Sal Suds Dilution Cheat Sheet

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There is a lot of overlap here with the Castile Soap Dilutions Cheat Sheet because the products can often be interchanged. It is largely a matter of personal preference, but the Sal Suds Biodegradable Cleaner is more clean-rinsing in hard water situations, and is slightly more effective on grease and tough stains. As with the Castile soaps, these recommended dilutions are not set in stone. You may have dirtier stuff, larger sinks, a larger washer, etc., and may need to tweak these amounts to your own situation.

Dr. Bronner's Sal Suds dilutions cheat sheet

What Sal Suds looks like in my house, from most concentrated to least, left to right: Undiluted gallon for the laundry room, Undiluted quart for easy handling when making other solutions, Diluted Dishwashing squirt bottle, All Purpose Spray for most things, Sal Suds Lite for windows and less dirty stuff.

Sal Suds, Sal Suds, How do I love thee?

I use it for…
Clothes
Towels
Sheets
Halloween costumes
Tile Floors
Carpet
Granite
Painted walls
Painted shelves
Plastic trash cans
Make Up brushes
Dishes
Lunchboxes
Dog bowls
Dog carriers
Dog collars
Windows
Cars
Car leather
Finished wood
Wood cutting boards
Plastic cutting boards
My grill (aka bar-b-que)
Outdoor metal furniture
Outdoor plastic furniture
Plastic toys
Stainless steel appliances
Paint brushes
China
Glass vases
Pottery
Beach balls
Diaper Changing pads
Wicker baskets
Artificial greenery
Painted MDF
Microsuede
Plastic storage bins
Tooth brushes
Tooth brush holders
Porcelain bathroom fixtures – toilet, tub, sink
Metal doorknobs
Plastic light switches and covers
Cork trivets
Rubber oven mitts
Silicone parts of my breast pump
My plastic nasal irrigator
Brita water filter
Plastic cooler
Stainless steel water bottles
Exterior of small kitchen appliances
Nylon tents
Fruits and veggies

This list doesn’t name every possibility but shows that there is very little that can’t be cleaned with the Suds. The long and short of it is, if it’s not on this list, then I probably didn’t think of it. Sal Suds is safe for any surface or material that can get wet (but it’s not meant for people or animals – it can be drying). However, if you have something that’s iffy, do a spot test.

Dilutions:

Laundry: 2-3 Tbsp. (30-45 mL) for a large load in a top loading washer. Optional: For extra whitening/brightening, add ½ c. (120 mL) baking soda to wash cycle and/or 1 c. (240 mL) vinegar to rinse cycle. Halve these amounts for HE washers.

Pretreating Laundry Stains: Pre-measure Sal Suds for load. Apply some or all directly to stain(s). Let sit 30 minutes or more. Add remaining Sal Suds to washer. For lighter stains, spray with All-Purpose Spray (below).

Handwashing Delicates: 1/2 capful Sal Suds in about 1 gallon (4 L) of water. Swish gently. Let soak 10 minutes. Swish again. Rinse with clean water. Gently press out excess water with a towel. Hang clothing or lay flat to dry.

All-Purpose Spray: 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) Sal Suds in a quart (1 L) of water. Hint: Put water in the bottle first. Optional: For extra antimicrobial punch, add 1/4 tsp. (1.25 mL) tea tree essential oil. Use on any surface that is safe in contact with water.
Sal Suds Cleaner in a Spray Bottle

Stainless Steel Sink: Spray sink with All-Purpose Spray and sprinkle with baking soda from a shaker. Scrub then rinse.

Toilets: For best results, empty toilet. Spray bowl thoroughly with All-Purpose Spray, sprinkle baking soda on the brush, scrub bowl, let sit 10 minutes, turn water on, flush.

Pressure Washer/Carpet Cleaner: In cleaning solution chamber, fill with water and add 1 drop of Sal Suds. Add 1 c. (240 mL) vinegar to rinse water (optional). Use All-Purpose Spray on carpet spots (use sparingly).

