He did well; five years later, his sons Harry and Philip Jr. were working for the firm, and instead of selling bulk chemicals, they were packaging them. During the 1920s, P. W. Drackett and Sons was the nation's largest manufacturer of medicinal quality epsom salts.
About 50 Drackett salesmen carried glass plumbing around so they could do dramatic demonstrations of Drāno's action in department stores and in home shows.
Drāno also contains salt which has been dyed. It does little to open drains, but is added for psychological appeal.
As laundry soap was replaced with laundry detergent in the post-WWII years, the Windex's formula changed as well. The new Windex was mostly water, with small amounts of sodium dodecyl sulfate (an ionic surfactant) and solvent. The product was colored blue for consumer appeal, and packaged in glass bottles with an attached sprayer. Although this formula was cheaper to produce, the large amount of water requires users to polish the glass for a longer time as they dry the window, resulting in better results.
The greatest difficulty in reformulating Windex was finding a proper dye. Many dyes were tried, but they would either fade in a few weeks, or else they would stain the window frames. After spending thousands of manhours developing the proper dye, the patent attorneys revealed exactly what dye was being used when they filed for a German patent - and Windex's competitors all had the trademark blue appearance within months.
Drackett emphasized packaging, and bought major positions in companies that made sprayers, aerosol valves, and a contract packer of aerosol products.
Other companies were quick to hop on the soy bandwagon, either to sell to Ford or to follow his lead with this exciting new technology. Archer-Daniels-Midland built facilities in 1933 and MacMillan changed his plans, founding Central Soya in 1934, instead of the Central Sugar company based on sugar beets he had planned only a year earlier.
Drackett raised soybeans on his farms, invested heavily in soybean crushing mills, and produced a variety of products ranging from dog treats to sponges made from a soybean plastic.
By 1940, Robert Allen Boyer, head of Ford's industrial soy applications research, had developed a synthetic wool made from soybeans, and as Ford was importing 125,000 short tons of wool annually from Australia and Argentina, and World War II threatened that supply, Ford pressed forward with promotion of the fiber. Soon, the sidewall upholstery in Ford autos was a 25% soy wool 75% sheep's wool blend - but when Ford was unable to convince the armed forces to use soy wool for uniforms, he sold his fabrication process and machinery to Drackett in November, 1943 Boyer was part of the deal; he became director of research at Drackett.
Drackett couldn't make soy wool commercially feasible, either. In 1947, Boyer wrote an article for the Soybean Digest titled "A Modern Shirt from Ancient Soybean," summarizing this work.
Boyer wanted to develop food products made from soybeans. Drackett was only interested in industrial products. In 1949, Drackett sold their soybean operations, and Boyer left the company.
After years of trying to find someone who could buy the entire company, the company was sold to S. C. Johnson & Son in 1992. As expected, the Federal Trade Commission had anti-trust concerns and ordered Johnson not only to divest itself of the Behold and Endust furniture care products and the Renuzit air freshener products within 12 months, but to seek prior approval for a decade before acquiring another furniture care or air freshener company. They placed the furniture brands with Sara Lee and the air freshener with Dial, and were released early from the prior approval requirement. Johnson has since jettisoned some other lines, such as Twinkle metal polish and O'Cedar handle goods.
Drackett's Professional Products Division, established in 1968 to market to commercial and institutional users, was retained as a separate operating unit in Cincinnati. In 2002, Johnson bought DiverseyLever. Their professional brands division and Drackett's were folded together to form JohnsonDiversey Consumer Branded Professional Products.
At Ohio State University, one of their dorm buildings is named in honor of Harry R. Drackett, since he attended the Ohio State University and served as president of the University Development Fund.