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Talk to me about HE Washing Machines

484 Views 2 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  Leisha
Hello! Okay, we just moved into a new house and the existing w & d are on their way out. I have purchased a "new" GE HE w & d from Craigslist (yay!).

What do I need to know about washing cloth dipes in an HE washing machine?

We use only prefolds, PUL covers (mostly hand washed though), hemp inserts, microterry inserts, and cotton velour/microfleece wipes. Everything is placed in a dry pail and sprinkled w/ baking soda. Dirties are spritzed w/ diluted Bac-Out. We use Country Save laundry detergent.

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It is all-the-more important with an HE washer to have a good-rinsing detergent. Make sure you use one that's water soluble. I use Charlie's because I tested a scoop (= 1T) in a jar of water and 5 minutes later it had dissolved. That convinced me that even with the smaller amount of water that is used in an HE washer that the detergent would dissolve and get rinsed out without leaving residue. You don't want to use a less water soluble detergent and just use a smaller amount because reducing the amount of detergent can lead to other problems-- like bacteria build-up. This is what I did initially with our cloth diapers and HE washer (I used Tide) and it caused BIG problems. I think you can get away with less picky detergents with a regular washer that you can't with an HE washer. I think Country Save should be fine, but trial and error is really how you find out.

I don't know if Country Save is powder or not. If it is (I use powder), then I recommend running your rinse first and THEN adding your detergent right to the washer instead of putting it in the dispenser. Our washer manufacturer told us that powders don't always run through well and can clog the pipe that leads from the dispenser to the washer. It means you can't take advantage of just adding the Pre-rinse option to your hot wash (I do Heavy Duty), but it's worth it in my opinion.

All in all, I don't mind washing diapers with an HE washer. I've figured out a system that works and I LOVE the HE washer on our clothes and bedding! Hopefully you'll get your own system worked out soon!
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Thanks for starting this topic, OP!
And Brietta, thanks that's interesting, I'm gonna test my detergent to see how good it dissolves!
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