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What’s the Alternative to Laundry Detergent?

alternative laundry detergentMost of us in Oswego, Yorkville, Naperville, Aurora and Plainfield (IL) have been using laundry detergent to wash our clothes for just about all of our lives. Some of us might even recall the many different laundry-detergent commercials from our days watching Saturday-morning cartoons as kids, as well as those we still see while viewing prime-time TV as adults.

As with other household products, detergent has served a vital function in daily life, although, as we continue to discover, it does so at a cost. Laundry detergents are increasingly being found to have:

environmentally damaging plastic packaging that is non-reusable and non-recyclable, resulting in millions of tons of them in landfills each year.

a further impact on the environment by removing natural resources for manufacturing and burning fossil fuels to create the final product.

adverse reactions with the water table because the nitrogen in detergents reacts with phosphorous in the water, creating nutrients that stimulate algae growth in freshwater. The spreading algae then use more oxygen in the ecosystem, potentially harming fish and other marine animals.

Some detergents contain surfactants (surface-active agents) as well. These chemicals reduce the surface tension of oil and water. For laundry, they help dirt drop and stay out of clothing. These chemicals are toxic to aquatic life, particularly in eroding the mucus layer that coats fish and protects them from bacteria and parasites.

The Environmental Protection Agency also points out that surfactants can disrupt the endocrine system of humans and animals. Because surfactants reduce water tension, they also make it easier for waterways to absorb pollutants and pesticides.

Laundry detergent’s chemical-ingredient list further includes chlorine, phthalates, formaldehyde and, in some cases, a carcinogenic contaminant called 1,4-Dioxane. Found mostly in paints and varnishes as well as laundry detergents, 1,4-Dioxane is an unintentional byproduct of a chemical process called ethoxylation, which is the adding of ethylene oxide to other ingredients to make them less harsh in processing.

Most common in products with suds, such as detergents, soaps and shampoos, 1,4-Dioxane is watched and regulated by the EPA.

Many of us may also remember the recent cultural episodes in which young people were daring one another to eat Tide detergent pods, exposing them to toxic liquid chemicals that could burn the mouth, throat, stomach and lungs and even prove to be fatal.

Do-It-Yourself Laundry Detergent Alternatives

As devoted advocates of clean air and water, Air Dynamics is glad to be a community resource for healthier, more comfortable and more environmentally friendly ways to live at home, including performing our needed tasks such as laundry.

We can all contribute to turning the tide (pun intended) of laundry detergent’s harmful effects by choosing laundry detergent alternatives, particularly laundry detergents that are environmentally friendly.

Just a few laundry detergent alternatives on the market today include Meliora, Dropps, ECOS Next and soap nuts.

You can similarly create laundry detergent alternatives at home in Oswego, Yorkville, Naperville, Aurora or Plainfield. Simply refer to your laundry shelves and kitchen and bathroom cabinets for items such as:

  • white vinegar & baking soda
  • lemon juice & baking soda
  • hydrogen peroxide
  • washing soda (sodium carbonate)
  • castile soap (vegetable-based)
  • powdered oxygen bleach

Beyond what you might already have, you can find these items online as well. You also can easily locate instructions and recipes for making environmentally friendly laundry detergent with these ingredients. There are even laundry detergent alternative recipes that include vodka!

Next-Level Alternative to Laundry Detergent

In looking to maintain your laundry requirements without using toxic materials, you can go one highly effective step further.

laundry pro 2Air Dynamics now installs the Aerus Laundry Pro 2.0 cold-water laundry system featuring ActivePure® technology. The detergent-free system applies the cleaning action of water with hydrogen- and oxygen-based molecules to lift dirt and grime from fabric fibers and prevent odor-causing bacteria from growing.

In addition to not needing detergent, the Laundry Pro 2.0 eliminates the need for bleach and fabric softeners in providing clean, fresh, earth-friendly laundry.

The system’s technology is a variation of that originally developed for use on the International Space Station. It further is recognized as exclusive Certified Space Technology by the Space Foundation. Hospitals, hotels and laundromats have been using a similar process for years as well.

Other leading assets of the Laundry Pro 2.0 include:

softer clothes. Over time, laundry detergents can build up on clothes, towels and linens, weighing them down. The Laundry Pro 2.0 removes those accumulations to restore them to their natural softness. Your laundry also comes out cleaner, whiter and brighter.

no maintenance. The system requires no cleaning or maintenance to operate at its peak level.

ease for sensitive skin. The Laundry Pro 2.0 helps eliminate the itching and redness caused by allergies to detergents embedded in clothing.

no plastic. The average U.S. household can produce close to 80 pounds of plastic waste through bottles and jugs each year. With the Aerus system, you drastically reduce the plastic used to do laundry.

cost-cutting. Because the Laundry Pro 2.0 uses only cold water, you conserve heating energy, which further translates into savings on utility costs. You also no longer have to spend money on detergent bottles and jugs.

simple installation. The Laundry Pro 2.0 connects to your existing washing machine with standard hoses – no plumbing or modifications required.

self-monitoring. The system oversees its operation and communicates it to you with a glowing blue LED indicator. Should the unit require attention, it will indicate so with different flashing signals. The Laundry Pro 2.0 also has built-it leak detection.

Alternative to Laundry Detergent: Contact Us Today

At Air Dynamics, we really do care about serving our local communities with solutions that help ensure cleaner, purer air and water, which ultimately adds to quality of life in Oswego, Yorkville, Naperville, Aurora and Plainfield (IL) as well. To further discuss alternatives to laundry detergent and find out more about the Laundry Pro 2.0, just give us a call at (630) 731-1550!

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