With #DayZero on the horizon, we are all doing our best to save water. But what about the laundry piling up? The washing machine is no longer an option with water restrictions of 50 litres per person day.

While some  Capetonians are in denial about ‘Day Zero’ – there are other water savvy people who have got the grey water system down to an art form. Saving water is an ‘effort’ but it’s the kind of ‘effort’ we all have to make during this trying time.

So many eco-friendly washing machines are being sold, not everyone can afford to buy these new nifty gadgets. Nobody really budgets for a water crisis. It’s time to get creative!

Here are a few steps on how to make your own ‘water saving washing device’. All you need is two buckets and you can use your greywater to wash your clothes. The trick it o add huh soda ash to the water, which is safe for your skin and clothing.

You will need:
2 x 20L buckets
2 x Toilet Plungers
A sharp knife for cutting

Cut away the inside flap of the plunger.

 It’s best to cut hole along edge of the plunger, to prevent over soapy water.

Remember to use grey water to fill your bucket. (Don’t worry, your soda ash will clean the water). The load amount will determine how much water to use.
You may now add your detergent (See DIY below) and a load of washing.

Before placing the lid back on, cut a hole on top of it, big enough to only slide the handle of the plunger through. This is to prevent any spills and splashes. Consider getting a longer handle, so your back won’t take any strain.

Now the work begins. Apply some old fashion ‘elbow grease’ and plunge in an up-and-down motion for 5-10 minutes. This is also a good work out for your biceps.
Wring out washing, and hang.

DIY Detergent:
1 part natural soap (coconut based)
2 parts soda ash (hth or Blu52 brands) (Made of 100% sodium carbonate, this is the easiest way to balance the chemicals and make your water safer and cleaner)
2 parts fine salt

Finely grate your natural soap, either with a grater or food processor. The finer you grate your soap, the more readily it will dissolve. Add all ingredients together and mix thoroughly.

Use 1/2 cup of the mixture for small or lightly soiled laundry.

No mouldy smelling clothes. No extra rinsing to get rid of all the soap suds. Should be hypoallergenic for eczema sufferers too.

Pictures: Facebook and Pinterest


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