Monday, February 20, 2012

My Cloth Diaper Wash Routine

Well it’s that day again. That day I look forward to every other day. My day of organization. My day of routine. My day of fresh clean smells … well, by the end of the day anyways. It’s diaper laundry day! Don’t ask me why I love diaper laundry day. I actually hate doing any other type of laundry. Weird huh? There’s just something about it that makes me happy. It’s my little Zen time. I just get in the routine and I go. Plus I love sorting through all of my Lincoln’s cute little fluff.

In honor of diaper laundry day I thought I’d share with you my diaper washing routine. I know everyone has their own groove that works for them, but this is what works for me and I’ve used the same routine from day 1 of cloth diapering without any problems.  No buildup.  No Stinkies.  And I rarely have any stains.  Can't get any better than that.

Step 1: Make sure all hook and loop closures are fastened to their laundry tabs and all inserts are removed from their pockets. If your child is to the point of eating solid foods then make sure that all poop is sprayed off of diapers. I always complete Step 1 after each diaper change.

Step 2: Remove pail liner of dirty diapers from diaper pail and put extra pail liner in diaper pail so it’s ready for the next diaper change.

Step 3: Dump diapers out of pail liner into washing machine. Turn pail liner inside out and put into washing machine. I do all this without ever touching a diaper or the inside of the pail liner.

Step 4: Set washer to highest water setting. Set temperature to cold. Run a rinse cycle.

Step 5: Keep washer set to highest water setting. Set temperature to hot. Set washer to run an Extra Rinse Cycle. Add Tide Ultra Original Scent up to the “2” line (quantity will vary depending on your washer and water type). Run a super wash cycle.

Step 6: If you’re still trying to figure out your detergent quantity level then check on your diapers during the agitation of the Extra Rinse Cycle. If you see suds then you’ll need to run another Rinse Cycle. This will also tell you that you need to use less detergent next time you do diaper laundry. Repeat this step if you still see suds during the next rinse cycle. Keep repeating till there are no suds. Once you have your routine down you can eliminate this step and just do it periodically.

Step 7: Hang dry all diaper covers, All-In-Two shells, and pocket diapers. I actually have a wire shelf in my laundry room that I dry all my diapers on. It helps to save the elastic by laying them flat instead of hanging them to dry. Once in awhile I’ll lay them in the sun outside to get all the stains out and brighten everything up.

Step 8: Throw all the All-In-One diapers, wipes, inserts, liners, doublers, wetbags, & your diaper pail liner in the dryer. Make sure that no PUL is exposed (turn all wetbags, diaper pail liners, and AIO diapers right side out). Set dryer to 45 min on Medium heat. If you want your diapers to dry faster you can throw in some dryer balls or a dry towel. Note: Do NOT use dryer sheets!!!

Step 9: Remove wetbags & diaper pail liner. Note: If everything feels dry at this point then you’re finished. Normally my AIO diapers, thick cotton inserts (GroVia snap in inserts), and hemp inserts will need more time.

Step 10: Set dryer to 45 min on Medium heat. If anything is still wet after this then I lay it out on my 
wire drying shelf. 

Step 11: Fold all wipes, stuff all pocket diapers, and organize all doublers and liners. When putting away all my diapers I rotate all the old diapers to the front and the newly washed diapers to the back. This keeps all my diapers in rotation and keeps my favorite diapers from getting worn out because I use them too much. 

So that’s my diaper wash routine. I’ll admit that even though I love diaper laundry day I still don’t keep on top of it like I should. Life gets in the way and I usually end up folding, stuffing, and putting away my diapers the next day or even the day after that when I start the next load. I guess that’s what happens when you have as many diapers as I have and can afford to have a whole set of diapers out of rotation. Does that mean I have too many diapers and a diaper addiction? Haha! Yeah, probably.

I’d love to hear about your diaper wash routine. I know everyone’s routine is different and it’s always helpful to hear about different routines till you find one that works for you. You can post your routines in the comment section below. Thanks for sticking with me through this journey and I hope you’ll join me again for more Adventures In Fluff.


  1. Thanks for admitting to using Tide (and a whopping dose of it, too!) It's nice to see I'm not alone ;)

  2. New follower stopping by from the Make Your Morning blog hop! Have a good day!

  3. I read an article that said the tablespoon or whatever people are using is crazy. That's not going to get your diapers clean. Believe me. You're not alone. There are lots of us Tide lovers out there. : )

  4. I do largely the same thing, except I use Rockin' Green. I've been getting poop stains, though, so I have just started using Bac-Out. Last wash, I tried just adding it to the pre-wash, but that didn't help any of the set stains come out. I pulled everything out of the washer, set aside the ones that had stains, poured Bac-Out directly on them, let them soak in cold water for an hour or so, and then washed them again - they came out white as can be! I'll probably be doing that from now on until I have no set stains, and then maybe I'll just be able to use it in the pre-wash to prevent stains in the first place.

