Sunday, August 12, 2012

Homemade Enzyme Cleaning Products

I'm going to geek out for a bit... sorry.  I can't help but get excited when I find a way to be more eco conscious and save money at the same time.

I have loved this cleaner for the last 5 years or so, but it's been discontinued in Canada.  I was OK for a while, but eventually my stash dried up.  I've tried other eco friendly cleaning products, but never liked anything as much as TKO.

And, then, I discovered instructions on Pinterest to make it at home.  Because I'm me, I ended up doing something of a blend of a few sets of instructions that I read and then doubling the recipe I came up with.   That was a few weeks ago.  My little experiment was finally done late this week.  I haven't tried it on everything that the claims say it can do, but it's worked well on basic bathroom and kitchen cleaning.  It's particularly good at cutting through grease.

I started with a pineapple and a bag of lemons.  I cut the pineapple according to the instructions found here and saved the peel, the eyes and the bits of pineapple that came with the eyes.  I also threw in some of the core as well.... so basically I used the waste from the pineapple.   The pineapple fruit is still good - I set that aside to eat later.  Then I squeezed the lemons to make fresh lemonade so that I'd have all the rinds for this.

I chopped up the pineapple and lemon waste into pieces small enough to fit through the top of an old 4L (1 gallon)  milk jug, and shoved about 600g or 4 cups of the pieces in.  I added a cup of brown sugar, 2 tsp of yeast and 2 litres ( 8 cups) of water and stirred until the sugar was dissolved, then I poured it all into the milk jug.    I labelled the jug with the date and put it in the fridge.

For two weeks (14 days), I opened the lid to release the gas created by the fermentation and gave the jug a swirl every day.  Two weeks later, I poured the liquid out of the jug, filtered it through a coffee filter to get rid of the bits of fruit or yeast, and poured it into a jar.

(I don't think there's any worry of people drinking it at this stage, but you might want to label it as a science experiment or something if anybody but you goes into the fridge)

That sieve didn't do a good enough job to filter it.  I had to pour it through a coffee filter to get the gunk out later.

I'd label it at this point, so that nobody mistakes it for juice.

So far, I've used it to clean the bathroom and the kitchen.  I tried using a small amount to clear a seriously, seriously clogged drain in the bathroom sink - I think it helped, but I didn't want to use it all up on this one thing so haven't really tested it out thoroughly on that.  Next, I plan to use it in the laundry, and to spray some on the dog pen to help prevent the eau de dog pee smell that crops up on humid days.

Some tips:

  • Don't use a jar with too tight of a lid when you're making it.  I think the milk jug lid was about right, but have read that people who do this in pop bottles have had explosions.  Either way, open it daily to release any gas that builds up from the fermentation.
  • The yeast speeds up the process.  Without it, you need to leave the fruit and sugar 3 months to ferment before it's done.
  • Most of the sites that I found for this recommended only lemons or citrus rinds.  Only one mentioned the pineapple, but it made sense to me and seemed to work.  Mostly, you're looking for acidic fruit.
  • I don't know if the results need to be refrigerated once it's done, nor do I know how long it'll last. I'm keeping it in the fridge for now.

Claimed Uses:

  • mix 1/2 cup of enzyme cleaner with 1 litre (4 cups) of water in a jar for an all purpose spray cleaner.
  • for dishes and laundry (use 1/4 cup of enzyme)
  • for washing bathrooms and toilets. grime comes off easily (1 part enzyme to 10 parts water)
  • for removing stubborn stains and odours (coloured fabrics and floors) (use undiluted)
  • to clean vegetables and fruits (1 part enzyme to 10 parts water)
  • clear blockages in kitchen sinks and drains (use concentrated or blended pulp/sludge of enzyme)
  • as a natural insect repellent (use undiluted) for ants, cockroaches.
  • for mopping floors (1 part enzyme to 20 parts water)
  • as fertilizer for plants (use 1 part enzyme to 20 parts water, or use the leftover mop water)
  • as a skincare product, e.g. facial cleanser or toner (1 part enzyme to 2 parts water)
  • wash cars – cars will look as if they have just been polished! (1 part enzyme to 20 parts water)

1 comment:

  1. I literally do not think I have ever been so impressed.