The Wonders of Washing Soda

It wasn’t until I discovered washing soda that I felt I could clean everything in the house using less toxic ingredients.

I stumbled upon washing soda because I needed to peel old wax off a floor. Washing soda worked for this, as it did for cleaning up engine oil, and other tough materials that people generally use solvents.

Washing soda—sodium carbonate—is in the same family as baking soda. It has just been processed differently. It is much more caustic/alkaline, with a pH of 11, and while it doesn’t give off harmful fumes, you do need to wear gloves. It is found in the laundry section of most supermarkets. Arm & Hammer is one brand; Shop and Save has a generic house brand.

Washing soda cuts grease, cleans petroleum oil, removes wax or lipstick, and neutralizes odors in the same way that baking soda does. Don’t use it on fiberglass, aluminum or waxed floors—unless you intend to remove the wax.

Click here for a washing soda soot remover.

1 bucket warm water
1/2 cup washing soda

Wash surface, wearing gloves; then rinse.

For really tough jobs, make a thick washing soda paste by mixing it with water, and then spread the paste on the soot. Keep the paste damp by spraying every hour or so with a spray bottle. Leave the paste on overnight, and then rinse. Make certain to only use this formula on inert surfaces such as glass and stone, as this amount of washing soda can peel off paint, wax, etc.

By Annie B. Bond


Naomi Dreyer
Naomi Dreyer2 years ago

First time hearing about 'washing soda' Thanks.

Alexandra G.
Alexandra G3 years ago

soda, vinegar, lemon - great cleansers

Elisa F.
Elisa F3 years ago

Thanks for sharing.

Aud Nordby
Aud nordby4 years ago


Terry Vanderbush
Terry V5 years ago

thanks does carry washing soda

Bill L.
Bill L.5 years ago

Just to state explicitly what's been implied: washing soda is toxic, although safe to use with ordinary precautions (gloves, child-proofing, etc.). It does not accumulate in the body, is not linked to any chronic diseases, and can be easily cleaned up and disposed of. But it's caustic; it dissolves animal tissue in frying pans and garbage cans, and it will do so in you if you let it.

Danuta Watola
Danuta W5 years ago

thanks for the info

Chuck Klosterman
Chuck Klosterman7 years ago

Many household products can be used as green cleaning implements, such as soda. It is better for the environment that you do use these products. Everyone in their home has eco-friendly toys
that can help both them and their environment.

John D.
Past Member 7 years ago

Thank you Janet!!! I live in tempe and have been looking everywhere trying to find the washing soda. All I have found is large boxes of baking soda.

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Sushma W.
Sushma W7 years ago

Thanks for the info. I have recently bought a packet of washing soda and was wondering how to use it.