Please tell me what else I can try? - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 09:10 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Hi, I'm sorry if this has been posted about a ton already. I'm sure it's a hot topic.

Our FB constantly have stink. Often it's a dirty, dingy, almost poo-ish smell. All the time there is an amonia smell. So do the inserts. So do the prefolds I use to stuff some of them.

This is what I have tried:

-stripping with Dawn
-using RLR
-washing several times in hot, hot water (I have to add boiling water to the frontloader. I think our hot wash doesn't get any hot water, since it uses minimal water and at the sinks it takes a while for hot water to flow.)
-using Calgon
-trying different detergents: from soap nuts to Charlie's to Crunchy clean to Mountain Baby
-leaving outside on the line during several days of both sun and rain

Please help. The RLR and clothesline treatments showed some improvement, but we're nowhere near where I think we should be.

Many thanks in advance for your thoughts.

P.S. This is making me want to use prefolds and covers for LO #2. The prefolds seem easier to get clean, but what a waste on the investment in my FB stash.

Loving DH :, chasing DS (3/08) and getting to know sweet DD (born 3/10 at home).
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#2 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 09:34 AM
 
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Try prefolds and covers!

I absolutely HATE synthetics for diapers. Fastest way to stink and rash (for us anyway) Prefolds are so simple to keep clean and way easier than they seem. You can always sell off your stash and probably come out ahead!

(But before selling you can bleach your inserts)

mama to L (4) and G (1.5)
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#3 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 09:37 AM
 
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I found this out accidently. I decided to make my own detergent & diaper detergent. The 1st time I used it on the dipes, it was a miracle. they smelled new again It was to the point where I had to hold my breath when I was putting dirty dipes in the wash, After the 1st time I tried my new diaper detergent, the dirty dipes didn't even have a strong odor at all!!!!
So here it is: 1cup oxy clean free, 1 cup washing soda. Then just use 1/8 cup in hot wash. (I believe you can also add 1 cup borax to this, but I didn't since I have some hemp dipes, and borax is bad for them)
I have FB,HH,hemp prefolds, and indian prefolds, all of which smell wonderful!
It super easy & super cheap

Unvaxing, Breastfeeding, Cloth diapering, Mama cloth loving, Passionate about all things natural Mommy to CJ-8/03, AG-9/05, JJ-6/08. And married to my best friend Feb.2005!
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#4 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 05:34 PM
 
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Originally Posted by 3lilpunkins View Post
I found this out accidently. I didn't since I have some hemp dipes, and borax is bad for them)
I

Can you enlighten me as to why borax is bad for hemp diapers?? Thanks!

MB, mama to three, soulmate to one, pioneering cloth to many since 2002!
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#5 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 05:41 PM
 
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Have you tried baking soda? Also, you could try soaking the insets in vinegar. It's not recommended on microfiber by all manufacturers, but I know of some where that's the only thing that worked. Trying it on one or two may be a good idea in case it makes the microfiber smell more.

I also have an HE machine, and find that it's helpful to do a cycle w/o detergent to rinse and then another cycle with detergent. Not sure what your current routine is.

Mom to my 2 girls (11/06 and 12/08)
owner of Snooty Booty Diapers~ use code "mdc" for 5% off your order!
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#6 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 05:42 PM
 
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Really I tried everything soaps, softeners, rinses, stripping, prefolds and covers, flats, pockets, and more.

I have tried all type and brands of soap. I have ordered it online, I have driven to the big city, I have pulled my hair out. Then another momma here suggested Tide. I hate that it works but it does.

You don’t owe them an explanation, just a response.
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#7 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 07:36 PM
 
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Yup, I use Tide. It works. It really works! If it weren't for Tide I wouldn't be cloth diapering.

mama to L (4) and G (1.5)
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#8 of 20 Old 09-18-2009, 08:37 PM
 
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Two suggestions, mama...
1) Tide. It works wonders keeping dipes clean
2) Occasionally I wash with vinegar and salt. I don't do this all the time bc vinegar is very acidic, and I'm concerned for my washer. Dissolve 1/4 cup salt in warm water. Add 1/4 cup white vinegar. Use in place of your detergent--
Good luck,
~maddymama
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#9 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 12:08 AM
 
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Lingering smells are from bacterial infestations. They need to be killed. You can use a detergent to cover and mask those bacteria along with their smells and stains, but they will eventually bubble to the surface causing the same problem. Disinfect each time. If you have hard water, consider using a water softener like sodium tripolyphosphate (STPP) to clean the minerals and let whatever detergent you use perform better. Water softeners aren't all that necessary if your detergent does nothing but coat the diapers in a pleasing perfume oil soothing oil, though...but that's not technically clean. Then again, neither is it clean if you've got stains and bacteria. It sounds like a water issue.
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#10 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 12:13 AM
 
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I hate to keep saying this in every thread, but.... bleach.
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#11 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 06:29 AM
 
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Yep and Yep. The bacteria are living in detergent residue.

Try a little bleach for quick, effective stripping but do not bleach too frequently.
Wash with powdered Tide as it rinses better, maybe boost with 1T oxyclean.
Dry on high or in the hot sun.

I use a dry pail; pre rinse on cold in HE washer; run a hot wash/cold rinse with detergent; repeat w/o detergent; dry.

You don’t owe them an explanation, just a response.
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#12 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 09:54 AM
 
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Tide? Really?

I just came to Mothering to post that I'm giving up on cloth diapers. Tide? Is it really that easy?

What kind of Tide? I have powdered Tide sitting in the laundry room right now, but it's the usual heavily scented stuff. Does it need to be unscented?
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#13 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 11:02 AM
 
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Originally Posted by ShareBear View Post
Tide? Really?

