washing soda

What is Washing Soda (Sodium Carbonate)

Washing Soda (Sodium Carbonate Na₂CO₃) has a pH 11 is a caustic alkaline / base.  The high alkalinity of washing soda allows it to act as a solvent in removing a wide range of stains so is great for washing laundry and degreasing pots and pans.   

Even with natural cleaning ingredients you need to take care when using them.  Gloves should always be worn when cleaning with washing soda as it can cause skin irritation .Also as it can be dangerous in large quantities, make sure to keep washing soda out of the reach of children and pets. 

Washing Soda can also be known as Soda Crystals or Soda Ash and shouldn’t b confused with Bicarbonate of Soda.

5 Ways to Use Washing Soda for Cleaning

These are 5 of my favourite ways to use Washing Soda for cleaning around your home.

All Purpose Cleaning Spray with Washing Soda

This recipe doesn’t contain vinegar so is great for using on stone, granite, ceramic or marble surfaces 


  • Glass spray bottle
  • ½ Tbsp washing soda
  • 1 Tbsp castile soap
  • 2 cups of hot water
  • Approx 20 drops of essential oils (not citrus if using on granite)


  • Add washing soda & castile soap to the bottle.
  • Pour two cups of hot water in and shake well to mix (use cooled boiled or distilled water)
  • Add the essential oils to the bottle when cool and shake again.
  • Rinse surfaces with warm water after use
Note: Washing Soda can irritate skin so use household gloves when cleaning
Washing Soda

Unblocking Drains

Washing Soda is great for unblocking drains, just pour a cup of washing soda down the drain followed by a jug of hot water.  This will help remove any build up of grease or soap scum and make your drains flow more freely.

This will also help to keep your drains smelling clean and fresh.

Laundry Booster and Water Softener

Washing Soda is great for boosting the effectiveness of your laundry detergent, just add 1/2 to 1 cup to each wash.  Not only does washing soda help remove stains and brighten your clothes it’s also a good water softener. 

Cleaning Tiles and Grout

To clean your grout and tiles mix a cup of washing soda with a couple of tablespoons of castile soap to form a paste. Rub  the paste over the tiles and grout, leave for a few minutes.  Give the tiles and grout a scrub with a small brush then rinse off with warm water.

Essential Oils for Cleaning with washing soda

Oven Cleaner

If you’re cleaning your oven with my natural oven cleaning recipe a simple way to get your oven racks clean is to soak them overnight in a bowl of hot water with a cup of washing soda dissolved in it.  The high alkalinity of washing soda makes it perfect for cutting through grease, this means it’s also good for cleaning any greasy surfaces.

I hope you found these tips useful and if you’d like to find out more about natural cleaning check out my Home Cleaning and Organising section.  You can also find washing soda available to buy in my online shop.  Alternatively, did you know you can make washing soda from bicarbonate of soda.

Written by 

Hi, I’m Frankie. This is my blog (Thoroughly Modern Grandma) about blending old fashioned values with modern technology, whilst trying to reduce our waste and be a little kinder to our Planet.

2 thoughts on “5 Ways to Use Washing Soda For Natural Cleaning”

    1. Hi, no Washing Soda is Sodium Carbonate. It’s also sometimes called Soda Ash. Arm & Hammer do sell it, they call it Super Washing Soda.

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