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How do you launder??

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
I know everyone does something different to keep the smell down and to wash your diapers. I was just curious if you could share what you do. I'm just starting to look into buying things for this purpose. I was thinking of getting the mini shower and making my own wet bag. I plan on washing hot with ivory snow(how much detergent do you use??) and drying hot. Hopefully I don't get too many stains.

I know I have a lot of family and friends that are rolling their eyes at me because they say it WILL stink up my house and the diapers will get stained. Plus they are surprised I'm not using bleach. It's hard to know what to say when I don't have the answers yet. I usually reply we'll see.
post #2 of 15
I rinse the poopy diapers before I put them into a pail of cold water with a capful of vinegar. I also throw the pee pee diapers in there for a couple hours then I put them in a dry pail til time to wash. When I was I wash in hot water with 1/3-1/2 cup of soap depending on the size of the load of diapers, then dry in a hot dryer. I live in an apartment and have to pay $1.00 to wash and $1.00 for one dry cycle and several of my diapers dont get dry on one cycle so I hang dry them the rest of the way. I wash every 2 days. I use purex laundry soap with no bleach or era with no bleach and neither so far have bothered my daughers skin. I plan to strip the diapers bout every month or so with dawn dish soap and hot water, more if i need to. HTH
post #3 of 15

I hate laundry and my husband gags at the smell of dirty diapers, but we really haven't had problems with our cloth choice (were not into the really smelly poop stage yet though). Anyway, my baby is strictly breasfed so her poop is water soluable. I just throw all diapers into my diaper pail lined with a wet bag. I throw all my covers and pockets into a separate wet bag. In each wet bag I put a cloth wipe with a little bit of tea tree oil on it (cuts down on smell and bad stuff) When the diapers get full I I run a cold/cold medium/long cycle with half the reccomeded ammount of detergent, All free and clear (I've heard this leaves buildup if you have hard water, but we don't) and 1/4-1/2 cup of baking soda (if you have a smell problem you can sprinkle some in your pail after each diaper change). Then when thats done I run the machine on extra long hot/ cold adding nothing to them. IF the still smell (only happened once or twice) I add a VERY little bit of detergent and run it again extra long hot/cold. Then dump them in the dryer. With my covers I do the same first wash and then a short warm/cold wash and hang to dry. It's worked for me and I haven't yet had trouble with build up or anything.

The best advice I got from a website was when starting to wash, do something simple (just detergent) then slowly add stuff as you feel it is needed. That way, if your diapers aren't getting clean you can easily track down the problem. If you have a really complicated system to begin with and then have a problem it's much harder to find what isn't working.

Oh, and you shouldn't use bleach because it breaks down the fibers in your diapers, isn't invonmentally friendly (although i admit, I am a bleach user when I clean the bathroom) and it can be harsh on skin if not completely and throughly rinsed. Some people still use bleach though, I think there is a thread on it in the diapering section, just do a search if you don't see it.
post #4 of 15
Here's my routine, FWIW:

Rinse only the poopy diapers that REALLY need it. Some poop goes in the pail, I don't care if it's a little. I use a mini sprayer

Use a dry pail w/ a PUL liner. Liner has a microfiber square for tea tree oil, which helps the smell a lot

On wash day (every 3 days), put everything in the washer in a cold soak (I soak for an hour or so) with nothing in the water

Hot wash with 1 cap of sport wash and a few drops of tea tree oil.

dry on hot

wipe out pail w/ a wet cloth dripped with tea tree oil before putting in a clean liner

for wipes, i keep them in the warmer, wet, with a solution of water, soap, apricot oil, tea tree oil, and lavender oil.

I have heard that Ivory Snow is not great for diapers b/c it contains soap, but I don't think that's true. I myself would not use it because it's too scented for me and also expensive. You know what works great is store brand generic (like costco brand) or Tide. I like sport-wash b/c it leaves no residue and i don't have to double rinse.

We switched to cloth later in the first year, and let me tell you, disposables STINK way worse than cloth. There is no comparison really. Your family will see... cloth is not what people expect it to be!
post #5 of 15
I find disposable diaper pails to be MORE smelly than cloth. I actually don't use a diaper pail. I just toss the diapers on top of my dryer - out in the open, and wash every other day. DS is a toddler, so we have stinky solid food poop - sometimes it plops off in the toilet, and sometimes it's a teething poopy that gets partially plopped into the toilet, then thrown in the wash. I do a cold rinse to get rid of any remaining poop (I don't have any stains, but bf poo DID stain a bunch - the sun will get those stains out), hot wash with small amount of detergent, and then 2 warm rinses if I remember to fake the washing machine out. Otherwise the rinses are cold.

I use bleach once every couple weeks because my water doesn't have much chlorine in it, and I get hemp stinkies pretty easily. Bleaching takes care of it and hasn't done anything to my diapers. I just wouldn't bleach every load at full amount recommended on the bottle. I use 1/4 cup in a medium load.

