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Date: 20 November 2022. Dawn Detergent.


Recently I have been watching YouTube videos on my nifty tablet. The ads are annoying. Various Dawn products are being promoted heavily, power-wash and foaming cleanser to name two. I have been using Dawn dish detergent in many ways. Today I will show you how to easily create my most utilized cleaner. Best of all, this is both cheap and simple.

Please purchase Dawn Platinum dishwashing liquid. Platinum is a highly concentrated version of the everyday Dawn dish soap.

When living aboard a boat, storage space is limited and thus valuable. One thing I do to solve this issue is purchase condensed products. Dawn Platinum is the most concentrated Dawn currently available. It is four times as powerful as the regular Dawn. I willingly spend my perfectly good money on Dawn Platinum 4x and urge you do the same.

Both Dawn and Joy dish detergents will suds-up in salt water. That is why they are so popular among boaters. Our family believed Dawn
was the best. Bruce Van Sant (author of
The Gentleman's Guide to Passages South and Tricks of the Trades) was an advocate of Joy.

Dawn at anchor in remote areas is lovely. In out of the way places fresh
water is usually in short supply. Wasting fresh water simply is not done.

When fresh water is in limited supply old timers used to wash dishes in salt water. We used either Joy or Dawn dish detergent. After the dishes were clean, a quick rinse with fresh water was done.

Go to the Dollar Tree store where prices are $1.25 now. That place carries several
types of spray containers. THIS ↓ 16 ounce spray bottle is the one you should buy:

These bottles are available in blue, clear, pale pink and soft grey.

At Dollar Tree I have seen four different sprayers for sale. You want the specific one shown above. It is 8" (20cm) tall and holds one pint of fluid.

Why I am particular about the sprayer: A larger one found over by the mops in Dollar Tree holds a quart of liquid. That one has a trigger that snaps off. The shorter fat sprayer has a black nozzle that leaks. There is also an aluminum one however I like seeing what is inside my bottle. Thus, I recommend these particular sprayers shown above.

Any bottle with a Spray setting will work at least until it breaks!

Like all sprayers, the bottles have four settings: Off, Spray, Off and Stream. Please set yours to Spray.
These setting marks are difficult to see. They are in raised text on the end of the nozzle where the fluid comes out.

ADD 1/2" (15mm) ↓ of Dawn Platinum to the spray bottle. Because this is a concentrated detergent, you do not need much. TRUST ME!

One half inch (15mm) of Dawn Platinum really is enough. I PROMISE! In this case, more is not better.

Now FILL ↓ SLOWLY the sprayer to the top with water. Adding water too
quickly will result in bubbles everywhere. Do not ask me how I know that.

Voila. You are almost done. Get out a permanent marker and write DAWN along of the top edge of the nozzle so you won't
forget what potion you have made. Also be sure to shake your bottle a few times so that the detergent mixes in with the water.

Now you might be wondering what you will do with your handy-dandy Dawn
sprayer. Here are some of the ways I have found to utilize my spray bottles.

I rinse then spray my pans and plates after eating. This spray begins the
process of loosening food particles. Washing up later becomes a breeze.

This is my favorite Christmas plate. The yellow is supposed to be there. Made in
 Bavaria, the plate is old and in my opinion beautiful. Dawn helps keep this plate clean.

I am fortunate enough to have a watermaker thanks to a reader.
Thank you again Cap'n. You made a huge difference in my life aboard Seaweed.


The brine from my watermaker discharges into the sink down below in my head. After making
water I like to wash out that sink. A quick Dawn spray followed by a thorough rinse keeps the sink clean.

The brine from the watermaker exits via the white PVC apparatus. Most folks use a thru-hull
fitting above the waterline. I prefer this set-up because it is simple and serves the purpose.

Out back, the night herons necessitate the need for a spray to clean up after then do unspeakable things
in my cockpit. I keep one spray bottle inside my starboard side locker in the cockpit for bird poop removal.

This is my Buddy. He is the reason a Dawn sprayer is in the cockpit.

When the solar panels get dirty or dusty, a spray of Dawn helps loosen the the grime. Then a quick rinse with fresh water and all is well again.

I have the hardest time eating spaghetti neatly. Most of the time I get a drip on my shirt. When I later take off the shirt I
will spray the sauce stain with my Dawn concoction. Dawn lifts oils so this pre-wash treatment helps prevent permanent stains.

I believe all of us have seen videos of ducklings covered in oil being cleaned using Dawn. The same principal is involved here. Dawn is an amazing grease cutter!

My galley sink seems to be a magnet for grease. When washing dishes the Dawn spray uses less soap. It also spreads the soapy goodness further.

I give a couple of squirts to my sponge when I am washing dishes.
In the galley I use the sprayer instead of bar soap for washing my hands.

When working in the bilge I use a combination of the Dawn spray and hand sanitizer to remove icky
stuff from my hands and body. A rag will wipe off the grime that Dawn and hand sanitizer has loosened.

Old shirts are cut into pieces to create disposable work rags.

Using what I have on hand like old shirts as work rags means I am not spending perfectly good money to buy paper towels.

Summary: Purchase Dawn  Platinum and a spray bottle. Then add a VERY small bit of the concentrated dish detergent to the container. Fill to top with water. Set the nozzle to Spray, not stream. Now when you need to cut grease, remove a stain from clothes, clean grime, presoak dishes, scrub your sink, wash your hands, and loosen oil during those unfortunate bilge projects, a refillable spray container is available.

I initially had just one sprayer and kept down in my head with the other cleaners. Now I have three scattered about Seaweed.


This project may seem silly. I promise that if you try using Dawn in a spray bottle you will be pleased. At this point I have one bottle in my head, another out back in a cockpit locker, and a third in the galley. For me, having tools where I need them translates to projects being done.

When I had only one sprayer and had to go down into the head I would not always do so. I usually regretted this choice. Items would be harder to clean because I had waited. I would like to believe I am a lot smarter (or more efficient) now with extra spray bottles right where I need them.

Thank you for being a part of my world. Thanks too for reading.  

Do you have any cleaners that you go to almost all the time for a multitude of uses?
And, what is your favorite dish washing detergent? Dawn? Joy? another???

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2022, 2023

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