Washing diapers in hard water. - Mothering Forums
Diapering > Washing diapers in hard water.
ancoda's Avatar ancoda 06:39 PM 11-21-2012

I cloth diapered my two youngest when we lived in Oregon where the water was not hard at all.  Now I am living in Texas. We are expeting another little one next March and I have been told that many of the things I did in Oregon are very big no-nos when you have hard water. 

So for any mom's that have to deal with hard water what is your diaper washing routine?



Some examples of things that I was told not to do here are to use vinigar on stink- it will just make it worse.  I was also told that using oxiclean in hard water can also hurt things more then it helps. 


Any help is greatly appreciated.

loveandgarbage's Avatar loveandgarbage 06:51 PM 11-21-2012

I'm not sure if I can be that helpful-- but I have washed cloth in hard water and it was difficult to find a washing routine that worked. First you need to find a detergent that works with hard water. I tried purex free and clear, plain tide, allen's, country fresh, and others I'm forgetting... and then I found Crunchy Clean on Etsy: http://www.etsy.com/listing/37440481/cloth-diaper-detergent-regular-size?ref=sr_gallery_1&ga_search_query=crunchy+clean&ga_view_type=gallery&ga_ship_to=US&ga_search_type=all


I think a MDC mama might've recommended it actually! With a good detergent, this was my routine that mostly worked:


cold soak in plain water

cold wash cycle with soap

hot wash cycle with soap

rinse cycle with tea tree oil and sometimes lavender

(sometimes) final rinse cycle


And then if I hung them to dry in the sun I avoided most smells/stains. However I hope that another mama posts on here with better ideas because doing THAT many cycles was a chore and also drove up our water bill. I'll be dealing with this again soon so I want to know if there's a better way, too!

Mama2mc's Avatar Mama2mc 11:13 PM 11-21-2012

We have very hard water, and have to use calgon in every load, but it leaves diapers (and clothes) very clean, it really makes a BIG difference. Oh, and we use Planet as our detergent.

ancoda's Avatar ancoda 08:20 AM 11-22-2012

Thank you both.

nstewart's Avatar nstewart 08:49 AM 11-22-2012

We have hard water as well.  I used Rockin' Green detergent.  They even have one for hard water called "Hard Rock".


I would just do a pre-rinse cycle on hot (I might add Borax or washing soda), and then a cycle with the Hard Rock, and then an extra rinse.  I would dry on hight heat.  We just used prefolds, and I'd hang the covers to dry, so I didn't have to worry about damaging my dipes by using hot temperatures.


I didn't have stink.  Sometimes I'd have poo stains, so I would either sun bleach the dipes from time to time or do a cycle with a bit of bleach every few months in the winter.

Tags: Diapering