I just came to Mothering to post that I'm giving up on cloth diapers. Tide? Is it really that easy?

What kind of Tide? I have powdered Tide sitting in the laundry room right now, but it's the usual heavily scented stuff. Does it need to be unscented?
Nope. You want plain old original Tide. If it's liquid, it's blue. You don't want unscented, or tide "free" or anything. Plain. Old. Tide. Powdered is fine. Use about half the amount it says to use for your load size.
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#14 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 02:35 PM
 
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We've been using mostly pockets for over two years now....

It doesn't look like you've tried using a water softener yet. Try washing them in Calgon (I use the liquid) water softener. If you have bubbles, you have detergent residue. Let the machine agitate a bit after adding the Calgon, then open and look for bubbles. Run them through with the Calgon 'til the bubbles are gone.

When mine start getting stinky, I do this:
1. Wash all the inserts (only inserts) in cold water with some bleach. Then wash with detergent and double-rinse.

2. Wash all the covers with Calgon. Double-rinse and dry as usual.

I've only once had to use Sensi-Clean in addition on the covers/pockets -- but I have to run it through three cycles afterwards to get whatever is in Sensi-Clean out well enough that it doesn't give dd2 a rash.

I use Charlie's for my diapers -- my cousin uses Tide, but I think that's one reason her diapers seem to leak a lot more than mine do. Everyone's water is different, though.

Not all who wander are lost.
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#15 of 20 Old 09-19-2009, 09:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by CtaylorS_3 View Post
It sounds like a water issue.
I had a stink problem before I moved (where I had a toploader). In my new area, my neighbor uses Charlie's with her frontloader on her FB and says she doesn't have a problem with stink.

We had someone come in to test the hardness of our water and it's slightly hard...

Honestly, when I use a bit of bleach, the diapers smell like bleach and stink... both.

Thanks, elanorh. I have tried Calgon. But maybe not enough of it?

P.S. This is my current routine:

cold light wash with cold rinse
1 Tbsp Charlie's for hot wash cold rinse (about 1/2 the time I add 1/4 cup baking soda to this step)
(I have to wash several more times in order for the diapers not to be *foul*. But I only use Charlie's for those washes.)
Sometimes I do one of these washes with soap nuts, just to try something new.

When I've done hot water stripping or Calgon, I don't see bubbles.

Thanks.

Loving DH :, chasing DS (3/08) and getting to know sweet DD (born 3/10 at home).
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#16 of 20 Old 09-20-2009, 03:37 AM
 
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OK - here's what I would try:

1. Calgon wash (I use the recommended amount on the bottle, a capful).

2. Bleach your inserts.

3. Wash your next load with HOT water and use a full scoop of Charlie's. They used to say to only use a half scoop, but then they changed to recommending 1 scoop, and they recommend doing: cold rinse, then hot wash/double rinse, then hot wash/double rinse. I was having stinky diapers too while using a smaller amount of Charlies....

If you're not seeing bubbles, you're not dealing with soap buildup. You're dealing with bacteria in the inserts/covers. So, if the above doesn't work, you probably need to either try RLR again, or Sensi-Clean. I think some people use Bac-Out too? But I've used Sensi-Clean.

I don't know how much help this is - it looks like you've tried all these before, too. But maybe another whirl will do it for you.

Not all who wander are lost.
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#17 of 20 Old 09-20-2009, 06:57 PM
 
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I second the Tide recommendation.
For major stink, if you're at the end of your rope, try this

*wash with regular Tide to the 1 line. Some like liquid better, some like powder better.
*Run another whole cycle (wash/rinse) without detergent.
*Repeat wash/rinse cycles without detergent until the suds are gone (or there are very few.)

They should smell a heck of a lot better, if not totally stink free. If they aren't totally stink free, do this again at your next load.

Before the first time I did this, my diapers stunk a lot. It took a few washings (using the diapers in between) to get totally stink free, but they were GREATLY improved even after the first time.

After I do a major Tide wash, there is no smell at all in the pee diapers, even after he's worn one all night long.

Becky, partner to Teague, SAHM to Keagan (7yo), Jonah (2yo)
 

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#18 of 20 Old 09-20-2009, 08:19 PM
 
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Bleaching the inserts might work as well as putting the pocket in the sunshine.

Once in awhile I bleach my inserts which seems to help.

Try adding Bac-Out? One more thing to try. Sorry this is hard.
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#19 of 20 Old 09-20-2009, 10:02 PM
 
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Oh man, I'm having the same problem. Only it's all my diapers... pockets, AIOs, and prefolds. The prefolds stink just as bad as the others. I tried washing in extra hot water with more soap and a few extra really hot rinses. It seemed to help a little, but it's back now full force. My next step was going to be to boil them with a little Dawn... but regular old Tide? Really? We use Tide Free right now, Purex Free and Clear before that (my store stopped stocking it, so we had to switch).

Mallory. Happily married to Joe since 6/25/05. Loving my adventure with my girls, Owyn Samantha, born 3/1/09. dust.gif and Greta June, born 11/2/11  babygirl.gif

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#20 of 20 Old 09-21-2009, 06:16 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by Mal85 View Post
Oh man, I'm having the same problem. Only it's all my diapers... pockets, AIOs, and prefolds. The prefolds stink just as bad as the others.
You know what? My prefolds are pretty stinky, too. But the FB get that dirty smell. Everything smells like ammonia. And after a day in the sun, the prefolds do smell much better, where the FB inserts and shells still retain the stink.

Thanks for the suggestions!!!

Loving DH :, chasing DS (3/08) and getting to know sweet DD (born 3/10 at home).
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