Window Wash: (aka Sal Suds Lite) ½ tsp. (2.5 mL) in a quart (1 L) of water. Spray and squeegee. Follow with a spray of pure club soda, or half vinegar/half water, and squeegee.

Fruit & Veggie Wash: 1 drop of Sal Suds in a bowl of water. Dunk and swish the produce. Rinse in clear water.

Dishes (Handwashing): 1/2 – 1 1/2 tsp. (2.5 mL) Sal Suds in a large sink of water. Or 1 drop Sal Suds for one pot, more if needed.

  • So I don’t use too much, I keep a bottle of diluted Sal Suds by my sink: 1/2 c. (120 mL) of Sal Suds in a quart (1 L) of water. A small squirt in a pot or a larger squirt for a sink.
  • With All-Purpose Spray: Using Sal Suds to Clean Dishes

Mopping (Wood, Laminate & Stone Flooring): ½ Tbsp. (7.5 mL) Sal Suds in approximately 3 gallons (12 L) of hot water. 20 drops tea tree oil (optional). Dunk mop (microfiber, preferably) and wring thoroughly. On wood and laminate, avoid excess water and mop up wet areas

Cars: ½ Tbsp. (7.g mL) Sal Suds in 3 gallons (12 L) of water for exterior. Use All-Purpose Spray on interiro surfaces and leather seats. Wipe with damp cloth.

Patio Furniture: 1/2 Tbsp. (7.5 mL) Sal Suds in a bucket of warm water. Wash with sponge, microfiber cloth or stiff brush. Wipe with damp cloth.

Download a one-page copy of the Sal Suds Dilution Cheat Sheet.

If you have SLS concerns, check out this blog post: There is no Cancer Risk from SLS (Sodium Lauryl Sulfate)

 

491 thoughts on “Sal Suds Dilution Cheat Sheet

  1. Hi there. Do you have to rinse Sal Suds? If I were to wash my floor with a dilution, would I then need to go back and rinse it with water? Thanks!

    • Hi Emily- The dilution for floors is diluted enough that there’s no need to go back and rinse. Because the All-Purpose Spray is more concentrated, spray then wipe down with a damp cloth.

  2. Are all of your Castile soaps equal when it comes to laundry? I typically use the peppermint but could I use any of the scents with equal success? Thx in advance!

    • Hi Lynne- They sure are! Grab whichever scent sounds good at the moment.

  3. Hi Lisa – can I use a Sal Suds solution to kill ants and other bugs on my outdoor plants? If so, what dilution? Thank you.

    • Hi Helen- I’ve not tried Sal Suds on insects but recently heard from one reader that it worked on ticks, so it just might be effective on other insects. If you give the Sal Suds a try, I’d be interested to know how it worked out. I typically make an insecticidal spray with Castile soap. You can find that video here: https://www.lisabronner.com/spraying-for-garden-pests/ (Keep an out for an updated version soon.)

  4. Hi do you think this would work as a cleaner for gym equipment? I was thinking of switching over to a vinegar water mix but perhaps this is better? I’m just a little worried about drying out the vinyl/leather surfaces.

    • Hi Wayne – Yes, I think the Sal Suds would work great for gym equipment. It would do a great job at removing all sorts of grime, and would be safe on the leather and vinyl. The All Purpose Spray would likely be your best bet, or you could make a bucket of wash water with a dilution of 1/2 tsp in a gallon of water. Dunk in your cloth, wring it out and wipe things down.

