Keeping those diapers clean.

4/27/2014



One of the scariest parts when I decided to cloth diaper was how to get and keep them clean. If you look online there is an abundance of information out there, and it can become quite the heated debate. I want to make it very clear that this is what works for our family, and that may not work for everyone. I by no means am claiming to be the know all by writing this series, I am just letting people know what we have found to work.

Storing Soiled Diapers
First I want to talk about what you do with the diaper after it comes off the butt until wash day. If it is just a pee diaper I un-stuff our diaper and put it into the diaper pail. If it is dirty I un-stuff it (if I can without getting poop on myself) throw the insert into the pail, and take the diaper to the bathroom where I use a diaper sprayer and spray pal to rinse it off. I then put the diaper into the diaper pail. You can also use a liner, and 'plop' the poo off. A lot of times this will negate the need to rinse at all. It is also important to know that if you child is EBF there is no need to rinse the diaper. Breast milk poo is water soluble and breaks down in the washer, while regular poo can clog and ruin the washer.

Washing & Drying
On wash day I take the wet bag full of my dirty diapers and empty it into the washer, I then flip the wet bag inside out and throw it in there as well. There are tons of overpriced "cloth diaper" detergents but I have found tide cheaper and way more effective.  I have never had an issue with stink or build up as long as I use an ample (typically to the max line) amount of detergent. It is very important when picking a detergent that you choose one without fabric softener, brighteners, enzymes, or scents, as this can also cause build up. For my wash cycle I set my HE front loader to the heavy duty cycle with hot water, not extra hot because that can be to hot for the PUL. I start with a prewash (my washer does this in cold), run my cycle with hot water, then set an extra rinse to make sure all the soap is washed out.
To dry my diapers I hang them on a clothes line outside. The sun exposure takes staining out and keeps them nice and white inside. My inserts I dry in the dryer like a normal load of laundry. In the chance that for whatever reason my diapers cant dry outside or on the table I will run them in the dryer on air dry, never do I expose them to heat.

Cloth Diapering Out Of The Home
When we leave the house I start by packing diapers, a wet bag, and disposable liners. Disposable liners are a liner that can be placed in the diaper closest to the babies skin. The pee goes through them but they hold poo. After use the liner can be flushed (according to packaging), but we just throw ours out. This makes dealing with poppy diapers without access to a diaper sprayer a lot easier. If I have access to a bathroom I take the liner and dispose of it then place the diaper in a wet bag. If I do not have access to a bathroom I just place the entire diaper in the wet bag and deal with it when I get home. It really is simple, and not nearly as hard as I imagined it to be.

Used Diapers & Stripping
Buying used diapers may sound disgusting, and I definitely was hesitant at first but there is a process that makes this not an issue. Stripping is the removal of build up and bacteria/germs in a diaper. This can be done for used diapers, if you have ammonia issues, your child is experiencing some sort of rash, stink, or other possible issues.
There are many ways to strip your diapers, but the easiest is with bleach. All you need to do is buy sanitizing bleach and have a place to sanitize. Either a bucket or the bathtub could work depending on how many diapers you are sanitizing. Create a water/bleach mixture according to the directions on the back of the bleach (it is a VERY small amount, so be careful), make sure to mix the water and bleach extremely well as this will prevent fading/bleaching of the colors on your diapers. Soak the diapers for at least 30 minutes to an hour. Then rinse, rinse, rinse! Then possibly rinse again, just to make sure.


2 comments

  1. Yay, another Tide mommy! "Cloth safe" detergents never worked for us!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! Love how clean my (ehh, Lillys) diapers smell when they come out of the wash.

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