DIY “Enzyme” Cleaner – Effective?

Enyzme Cleaner 001edited re-sized

Friends and their helpers who have used this DIY cleaner have given their thumbs-up for its cleaning power in the bathrooms and kitchens.  Many bloggers have waxed lyrical about how wonderful this cleaner is and about its multifaceted purposes.

My own experience with an enzyme cleaner was with a commercial brand which my kind sweet neighbour shared with me when our cat started marking our carpets. Her cat was old and causing much grief since she was urinating in different areas of their carpets at home. It worked. Stench away! Currently my dog has been under a cloud of dermatitis problems so we have been cleaning our floor with just water. With a grand-baby on the way, I decided to give this “miracle” DIY Enzyme Cleaner a try.

Photo above shows my first attempt – I had doubled the recipe using a combination of pineapple skins, orange and lemon peels. Patience is required as it is a 3-month fermentation period before the concentrated filtered end-product is ready for use.

A very simple recipe which uses fruit peels. Fruits are good for us even down to their peels! Just 3 simple ingredients.

  • 100 gm brown sugar
  • 300 gm fruit peels (friends have suggested pineapple skins make the most effective cleaner)
  • 1 litre of water

Cleaning is effective but don’t expect heavy duty commercial cleaner power.

 My helper has used a 1:10 dilution ratio of cleaner to water. She has attested to it being on effective daily cleaner for stove tops and walls in the kitchen – it does cut the grease.  The suggested ratio is 1:20 for cleaning the floor. If the floor is extra greasy due to a fair amount of deep frying, try using  perhaps a 1:5 ratio.

The caveat for its cleaning power – it is effective for daily cleaning but once a week or fortnight she uses a commercial cleaner to do a very thorough job.

To reduce the fermentation process from 3 to 1 month.

Add 1 tsp of dry yeast to the above 3 ingredients was the suggestion made by a blogger. Click

This blogger also commented that :-

  • it is the alcohol created by the fermentation and the terpenes in the citrus peels that does the cleaning
  • enzymes are not created from fermentation of citrus fruit peels.
  • A reservation was made whether fermentation of pineapple skins can create protease, the enzyme.

Hmmm… could it be that that is why a friend said to use pineapple skins for greater effectiveness? I needed to have an answer since it will help those of my readers who have pets at home and pets do have accidents.

I have on hand some gelatin sheets and my first batch of this DIY cleaner ( made from a combination of pineapple and citrus peels). For a firmer gelatin dessert, I normally use 6 to 7 sheets of gelatin for 500 ml of liquid, as it will allow the addition to some canned fruits.

DIY Enzyme Cleaner edited re-sized

STEP 1. in each of these Pyrex bowls, I added a sheet of gelatin and 60 ml of water so that an even firmer gelatin will be created. I microwaved the bowls to melt the gelatin. Cooled the bowls for about 15 mins.

DIY Enzyme Cleaner 003 edited re-sized

STEP 2. Once different proportions of DIY cleaner were added to bowls 2 and 3 (as marked in the photo above),I stirred to mix well. I cooled them for further 20 mins and then refrigerated them to set the gelatin.

DIY Enzyme Cleaners edited re-sized

STEP 3. After an hour and a half in the fridge, all the liquids in the 3 bowls jelled. Does this simple experiment prove that fermentation of pineapple skins does not produce protease and hence, this DIY cleaner cannot be called a DIY enzyme cleaner?

Must it be brown sugar?

From my own experiment I used white cane sugar for fermentation of pineapple skins (alone) and neither my helper nor I detected any difference in fermentation nor its cleaning power.

Is it effective for removing blood stains and stench from pet urine? 

Biological washing powders contain protease and lipase to remove protein stains and fat/grease from clothes. The enzymes break down proteins or fats on the fabric, forming water-soluble substances that can be washed away.

Click this link for more detailed explanation

I don’t have the answers and my little experiment with the 3 bowls of gelatin seem to indicate that no protease can be present in the fermentation of the pineapple skins.



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