Uses of arm & hammer washing soda

Homeowners are usually familiar with Arm & Hammer's baking soda, a natural product used in baking, cleaning, deodorising and other household chores. However, the company's washing soda is typically not as well known. Also known as sodium carbonate, it belongs to the same family as baking soda, though it is has a higher pH and is more caustic. Like baking soda, washing soda has many uses around the house, so you may want to consider picking up a box from the laundry aisle on your next trip to the grocery store.

Laundry Pretreatment

Washing soda can be added to any load of laundry to beef up the cleansing power of regular washing powder. However, you can also use it to pretreat stubborn stains. Dampen the stain and combine Arm & Hammer washing soda with warm water to create a paste. With gloved fingers, carefully spread the mixture on the stain, rubbing in gently. Wash the item as you normally would. You can also use washing soda as a presoak treatment for a tough stain. Add 2 tbsp to the water that you are soaking your item in and allow it to sit for approximately 30 minutes before washing as normal.

Oil and Grease Cleanser

Arm & Hammer washing soda can help cut through oil and grease, so it is an effective cleanser for many areas and items in your home. Combine 1/2 cup with a gallon of water and use the solution to clean your oven and hob. You can also use the mixture to clean pots, pans and your barbecue grill and tools that are dirty with greasy residue. For particularly stubborn grease and oil stains, sprinkle some of the soda onto a sponge and scrub at the dirt until it is comes clean.

Soot Cleanser

If you have a brick fireplace, it can be difficult to clean it of soot stains, because harsh chemical cleansers can often cause the brick to deteriorate. Arm & Hammer washing soda is an effective alternative, because it is a natural product that is still strong enough to remove stains. For soot, combine 2 cups of hot water with 2 tbsp of the washing soda. Dampen a sponge with the solution and scrub sooty areas of your fireplace. Allow the surface to dry and rinse clean.

Laundry Water Softener

Hard water can cause serious problems for your laundry, because the mineral deposits can prevent detergent from rinsing clean and leave your fabrics rough and stiff. Arm & Hammer washing soda can help combat the effects of hard water on your laundry. At the beginning of the cycle, add a cup to your laundry along with your normal amount of detergent, and you will end up with clean, soft clothing and linens.

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About the Author

Based in New York City, Jennifer Blair has been covering all things home and garden since 2001. Her writing has appeared on, World Lifestyle, and House Logic. Blair holds a Bachelor of Arts in Writing Seminars from the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.