  5. Hi,
    For the dishwashing liquid recipe…
    Dish washing by hand:
    Pre-diluted: (my preference) ½ c. Sal Suds in a quart of water in a squirt bottle…
    Is this 1/2 a cup of Sal Suds? It just seems like a lot. So I wondered if the ‘c’ might stand for cap full.
    Thank you,
    Claude

    • Hi Claude – Thank you for pointing out this confusion. We are clarifying on a new Cheat Sheet that will be up soon. What I keep by my sink is 1/2 cup of Sal Suds in a quart bottle filled with water. This is what I use for a sink full of dishes. I put a squirt of this dilution in the sink and it ends up helping me use less overall. There’s probably about 1/2 teaspoon of Sal Suds or less in that squirt I use.

  6. On the Sal Suds bottle it says for general cleaning 1.5 teaspooons per gallon of water (so 4 quarts) which means 0.375 of a teaspoon for a quart. On your recommendation you have 1 tablespoon per quart of water. Why are these so different?

    Also for the washing dishes the bottle says 1.5 teaspoons for a sink of dishes and your recommendation is 1/2 t. I quite honestly just squirt some in, but I was interested as to why there are differences?

    And lastly pre-diluted is your preference for hand washing dishes vs using the all purpose. The all purpose (your recommended dilution) is 1 T per quart and the pre-diluted 4 T per quart. Is this why your prefer pre-diluted? The all purpose doesn’t have enough suds in it to start?

    Thank you!!!

    • Hi Diana – I so appreciate your reading both of these so carefully! We’ve had several readers point these differences out in the past couple weeks. As far as why the difference, on my blog, I just share what I do at home, but I was not the one who wrote the label. Just for curiosity, we were trying to track down who did, and came up short, so I’m thinking it may have been my dad, well over 20 years ago. I think his solutions were a little too strong, though. We are revising the label now for the next printing, but it will be some time before these new labels make it on to store shelves.

      Here’s what the new labels will say:
      How to Use Dr. Bronner’s Sal Suds
      1. All-Purpose Cleaning Spray: 1 Tbsp. per quart of water; spray & wipe with damp cloth.
      2. Laundry: 2-3 Tbsp. per large load (half for HE machines); apply undiluted to stains.
      3. Dishes: ½ – 1 ½ tsp. in a sink full of water or 1 drop per pot.
      4. Mopping: ½ tsp. per gallon of water.
      5. For car washing, patio furniture and large jobs, ½ Tbsp. per 3 gallons of bucket of water.
      6. Fruits & Veggies: 1 drop in a bowl of water.
      7. Fill pressure washer/carpet cleaner with water and add 1 drop.
      8. Wash hard and soft surfaces – carpets, stone, wood, glass, stainless steel – anything that can get wet!

      As far as using the All Purpose spray for dishwashing, if I’m just washing one thing that’s not too grimy, like a cutting board for fruit or something, that spray is great. I think when I wrote that, I still had kids in highchairs, so I was often washing the high chair itself. Generally I’m washing more cooking pots or something greasy, and as you said, I like the greater concentration of the 1/4 c. in the quart. Like you, in practice, I just squirt some in until I like the amount of bubbles I get. I’ve had to quantify it for the blog, though.

      I hope that helps!

  7. Is there way to use Sal Suds or Castille soap in the dishwasher with/without dilution ? what would be the best dilution if so ?

    • Hi Esther- We don’t recommend either. You will find other customers who have found success in various formulas though. We have also heard stories of bubbles pouring out around the sides of the dishwasher. In the meantime, definitely use Sal Suds or Castile soap for all your handwashing dishes.

  8. Does anyone know if it would work to kill fleas like the castile soap does? Can we use it as a spray to kill bugs? Is it harmful as a flea shampoo for dogs?

    Thank you!

    • Hi Dorothy- Sal Suds can be irritating to the skin, so I wouldn’t recommend it. Castile is designed for the skin and makes a great dog shampoo.

    • Thank you so much Ms. Bronner for taking the time to answer my inquiry. I appreciate it.
      Without using it on flesh, do you know if it will kill bugs, like sticktight fleas and mange mites? That was one of my question.