Btw, stains don't equal dirtyness. Stained diapers can still be clean, and the stain is on the inside anyway - not where you can see it while the child is wearing it.
post #6 of 15
I keep my diapers in a dry pail and keep my PUL covers, pocket diapers (also PUL) and wool covers separately. The poopy diapers get dunked and rinsed in the toilet (I'm counting down the days until I can save up $35 to buy a mini-sprayer). I like to soak my diapers overnight, so I empty the full diaper pail in the washer filled with cold water and a quarter to half cup of baking soda. I also use a little bit of white king water softener since we have such hard water here. I let them soak all night long, and then the next morning (or later that afternoon, if I don't need the washer or the diapers) I spin out the machine. The diapers that I use meanwhile are also getting tossed in the washer as I go. I find that the soak helps to remove stains and odors. (But if I forget to soak and I NEED clean diapers, I just soak them for a few hours or not at all.) Then I run a hot/cold wash. I use the Sport Wash that has already been mentioned. I can find it at Sportsman's Warehouse in the rain gear section, or at Walmart in the hunting section. It says really big on the bottle "Scent Destroying Laundry Detergent", which is good for diapers! And it says it's safe for wool, waterproof fabrics, down, cotton, silk, etc. I also use it on my PUL covers, pocket diapers, wool covers, etc. ANYWAY, it only costs about six dollars for a bottle that does 34 wash loads (you only need a little bit), so it's about the same price or cheaper than other detergents, and I find it does a good job. In the wash load I also use vinegar in the fabric softener department. If my diapers get stained, the stains are usually gone within 3-4 washings using this method. Or in the summer, the clothes line in the sunshine is the best thing for stains and odors.

I dry them on hot in the dryer.

Now for the covers, I wash them separately since I read on the Bummis web site that you shouldn't use baking soda or vinegar on them. (if you eliminate the soda and vinegar, you shouldn't have a problem washing them with the rest of the diapers). I don't really wash covers very often since the wool ones are magic that way. My Bummis covers used to give me such a head ache. I got them second-hand and I abused them mercilessly before I became educated. They leaked like crazy and smelled horrible, even after being washed. But about 2 months ago, I treated them with Nikwax TX wash-in, and they have been awesome ever since. They are so waterproof that no urine soaks in and I rarely have to wash them. So when I do wash covers, I throw them in a warm/cold wash with a little bit of sport wash, and then dry them on low for about 20 minutes, thats all they need. My wool covers I wash by hand with sportwash (I haven't bought any wool wash yet), and then I lanolize them with Lansinoh dissolved in hot water (soak for about an hour), and then squeeze them dry in a towel and lay flat to dry. It sounds like such a pain, but it's really not since they don't have to be washed that often. I only wash them if they get poopie, if they start to smell, or if they start to leak (time for more lanolin).

Sounds kind of complicated, but it takes more time to type it out than it does to actually do it all!

BTW... when your friends tell you that your cloth diapers will stink up your house, smile serenely and say, "My cloth diapers smell a thousand times better than your disposables, but thank you for your concern."
post #7 of 15
disposables are WAY smellier than cloth.

I use a minishower (actually a kitchen sprayer attached to the toilet, works great!) and rinse off the poopies. I don't rinse the pee diapers. I throw everything into a 5 gal bucket with a Gamma Seal Lid (google it, it's pretty cool).

We wash every other day or every two days. I wash on hot/cold with 1/4 the regular amount of Tide Free. I use Clorox 2 and vinegar and a scoop of oxiclean. I wash all of it together, even though it's mostly Wonderoos (PUL), I have had no trouble with the vinegar affecting the PUL.

Then I dry on med or low, everything together, for 60-75 minutes.

I've been CD'ing full time for 18 months and have NO STAINS and NO ODORS, even though I use a lot of microfiber and hemp, they do not smell and at all. All seams, snaps, elastic, and PUL are in like new condition. My fleece is a little rough, but normal amount, nothing unusual for the age.
post #8 of 15
Check out the diapering forum.

Your diapers wont stink because
1. Your diaper pail will have a lid
2. You will wash away most of the poop before you put the diaper in the pail.
3. If they smell a little you will sprinkle the diaper pail with baking soda.
4. The diapers will be taken out and washed often.

Here's my wash routine
Pee-pee diapers go directly in the diaper pail. They don't really stink. Poopy diapers do stink. I drop any poop I can into the toilet. I soak poopy diapers in a little water for about an hour. Then I swish them around in the water and pour the water into the toilet. (I don't have a mini shower) Sometimes they need to be soaked for another hour. Then the diapers go in a diaper pail. The pail is a just trash can with a lid.

