Bicarbonate of Soda

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Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby Helsbells » Mon Feb 11, 2013 6:08 pm

Everyone raves about how great this is and it has so many uses, cleaning teeth, surfaces, hair etc. I think it is great and use it to clean that bathroom, so I got to thinking about what I would do if I could no longer easily get my hands on the stuff and if I could make it myself, (thinking it might be from some kind of rock or something) I looked here http://www.ehow.co.uk/how_6752224_make-bicarbonate-soda.htmlbut it turns out that making it is a pretty complicated and dangerous process with some unplesant sounding leftover bits, definately not something you could make at home.

So I was wondering what people make of this, is it so eco friendly after all?
What could you use as an alternative if you couldn't get your hands on it any more?
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby diggernotdreamer » Mon Feb 11, 2013 7:44 pm

I use it too, my oven is sparkling clean from using soda to clean it instead of foamy oven cleaner which is really toxic, I know I can put the water down the sink and it won't harm my septic tank. It is available here in large bags and is labelled as bread soda, so it gets consumed in large quantities. I thought I being being eco friendly and now perhaps I'm not???
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby The Riff-Raff Element » Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:09 pm

From a chemist's point of view, it doesn't look that hazardous :mrgreen: Nothing particularly toxic and nothing to go bang.

I agree that the production is not totally benign, though neither is it too damaging. The process (called the Solvay process) uses quite low levels of energy, consumes raw materials that are available in plentiful supply and produces wastes that (unless one is completely negligent) should not be polluting. Compared to the alternatives (detergents and so on) it is pretty good.
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby Helsbells » Mon Feb 11, 2013 9:29 pm

That's reassuring Jon, thanks! Where do they get the raw materials do you know?
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby The Riff-Raff Element » Tue Feb 12, 2013 5:56 am

The basic inputs are salt (sodium chloride) and limestone (calcium carbonate). The process uses ammonia, but it is regenerated so only a little needs to be added to make up losses. The products are bicarb and calcium chloride, the latter of which is benign enough to be used as road salt or simply discharged to sea water (not fresh water - it would not be good in a freshwater environment).

I think some bicarb may still be produced by mining of soda ash (sodium carbonate, washing soda).
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby Annemieke » Sat Feb 16, 2013 8:51 pm

I happen to have rather a large jar of bicarb, bought for some recipe but I rarely use it. Am pleasantly surprised that it is good for cleaning: how do you use it, and what for exactly? And how long does it keep, do you know?
Thanks!
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby diggernotdreamer » Sat Feb 16, 2013 11:47 pm

I think it lasts ages. Uses are add a cup in the washing machine as a good degreaser and cleaner for very soiled clothes. if you have a glass oven door put some onto a damp cloth and rub, it will get all the grease off the door, use in the oven as well on the bits that aren't self cleaning, works really well and doesn't have the toxic stink of squirty oven cleaner. If you have jam jars you want to get a smell out of, soak them in a bowl of hot water with a couple of tablespoons of bicarb, usually does the trick. A good method to clean the drains and pipes, teacup of salt, teacup of bicarb pour down toilet or over plughole of sink and then add one teacup of vinegar to make a foaming bomb, leave up to one hour then flush or run water down sink. Keep a pot of soda in the bottom of the fridge as a deodouriser. Clean your teeth with it ....... the list goes on and on
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby The Riff-Raff Element » Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:35 am

Be careful to use only food grade bicarb for teeth, though: the stuff that you find in the baking section.

Make "Shake 'n' Vac" - add a few drops of essential oil to a jar of bicarb and sprinkle over the carpet before vaccing.
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby happyhippy » Sun Feb 17, 2013 2:58 pm

diggernotdreamer wrote:I use it too, my oven is sparkling clean from using soda to clean it instead of foamy oven cleaner which is really toxic, I know I can put the water down the sink and it won't harm my septic tank. It is available here in large bags and is labelled as bread soda, so it gets consumed in large quantities. I thought I being being eco friendly and now perhaps I'm not???

Hi DND,I've tried the bi carb on my oven before and did'nt have alot of success unfortunately.I tried applying with a damp cloth to no avail.Am I doing something wrong cause I'd love it to work? :iconbiggrin:
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby demi » Sun Feb 17, 2013 3:36 pm

I add it to tooth paste to whiten my teeth.
And i wash my hair with it- about 4tbsp mixed into a liter jug of hot water, pour over hair and massage in and rinse off well with warm water. You can then use a lemon juice rinse for conditioner.
I also use a deodorant bar which has bi carb in it, although i didn't make it, i bought it from LUSH and it's also paraben and SLS free, it smells nice, keeps you fresh as well as any regular deodorant and it lasts for ages. I bought this one in the summer and i'v still got half of it left.
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby diggernotdreamer » Sun Feb 17, 2013 4:32 pm

[ I
Hi DND,I've tried the bi carb on my oven before and did'nt have alot of success unfortunately.I tried applying with a damp cloth to no avail.Am I doing something wrong cause I'd love it to work? :iconbiggrin:[/quote]

Ooh I don't know what is happening there, i just sprinkle it on the inside of the glass door and then with a just damp cloth rub away at it, seems to cut through any grease, you do need a bit more elbow grease on the inside, if you have stubborn grease and burnt on stuff, I find a bohemian blade or a blunt stanley knife blade to carefully scrape it off.
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby The Riff-Raff Element » Sun Feb 17, 2013 8:31 pm

Myself, for oven cleaning, I use sodium carbonate (washing soda).
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby silly_sammy » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:22 pm

For toothpaste- use bicarb soda, water and a little coconut oil. Even a few drops of peppermint oil. or infuse some mint in the water beforehand. Teeth come out lovely!

Also great for homemade cleaners, getting the smell out of your wet dog, shake n vac, a paste of it applied on bites and stings. I love bicarb soda :cheers:

Also, I make all my own cleaners- would love to swap recipes or share mine with people :wave:
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Re: Bicarbonate of Soda

Postby Pumkinpie » Mon Jun 03, 2013 7:20 am

I found some sodium bicarbonate in the cupboard yesterday with a use by date of 2007.
It was dry and perfectly useable. So I gave some to my daughter to put in her recent e bay purchases
A fridge and freezer for her new house.
I think it's silly to put use by dates on things like this.
I am not one for throwing stuff out that's perfectly useable u never know when u might need it.
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