Frugality isn’t always born out of necessity. Sometimes it is simply a choice. Some of the wealthiest people in the world claim that they only achieved financial security as a result of their own personal need to be frugal in all things. Being frugal doesn’t necessarily mean going without everything that is needed or even simply wanted. It does mean that as little money as possible is spent on the items and/or services being purchased.
One need that is acknowledged almost unanimously is the need for appropriate cleaning supplies. In general, humanity prefers to be clean. In today’s society that means accessing 3, 5, maybe even 12 or more specific cleansers from the nearest household goods store. Most purchase the necessary cleansers without questioning the costs, but the frugal RVer is going to stop and consider. They want to ensure that no unnecessary purchases are being made that will eat into their RV budget.
This consideration is warranted. The costs can be substantial. While some immediately accept that the expenditure is necessary, others will pause and look for other options.
These other options are actually becoming more and more popular. The use of more “natural” products that can be made in the home (or the recreational vehicle) is popular because they can save consumers a lot of money, but that’s not the only reason. Products that are made by the consumer contain no unknown ingredients. The consumer is aware of everything that was used during production. Most believe that avoiding mainstream cleansers will drastically reduce the amount of problematic chemicals that are infiltrating both lives and bodies with detrimental effects on the general health. To put it simply, homemade cleansers are seen as a way to save money and decrease the amount of harmful chemicals in the household or recreational vehicle.
RVers interested in replacing store bought cleansers with homemade cleaning products can begin with laundry detergent as it sees the most use in an average household or recreational vehicle.
Homemade Laundry Detergent
Approximate Yield: 576 loads
Approximate Cost: $6.00
1 bar of soap (any kind you want)
1 cup of Borax
1 cup of washing soda
A big pot (that holds more than 2 gallons)
A long spoon
2 empty gallon jugs/containers
When making cleaners it is recommended that the utensils, pots, bowls, etc. used for the process be set aside for this purpose and not used for food preparation or serving.
Step 1: Use the cheese grader to grade your bar of soap directly into the large pot.
Step 2: Pour a gallon of water into the pot with the soap. Turn the burner to medium high and cook until the soap dissolves into the water.
Step 3: Add additional ingredients – Borax and washing soda.
Step 4: Bring the mixture to a boil so it will coagulate. Once it does, turn off the heat.
Step 5: Add another gallon of water (cold) and stir.
Step 6: The detergent should thicken during the cooling process. Allow up to 24 hours for the mixture to thicken completely.
Step 7: Using a funnel, pour the mixture into a container/s. (2- one gallon jugs are recommended).
RVers who find that making their own household cleaners is right up their alley can find plenty of options for homemade cleaning products online with simple instructions. Laundry detergent is one of the most popular and easiest to produce for the first-timer, but for the RVer ready to move on to the next step Hand Soap is recommended. Save money, decrease your exposure to harmful chemicals and know that in the event that soap suddenly becomes unavailable, you and yours will still be clean. There’s really no negative side to this particular scenario.