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Cleaning your tools in the dishwasher?

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gigisiguenza

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I've seen so many different answers to the "how to clean up your soap making tools" on the web that include putting them in the dishwasher. So far, I've not done it. I've wiped out bowls and wiped off spatulas, then tossed them in a box in the closet to be cleaned another day. My logic has been it gives the soap residue time to harden and I can scrape it off then hand wash everything in the sink.

This has worked of course, but I really don't like leaving them like that because a) I don't like the mess in the closet like a chore still waiting to be done, and b) it means before I can make soap again, I have to spend a good deal of time cleaning first, which just plain sucks.

How do you clean up, and is it safe (after wiping out off) to put it all in the dishwasher alone and run it?

Gigi :)
 

cmzaha

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I wipe all my buckets and tool off with my soaping rags, then I drape them over a bucket for a day or so until they become coated with soap, then wash in the washer. I then add some degreaser with my commercial grade dish soap and wash up everything. It is just impossible for me to leave soapy dirty utensils. Took me a long time to come to terms with having my rags draped over a bucket to finish saponifying. I have never put them in my dishwasher because I do not want the oily residue in my dishwasher
 

MissBee

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My stick blender says not to put the blendy bit in the dishwasher.
 

gigisiguenza

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Cmzaha - I hadn't thought of that with regards to the soaping rags. Good idea, I'll use it. And I'm like you, it bothers me to leave all my tools dirty. What degreaser do you use? I will look for one when I go shopping this week :) And the oily residue in the dishwasher was my concern and why I haven't tried it yet. I have no desire to have it spring a leak all over.

MissBee - Mine is SS, and I wouldn't want to put it in the dishwasher either. I've just filled a pitcher with hot water and pulsed it a bit to free up the batter that might be in the nooks and crannies, then wiped it down really well so it's clean and ready for next time.

The ease of cleaning up my SB has me seriously considering getting SS pitchers for my soaping, just because they are so much easier to clean.
 

cmzaha

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I purchase my degreaser from either Home Depot, or Smart & Final. Simple Green is also good, I just find the others a little less expensive and are still commercial grade. It is funny, I am not fanatical about many things, but dirty dishes and un-made beds drive me nuts
 

spenny92

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Hm. This thread has me worried that I'm washing up wrong! As soon as I've finished soaping, I run the kitchen sink tap so it's scalding hot and scrub everything as it is. Is there an issue with doing it this way with regards to the unsaponified soap/oils going down the drain, maybe a blockage possibility? At least I've always got lye handy if that does happen!
 

Susie

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Sam's also has some good degreaser if you have a membership.
 

Susie

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Hm. This thread has me worried that I'm washing up wrong! As soon as I've finished soaping, I run the kitchen sink tap so it's scalding hot and scrub everything as it is. Is there an issue with doing it this way with regards to the unsaponified soap/oils going down the drain, maybe a blockage possibility? At least I've always got lye handy if that does happen!
Yes, there is the risk of stopping up the sink, not to mention live lye still in that batter in your sink. If you are like me, and can't wait, use rags or paper towels to wipe everything as clean as you can get it before it goes into dish water.
 

commoncenz

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Hm. This thread has me worried that I'm washing up wrong! As soon as I've finished soaping, I run the kitchen sink tap so it's scalding hot and scrub everything as it is. Is there an issue with doing it this way with regards to the unsaponified soap/oils going down the drain, maybe a blockage possibility? At least I've always got lye handy if that does happen!
You got it. Answered your own question there. The oils can leave a residue in your pipes that over time will lead to slowed draining or clogs. I've had to run a little lye down the drains every once in awhile to counteract this.
 

