Cloth Diapers: My Washing Routine in 7 Steps
Important: Let’s not forget also that cloth diapers are a long term investment (not as cheap in the beginning, but they are for sure in the long run). Here are some examples and links to prices so that you get an idea.
Step 1 – Spray it (for soiled diapers only)
Step 2 – Remove Inserts
At this point, you have some choices to make:
- If your baby is 10 months or younger, skip to step #5 – Wash. Baby’s pee at this age is very light, so most washing machines should be capable of handling it.
- If your baby is between 10 and 12 months or older, (and most likely peeing more), continue to step #3 Soak, or:
- If you believe you have a washing machine capable of handling heavily pee loaded diapers, skip to Wash.
Step 3 – Soak
- I plug the laundry sink’s drain, open both, hot and cold water, then I start loading it with the peed inserts. As I go, I throw the covers (pockets) into a five gallon bucket I keep by the sink. If you don’t have a sink, you can very well use a clean bucket. 🙂
- I let the water fill up to a point that totally covers all the inserts. I squeeze and swish them around inside the water with my gloved hands, (you could use a broom like stick of some sort if preferred) your choice!
- After doing this for a minute or so, unplug the drain and let the water go. Yes, the water will turn yellow. Yes, the aroma isn’t nice. And yes, it shows the importance of a capable washing machine, and/or of soaking and rinsing before the “wash” step.
Meantime, the covers in the bucket are obviously also peed, but they aren’t as absorbent, so I consider it optional to soak them before they are washed.
If you decide to soak the covers, I would do it separately from the inserts, or soak the inserts a second time, and put the covers in then.