How to Wash Cloth Diapers
Perfecting a wash routine that works for you can be a daunting task, but it starts with these simple steps!
Once all your diapers are prepped as per the manufacturer's instructions, wash them all together on your regular laundry days.
- Start with a cold rinse.
- Follow with a hot wash using the recommended amount of detergent.
- End with another cold rinse.
Set your machine to the highest water level possible. If you have a machine that uses autosense to determine the amount of water it uses, add a towel or two to bulk up the water to diaper ratio. The more water, the better!
The cold rinse is an important step in order to remove any residual nastiness before the wash. Setting the washer to the longest agitation possible helps get as much rinsed as possible. Cold water also helps to avoid stains.
The hot wash is key to help the detergent work its best. Do NOT set your machine to "sanitize" setting, as it is much too hot and may void the warranty and prematurely break down the diaper's fibers and elastic.
Are you seeing bubbles at the end of your final rinse cycle? Cut back on the amount of detergent you are using.
We recommend Nellie's Detergent. Some conventional detergents are fine for cloth diapers but you want to avoid detergents that contain: dyes, perfumes, enzymes, softeners, fabric enhancers and/or optical brighteners. Many of these irritate baby's bottom and/or coat your diapers and keep them from working efficiently. Avoid fabric softeners.
We recommend air drying all covers to preserve the life of the elastic, which can be shortened in the heat of the dryer. Inserts and prefolds can be dried in the dryer. If you are finding your dry times to be long, try adding dryer balls to shorten dry time.
Tips and Troubleshooting:
- Do your diapers stink even when they are clean? They likely have a buildup of detergent or ammonia. Try stripping your diapers with RLR Laundry Treatment or Rockin' Green Funk Rock.
- Stains? Try drying your diapers in the sun or using the Nellie's Stain Stick.
- Diapers leaking? It might be a result of your wash routine. Feel free to contact us for help!