      Thank you again.

      dorothy

    • Hi Dorothy- I’ve not found Sal Suds to be as successful as the Castile, but I did recently hear from a customer who found it killed ticks. If you give it a go, please let me know how it worked.

    • Dear Ms Bronner,
      Thank you so much for your reply.
      I was wondering, because I have sticktight fleas as a problem, and they are terrible. They are like ticks in a manner, so maybe I will try it, and if it works, I will let you know!

      I love your castile soap. I just bought 2 gallons of the peppermint. I use it all the time.

      Pax et Bonum,
      dorothy

    • Hi Jess- It sure is. With stone, the concern is acidic solutions, but this is alkaline.

  9. Thoughts on using a dilution to clean my bearded dragons enclosure and decor? I’m trying to find a natural way to do it that does not require bleach (often recommended but I would rather not pollute water and risk left behind toxins).

    • Hi Kestrel- Not ever having had a reptile in our household, I’ve not had experience with this myself. However, we have heard from customers that used Sal Suds for reptile and bird enclosures with no problem.

  10. Hi Lisa, I love Sal Suds! I’ve been using it for everything. I like putting tea tree oil in the mopping solution. I would also like to use tea tree and other essential oils for the all purpose spray and in my laundry. What amounts and scent combos do you recommend for those? Thanks!

    • Hi Tiffany- That’s great that you love Sal Suds! You can add 1/2 tsp, about 20 drops, of essential oils to a quart of the Sal Suds All-Purpose Spray. I’m afraid essential oils won’t have much effect in your laundry though. Sal Suds will grab onto the oil molecules and wash them away. To scent clothes, use a sachet in your dryer or place in drawers and cupboards.

  11. Hi, As a recent UK convert to Dr Bronner’s Castile Soap and Sal Suds, I have a question about Sal Suds All-Purpose Spray. A few hours after making a bottle of solution, it went cloudy and then finally cleared but with a white precipitate at the bottom of the bottle. Is this normal or could there be an issue with dissolved minerals, etc., in the water supply. I live in a hard water area and the water is chlorinated to 0.5 ppm, but not fluoridated. I do not get this issue when diluting to dish washing strength. Thanks for any advice you can give.

    • Hi Dave- It could be a matter of temperature. Sal Suds turns white and cloudy in colder temperatures, although this doesn’t affect its efficacy. Is the solution cold by chance?

    • Hi Lisa, The solution was made using lukewarm water and the ambient temperature is 64-68°F, so not cold. Since my post, I have been doing some more research and found an article referring to detergents reacting with dissolved compounds in water. I have made up a solution using deionised water and it has remained crystal clear, so I guess that’s the issue. Thanks for replying to my post.

  12. Hi,
    Well, it’s clear I can use Sal Suds on hard surfaces. Any suggestions regarding natural stone tile in the shower and grout?

    • Hi Lynne- The Sal Suds All-Purpose Spray (1 Tbsp. Sal Suds in a quart of water in a spray bottle) is fine to use on natural stone and grout. The issue with natural stones like marble and limestone is that they’re soft and they dissolve in acids. This is why vinegar or any sort of acidic cleaner is out of the question. Dr. Bronner’s products are alkaline, and thereby are safe for these surfaces.

  13. Hi I was wondering if anybody knew if you could wash shoes with this???

    • Hi Alex- Yes, if they are a material that can get wet, such as canvas or nylon. I use a semi-stiff brush or nubby rag, like microfiber, with some diluted soap – 1 drop of Sal Suds in a cup of water. If you have any concerns, test in an inconspicuous area first.

  14. How do you recommend I dilute Sal Suds for use on a car interior (vinyl, plastic)?

    • Hi Dustin- The Sal Suds All-Purpose Spray, which is 1 Tbsp. Sal Suds added to 1 quart of water, does an excellent job on car interiors. Sal Suds is great on the exterior too – 1/2 Tbsp. in a bucket of water.

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