Every other day, I wash diapers. I put a sprinkle of detergent in the diaper pail and then cover the diapers with water from the hose. After a few hours I take the wet diapers to the washing machine. I use the "medium load" amount of detergent. I have soft water and it rinses away the detrgent easily. Ivory Snow is soap flakes I think. I'm not sure about Ivory Snow. I have been washing the diapers once. I may start washing them twice. I rinse with the hose water again. Today I added half a cup of vinegar to the rinse. Vinegar helps rinse out detergent and helps the diapers smell fresher.

I dry on a clothesline. They smell nice and fresh. The sun fades stains. Hot water and sunlight also kill germs, so bleach is not needed. Bleach can irritate baby's skin and it can ruin the fabric of your diapers so use it sparingly, or don't use it at all. My diapers aren't stained, but I haven't been cloth diapering for very long.
post #9 of 15
Originally Posted by boscopup
I use bleach once every couple weeks because my water doesn't have much chlorine in it, and I get hemp stinkies pretty easily. Bleaching takes care of it and hasn't done anything to my diapers.
Yep. I just did my first bleach wash and wow! My hemp was getting stinky when DD would pee on it, so I decided to try the bleach trick. Amazing. I used 1/4 cup in a supersize load of hot water. Rinsed twice. No smell on the hemp anymore when she pees. Very happy w/ the bleaching trick.
post #10 of 15
For washing I dump what is dumpable with poopy diapers, and with just wet ones or the already-dumped-poopies, they get tossed into a cheapie ol' trash bin lined with a Bummis wet bag.

Every other day I throw them in the wash with less than half the reccommended detergent (I use Sensi Clean... Katherine has issues with any detergent that has enzymes) and I dump some vinegar into the fabric dispenser hole (or you can always use a Downey Ball .... the vinegar in the rinse cycle helps to get rid of any residual soap on your dipes). Oohh... and I wash on hot. With an extra rinse at the end.

Then it all gets tossed into the dryer.

I really can't handle anything too complicated. I can't be bothered with presoaks or prewashes or anything like that. They get washed, they get dried. ... Then, like some other mamas, because hemp *can* get stinky (especially with toddler pee... gosh that stuff reeks) I'll occasionally throw in a splash of bleach. Nothing more than a small glug. I absolutely LOATHE using the stuff, but it works. And that's the ONLY thing I"ve ever bleached.
post #11 of 15
Where do you find sensi-clean other than online? I've been looking everywhere, no luck yet.
post #12 of 15
I've only found it online (I've gotten mine from http://www.diaperware.com) ... but I've also heard that Sports Wash is exactly the same thing, but with a different name. Many find it at WalMart even -- but make sure to look in the sporting goods department. It's often sold near the hunting supplies, since it's aimed at hunters who don't want any lingering scent of detergent on their gear. (thus, a clean-washing detergent with no smells added! pretty much what sensi clean is)

Plus, I see you're in Boise, so I would hope (at least in theory, since you're in the west... I'm in Wyoming ) that you might be able to find it too ... especially since it's hunting season for various game animals.
post #13 of 15
I'm a pretty lazy washer... Here's my routine:

all diapers and covers and cloth wipes get thrown into the diaper pail (a step pedal garbage can that cost us about $12 Canadian)

When the pail is full I carry the removable liner part of it with all the diapers downstairs and literally dump it into the washer.

I add my detergent (tide free or knock off store brand equivalent) right at the beginning and do a cold soak/ prewash cycle that soaks and agitates the diapers for a bit.

As soon as the washer has filled the first time with the cold water I hit the temperature button so that it next fills with hot water.

So then the regular cycle with hot water and a warm rinse runs.

Then I throw just about everything in the dryer.

I occasionally get a load that doesn't get very clean. At that point I throw a bit more detergent in (about half what I used the first time) and run them through a hot prewash, hot wash and warm rinse. That has always killed any smell.

Diapers in the pail don't smell yet at our house since baby is exclusively breastfed still.

Hope that helps!
post #14 of 15
Where do you find sensi-clean other than online?
Sensi-clean and Sportwash are absolutely the same product, I emailed the company(Atsko) myself a few months ago. I've found it at Wal-Mart, it is the only reason I go there. There was a post on Diapering last week that it was on clearance, so you might not find it there if you go. Or you might find a great deal!

And FTR, Ivory Snow does not contain soap, it used to but now it is a detergent. It is not recommended for diapers, I think it has softeners in it but I'm not sure about that.

Most people don't 'get' cloth diapers, they have no idea since they have not used them. Or if they did use them, it was plastic pants and pins and wet pails with a lot of bleach on laundry day. I think you are doing fine, just keep going and let everyone else find out the truth when you have been using cloth and your house doesn't smell and your baby is happy.
post #15 of 15
Originally Posted by Kari_mom
Sensi-clean and Sportwash are absolutely the same product, I emailed the company(Atsko) myself a few months ago.
Wow, that is good to know. I knew they were made by the same company, but had no idea that they were exactly the same. I already have a big bottle of Sport wash that I use. Now I'll just cross Sensi-clean off my eternal shopping list. Thanks!!
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