TeresaT

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I wipe everything off with paper towels. Once the majority of the batter is off of everything, I use my shop towels to wipe them off again. Then I wash everything with dishwashing liquid and put them on the dish racks to dry. I rinse the towels out and lay them out to dry before putting them in a bag to get washed.
 

spenny92

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You got it. Answered your own question there. The oils can leave a residue in your pipes that over time will lead to slowed draining or clogs. I've had to run a little lye down the drains every once in awhile to counteract this.
Interesting! Our drains have always been a little slow to drain in our new house but they were really blocked up last week. I blamed my boyfriend for washing up greasy baking trays, but now it's looking like it was my fault. :oops: Luckily, he just chucked some lye down there and that sorted it out.

I'll do the paper towel idea next time, as I do seem to be washing a fair bit of soap batter down the drain - I need to get a scraper!
 

gigisiguenza

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I wipe everything off with paper towels. Once the majority of the batter is off of everything, I use my shop towels to wipe them off again. Then I wash everything with dishwashing liquid and put them on the dish racks to dry. I rinse the towels out and lay them out to dry before putting them in a bag to get washed.
Do you do the same with your lye pitcher? I'm still very skittish about lye and am so careful. I've been rinsing it in cold water very thoroughly then wiping it out with paper towels before putting it up. Should I be washing it with dish soap too?

Man I'm glad I started this thread lol. The answers are relieving a great deal of anxiety.
 

kchaystack

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paper towels drive me crazy. Buy a bundle of painters rags at Home depot and use them. Once I wipe the small amount of batter off they go into a plastic pail for a day or 2 until I wash a load of laundry. Much more eco friendly than kitchen roll.
 

cmzaha

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I will clarify that I am not the originator of the rag to soap idea, I know Dee Anna has mentioned doing the same and so have a few other forum members. Paper towels became to expensive with the amount of soap I make. Even cuts down on the amount of soap I need when doing a load of soapy rags and towels.
Yep washing raw soap batter down drains is very hard on the plumbing.
 

gigisiguenza

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Cmzaha - I don't have a w/d in my apartment, I have to use the laundry room, so for now I've been using the paper towels we use at work (I buy a big ole roll from my boss lol), and I was so concerned about the active lye that I felt better wiping and tossing. I'll likely keep doing this for a bit, at least until I can get a nice Homer bucket on my next trip to HD. I just don't like the rags laying out someplace, and can't toss em in with my laundry, so this is working for now. I like the shop rags idea and will grab some. I've already sacrificed three dishtowels to the cause and don't wanna offer up any more. Had I thought of this when I was buying my supplies over the past couple months, I would have grabbed some. Chalk it up to a DUH moment LOL
 

Susie

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Gigi-The true beauty of this forum is that there is something new to be learned with each new thread. I am still learning, also. Like today I learned that Home Depot has the painter's rags. I used to get them at Sam's, but they stopped carrying the washable kind. I use those things for everything! And the last of my last batch (from 2002) is all threadbare and worn out. So I will be swapping to those for soap clean up also...and dusting rags, and window washing towels, and car washing rags, and...
 

gigisiguenza

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Susie, honestly, I feel like I find some new thing to add to my notebook daily LOL. I really don't know why the shop rag idea didn't occur to me sooner. I think in my mind anything I used for clean up had to be tossable, which is so silly considering it's for making soap! Hahahaha
 

coffeetime

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Not my story, but I would add another soaper's words of caution. She actually had a fire in her soap studio because they would put the raw soap-covered rags into garbage bags to taje to the laundromat at the end of the week and they spontaneously combusted. I guess a build up of heat from saponification with FO or EO residue in a contained area like the bag was enough. It set some nearby towels on fire.
 

kchaystack

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Not my story, but I would add another soaper's words of caution. She actually had a fire in her soap studio because they would put the raw soap-covered rags into garbage bags to taje to the laundromat at the end of the week and they spontaneously combusted. I guess a build up of heat from saponification with FO or EO residue in a contained area like the bag was enough. It set some nearby towels on fire.
My question would be how many towels are we talking here? How much soap were they making?

I find it hard to believe that my 2-3 rags would build up enough heat. But if you are making many pounds of soap a day, it is possible.
 
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