    From this post, I've learned to turn all my pocket diapers inside out in the dryer - never thought to do that - and that I can eliminate the second rinse I always do if I check on suds in the first rinse cycle. Maybe I'm not using enough detergent in the first place and that's why I'm getting stains - what do you think? I've just been afraid of using too much because I recently had a repelling issue and had to strip.

  5. I've heard great things about Bac-Out. I've heard if you spray it on each diaper before putting it in the pail it works wonders. I've heard mixed reviews on Rockin Green though. I really love my Tide, so if you ever want a change I'd try that. I strongly feel that most problems with cloth diapers lie with the detergent.

  6. New follower from this morning's hop. I'm in awe of cloth diapering mamas! Happy Monday.

  7. Hi Chana! Nice to meet you! Congratulations on being the featured blogger at the Make My Morning hop! I enjoyed reading about your adventures with cloth diapering. I get a weird sense of satisfaction from doing laundry're right about there being something Zen about folding little clothing! LOL

    Anyway, I'm a new follower from the hop, and it's nice to meet you! I just spent quite a while looking around on your site! I enjoyed the DIY projects sewing machine and I are just getting back on speaking terms, so I'll need to try some of your tutorials!

    I write a humor blog about all things motherhood, and I'd love for you to drop by sometime! It's great for laughs, and sometimes even a snort or two!!

    Have a great week!
    Smiles, Jenn @Misadventures in Motherhood

  8. Thanks for stopping by and following Jen and Susan! I hope you like it here. I just followed your blogs as well and can't wait to check them out next time I feed Linc (that's my blog reading time).

  9. My wash routine is amazingly similar to yours, except I wash every other day - that schedule is how I convinced hubby that cloth would work for us. I could go longer now that he's used to it, but I would have to get a bigger pail...

    I also use a squirt of Original Blue Dawn whenever it's an extra poopy load. I use Tide too - it's my favorite. I do use less than you do, but I get the feeling my loads are probably smaller, so that's normal.

    I never thought to turn the pockets inside out - great tip! I'll be doing that now. I usually find that the kids need me whenever I'm switching laundry, so I think that's why that time seems so harried to me. I should take more time to switch all my loads to make sure stains are out, things are flipped the right way, etc.

    Thanks for sharing! Oh - and I'm feeding Will right now, I totally get the blog reading time feeding!

  10. Stopping by from make your morning blog hop! I always intend to line dry all of my diapers and most of my inserts, after all, that's why we hung up a wire shelf in our laundry room. However, I generally don't actually finish washing the diapers until I'm ready to crash and feeling far to lazy to hang them up, so they end up going into the dryer. I'm much better in the summer! Happy MOnday :)

  11. Haha Joanna! Glad to know I'm not the only one bloggin' it up while feeding.

  12. Stopping in from Make My Morning. My kids are long out of diapers, but I am sure there are plenty of Moms out there that will benefit from this post!

  13. New follower from Make Your Morning blog hop~ Love the blog!

  14. Shannon I agree. The days get too crazy!

  15. Hats off to you! Cloth diaper-using moms never fail to amaze me. The zen-like experience in baby clothes folding? I totally agree!

    I'm your newest follower. Have a great morning!

    Would love to see you at Cure for Mondays.

  16. Dropping by from the Make My Morning Hop! New GFC follower! Can I get a follow back please? Thanks!


  17. I applaud your diapering addiction and wish I could be so green!

    I'm here to Make Your Morning (afternoon)--may I have a follow-back? :)


  18. I wish I could be so green--what a great addiction to have!

    I'm here to make your morning (afternoon)--may I have a follow-back?


  19. Wow! You certainly have the patience to do all that for your dear baby. I didn't :D so I used nappies for my boy.

    I salute you Chana ;)

  20. Does the tide build up on the diapers or have you ever had a problem using it on the cloth diapers? What made you choose tide and not be afraid that it would harm the diapers?

    1. I did TONS of research before choosing my detergent. It seemed to be one of the biggest key factors in cloth diapering working out well or not. I was so close to getting one of the "cloth diaper safe" detergents, but after so much research pointing to the idea that these detergents really didn't work, I ended up going with Tide. Soooooooo many cloth diaper users before me had tried every detergent out there only to one day end up with Tide. That being said, I've only recently had a problem because I accidentally bought the scented version. Once I realized the problem I did several hot washes and I'm back to my super clean diapers. I've been using Tide for almost 16 months now and I would never even think of using anything else.

  21. Does the Tide build up on the diapers? Have you ever had a bad experience using it on them? What made you choose tide?


Thanks so much for taking the time to show your support with a comment! I LOVE reading all of them and will try and answer any questions that you might have. :)