How to Use Castile Soap

Never heard of Castile soap? Pity, but you’re far from alone.

Castile Soap is a centuries old invention that originated in Syria and later spread to Southern Europe. It’s in Spain where today’s formula was solidified, particularly in the cities of Malaga, Carthagene, Castile, and Alicante due to their high quality of water and an abundance of olive oil.

What else do we know about Castile soap?

  • 100% bio-degradable
  • Still growing in popularity as it replaces soaps with artificial ingredients
  • Mild and effective in removing dirt
  • Converted to liquid form in Germany in the 1880’s
  • Modern Castile soap is still primarily olive-oil based

Even today, hundreds of years after it first came on the scene, new uses are still being found for Castile soap. Here just a few ways to use it now:

All-Purpose Cleaner – Forget the pricey, chemical-filled commercial cleansers and make your own all-purpose spray by adding ½ cup of Castile soap to a quart of warm water in a clean spray bottle. Stir well to combine and use on kitchen counters, sinks, or any other solid surfaces. For an added boost, add a half cup of vinegar to the mix.

Tub and Shower Scrub – Give soap scum the boot with a powerful mixture of 1/3 Castile soap, 2/3 water, and ¼ cup white vinegar. Sprinkle baking soda liberally around tub and tile, then spray with the Castile soap mixture to activate the baking soda’s foaming action. Let it bubble for a few minutes before cleaning with a soft bristle brush or scouring pad. Rinse clean with water and let dry.

Laundry Detergent – If you or someone in your family is sensitive to fragrances or chemicals, or if you simply want a more natural laundry detergent option, mix one cup Castile soap and ¾ cups baking soda, then add ¼ cup sea salt dissolved in 2 ¼ cups of warm water. Pour the mixture into a clean gallon jug and use about ¼ cup per load to get your clothes clean without the irritants.

Dish Soap – Even if you only occasionally hand wash your dishes, you know how dry and chapped your hands can get with regular dish soap. Instead, fill the sink with 10 parts warm water and 1 part Castile soap, and wash dishes as you normally would. For extra stubborn grime on pots and pans, pour a couple drops of undiluted Castile soap right the surface and scrub.

Dishwasher Detergent – For a more natural way to tackle dirty dishes in the dishwasher, mix 8 ounces of Castile soap with 1 cup water and 3 teaspoons of lemon juice. Add 1cup of white vinegar to your dishwashers sealed detergent compartment, plus 1 tablespoon of the mixture to its unsealed detergent compartment, and run a regular wash cycle.

Floor Cleaner – Most floors, like tile, vinyl, and wood, can be cleaned with a mixture of a half cup of Castile soap dissolved in three gallons of hot water. Just be sure to use a barely-wet mop on hardwood floors. You can use a little more on water-resistant flooring materials.

For even better cleaning results, consider the benefits of a whole-house water filter from Eagle Service Company. You’ll drink, cook and clean with filtered water, no matter where your draw water from in your home. It’s a smart solution for anyone who cares deeply about what they put inside their bodies. Call today for more information and a free new system quote.

How to Remove Mold from Your Dishwasher

Mold. It’s one of those four-letter words that can do more than offend you or give you the creepy crawlies. It can cause serious concerns about the condition of your home and the potential for health-related problems that mold can trigger.

A common mold breeding ground is right inside your dishwasher. Mold thrives in warm, dark, damp places. It also loves leftover food particles and soap residue – so, what’s not to like about a dishwasher.

Luckily, with a little elbow grease and some basic cleaning supplies, you can remove even the most stubborn of mold deposits and keep it from coming back.

  • Start with an empty dishwasher and remove all racks and silver-wear trays or baskets. Wash the racks and trays by hand with warm soapy water and set aside to dry.
  • Mix 2 cups hot water with ½ cup distilled white vinegar in a bowl or empty spray bottle, and apply to the moldy areas as well as all seals and crevices where mold might be hiding. Thoroughly scrub the inside of your dishwasher with an old toothbrush or sponge – paying special attention to the underside of the spinning arms – and then rinse with warm water.
  • Place the racks and utensil tray back in the dishwasher. Pour two cups of vinegar into a small dishwasher-safe bowl or measuring cup and place it upright on the top rack of the dishwasher. Run a full wash cycle on the highest heat setting.
  • Finally, sprinkle a cup of baking soda on the dishwasher floor and run a full wash cycle on the highest heat setting a second time. While the vinegar works to kill the mold, the baking soda tackles any mold spores the vinegar may have missed while it deodorizes the interior.

When the job is completed, you can step back and enjoy your shiny clean and fresh-smelling dishwasher. To keep mold from coming back, wipe down any wet areas if you won’t be running the dishwasher for a few days.

At Eagle Service Company, we can stop the spread of mold in your home when the problem stems from a leaking water pipe. So, if you should spot black mold forming on all walls, ceilings, or inside your tub or shower, contact us so we can determine the cause, source, and take the necessary corrective action.

How to Prevent Pipes from Leaking

When water flows to the wrong place at the wrong time – as it would from a cracked or leaking pipe – it can cause extensive damage to your home and personal belongings.  Even a slow drip behind a bathroom or kitchen cabinet can cause sheetrock and wood floors to rot, thus leading to large and pricey repairs.

And since damaged water pipes come in all shapes and sizes, it’s important to understand what can cause a pipe to crack or burst and what you can do to prevent that from happening.

  1. Frozen Pipes

An un-insulated pipe exposed to below freezing temperatures can freeze, burst, and instantly start gushing water.  That can happen in your garage, a crawl space, or in any other unheated space. To prevent pipes from freezing, disconnect outdoor hoses and drain the faucets. Shut off and drain your irrigation system for the winter. And make sure all pipes located in unheated spaces are insulated.

  1. Leaky Pipes

Minor pinholes in your water pipes can’t fix themselves, but they can grow and become even more problematic.  It’s okay to tape over a leak in the short term, but don’t wait too long before implementing a more permanent solution.

  1. Unattended Drain Clogs

If a clogged drain is left to sit, it can cause water pressure to increase in that pipe.  Over time, the added pressure can cause the pipe to crack and spill its contents.

  1. Corroded Pipes

The older a home and its plumbing, the more prone metal pipes become to internal corrosion.  Constant exposure to soil, water, and temperature fluctuations can do a number on them, so you’ll want to baby them as much as possible for added years of service.  Start by switching from chemical to green drain cleaning liquids.

At Eagle Service Company we offer high-quality pipe repair and replacement services.  Same goes for water pipe insulation, sewer and drain cleaning, and any other home plumbing needs you might have. Contact us today for more information or a free quote on the home plumbing solution of your choice.