There was an excellent and long (45+ pages) thread on this on the diaperswappers.com site (http://www.diaperswappers.com/forum/....php?t=1040786
) that you might want to check out. The highlights are that there is a website that posts recommendations for laundary detergents and ranks them and choosing any from that list is fine knowing how they are ranked (http://www.pinstripesandpolkadots.co...entchoices.htm
). I've cut and pasted the general wash routine here from that post at the end. I am about to try CD with a newborn for the first time hopefully within the next month and so I only have prepping experience. It seems that if you find what works keep using it and if all else fails boil the diapers OR put them into wash with a squirt of dawn detergent and hot washes to "start over." I guess that is generally what I learned from the postings on diaperswappers. Sorry no specific recs on which detergent to use here - but lots of people use a variety of cheap detergents because they have less ingredients which are better for CD! What I have not seen posted a lot about is the type of diaper you are using or diapers vs. covers washing. I bought some Nikky covers and will be using prefolds convereted to fitteds with all natural fibers so it seems the diapers should be washed the way the diaperswappers post reads but that the covers need more delicate care (gentle cycle, warm water, they recommended ecover delicate wash $5.29 on amazon or was it diapers.com or drugstore.com?) Hope this helps.
Q: What wash routine would you suggest for most people?
A: For MOST people with no particular problems and moderately hard water....I would suggest you shake off all solids into the toilet. Run the diapers through a rinse cycle on hot water, with no detergent. Then wash a full cycle with the detergent manufacturer's recommended amount of detergent, an additional tablespoon of washing soda, and a scoop of oxy clean. Run the cycles on HOT if you can, with hot or warm rinses. This may mean you have to run back and turn the dials on your machine in the middle of the cycle to force the rinses to hot or warm. Once the cycle is complete, turn the dial back half way, and run the cycle through a half cycle so that you get another couple rinses. You will have to modify this to work with YOUR machine, but the goal is to get a full cycle, plus a couple rinses. I have a FLer, so the extra rinses are important.
If you have a big Top Loader with extra rinses built in, you may not need it.
If you have soft water, drop the washing soda, and run a full extra cycle.
If you have ammonia, put vinegar in the pre rinse (1 cup)
If you want to use bleach, add it with the detergent, and add 1/4 cup vinegar to the normal rinse cycle (not the extra rinses)