation liquid from the local grocery store instead and didn't even finish the bottle. Our dishes just weren't getting clean and I quickly remembered why I didn't like it when we first tried it. Finally got back to that health food store and walked out with 4 boxes of Ecover. Also, the lemon Seventh Generation had a noticeable fragrance (to my sensitive nose) compared to the Ecover. Not as bad or perfumey as the conventional dishwasher detergents I've used, but noticeable just the same. I much prefer no fragrance during the dishwasher cycle or on the clean dishes.

For rinse aid, we've been using Ecover (http://ecover.com/us/en/Products/Dishes/Rinse+Aid.htm)as well, since before we switched to the tablets even. I bought a 6-pack at Amazon a couple of years ago and am just now finishing the last bottle.

08-25-2010, 12:43 PM
We like the 7th gen powder, BUT we only use one tablespoon of it. It doesn't have the toxic odor like the mainstream DW det have. We tried biokleen and it was AWFUL! I ended up selling two unused containers of it at a yard sale for only a couple of bucks each. For liquid detergent for handwashing, I like the sam's club, 'member's mark' green stuff. It works well, is cheap and doesn't have a really strong scent.

08-25-2010, 12:46 PM
We love the TJ's powder too. Tried Seventh generation and Ecover, both didn't work that well. I use only 1 teaspoon of TJ in the prewash and main wash. Rinses clean and dishes come out sparkling clean. No odor either

08-25-2010, 01:04 PM
love the ecover tabs.

08-25-2010, 01:18 PM
I, too, am late to hop onto the green bandwagon but just picked up a box of the Ecover dishwasher something from Costco last weekend. Not sure if it's powder or the tabs, as I haven't opened the box yet. I'm finishing the last dregs of my Kirkland liquid dishwasher detergent. I know, I should just toss it but I can't bear to waste it. Just thought I'd mention Costco has Ecover branded dishwasher stuff.

08-25-2010, 01:30 PM
ecover tabs. They were ranked very highly in Consumer Reports one time too.

Work as well as Electrosol, etc. for me.

08-25-2010, 02:03 PM
I like the Method pink grapefruit ones. I have also used white vinegar in the rinse aid spot and it seemed to work well.

08-25-2010, 02:04 PM
I like the Method pink grapefruit ones. I have also used white vinegar in the rinse aid spot and it seemed to work well.

I remember reading this can "etch" glassware. YMMV.

eta:maybe I'm remembering wrong and it was baking soda that etches glass (if used in some sort of homemade dishwashing detergent).