A while ago I wrote a couple of posts about making your own laundry detergent and making your own dishwasher detergent. The laundry detergent was a roaring success and I have been happy using it since with no problems! Not so the dishwasher detergent.
I have used that recipe for dishwasher detergent with citric acid for many months. At first it clumped so badly it was unusable. Then I added some dry rice to absorb the moisture and it helped, but didn't eliminate clumping altogether and I didn't like putting rice in my dishwasher. The clumping is the citric acid absorbing moisture which makes it work not so well in the dishwasher.
It did work VERY well when first mixed, however and all the dishes came out sparkling clean with no detergent residue whatsoever. It's the citric acid that does it. Now I use store bought dishwasher detergent or my own homemade without citric acid in it. I keep the citric acid in a small jar by itself and just sprinkle a little into each load - no more detergent residue! We are much happier doing it this way and with very little added trouble. I top up the rinse agent each time anyway.
For those of you who are on the journey to self sufficiency and are having difficulty with the dishwasher detergent recipe, try adding the citric acid separately.
Self sufficiency is a continuous journey, one that starts with the first step. That first step is not all that hard to take, either. I don't believe anyone actually gets there. I don't think it's possible to achieve true self sufficiency. You wouldn't be reading this on a computer if you had...