Wednesday, May 2, 2012

For the LOVE of Cloth: Part 2 of 3

Yesterday I posted about the different types of cloth diapers and today I'm posting about how to wash cloth diapers! Fun stuff guys!

Here are some of the questions I often get:
  • What about the poop!?
  • How do you wash those things?
  • Do you put them in your washing machine?
Here's the basic run down of how to clean and care for your diapers.

Diaper Sprayer:
Photo found Here
These are lovely contraptions that attach to the back of your toilet and allow you to spray the diapers into the toilet for easy cleaning.  Some people get by without using one but I highly recommend either buying one or making one yourself.  They do run around $45 but it makes clean up a lot nicer. 

When babies are younger and are breastfed the poo is water soluble so you don't need to use a diaper sprayer until your baby is on solids. I would suggest having a wet bag in the bathroom once you start using the diaper sprayer, that way you will not have to drag diapers back and forth to/from the bathroom.

This is a big part of cloth diapering. If you use the wrong type of detergent you will get build-up and your diapers could potentially become ruined or at the least can cause your diapers to repel the liquid it is supposed to absorb. Check out this link for cloth diaper “safe” detergents.

I use a my own detergent recipe on the cloth diapers and I also use it for the rest of my family's laundry.  It's easy to make and lasts a long time! Another plus is that it is very cost effective and it is great because I know what is in it. 

Okay so if you ask ten different people how they wash their diapers, you will probably get ten different answers. It is really up to personal preference. I do the following:
  1. Cold rinse with just water
  2. Hot wash with detergent of your choice.  *DO NOT use any fabric softeners!
  3. Additional rinse (Make sure to check that there are not any bubbles left!)
Every four months or so  I "strip" my diapers just to make sure that they are not getting detergent build-up on them. There are multiple ways to strip the diapers but I usually do the following:
  1. (Start with clean diapers) Cold rinse with just water
  2. Hot wash with 1 tablespoon of Dawn (the original blue liquid)
  3. Additional rinse (You will want to check during the rinse to ensure there are not any bubbles- if there are, rinse until they are gone)

You can either dry your diapers in the dryer on the coolest setting or line dry them. DO NOT use any dryer sheets because they will cause build-up on your diapers and they will repel water (aka pee!) If you want, you can get dryer balls or use tennis balls in your dryer to help "fluff" them up. They are not really necessary though!

Where do I keep it all?
So where do I keep all of the little beauties? After I wash and dry all of the diapers I stuff them (remember I have mostly pocket diapers) and then I store them in two baskets under Everett's changing table. 

Here's a picture of where I keep eveything... in the highchair on the left there are cloth wipes and water (in the wipe container) and the bucket below has burp cloths. The black trashcan is for disposable wipes and the occasional disposable diaper. The tall laundry basket in the left corner is for E's clothes. 

On the changing table: The top left basket has extra inserts, creams, lotions, thermometer, etc. The top right basket has covers, prefolds, and disposable wipes (for poo).  The bottom baskets house all the diapers! Finally, the white trashcan has a large wet back and holds all the dirty dipes!

Hope that all makes sense! Come back tomorrow for the final installment of For the LOVE of Cloth!! :) 

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