Thursday, September 24, 2009

Washing Reusable Nappies is As Simple As 1 2 3

I have many parents who ask what the best way to wash their reusable cloth nappies is. Generally parents get their own routine after a time but to start with they may be nervous about using cloth diapers. So I decided to break down washing into a simple to understand step by step guide which will hopefully answer your questions. If you have other questions that are not covered in this, it pays to contact the manufacturer of your product.

Step one: Removing the nappy
Firstly you must take the soiled nappy off your baby. Use an old ice cream container in which you can place any soiled diapers and used wipes in while you pop the clean nappy onto your baby.

Solids in the nappy? Then you must dispose of all solids in the toilet (this is the case if you are using a disposable nappy as well) If you are using flushable liners, carefully remove the liner from the inside of the nappy and flush the liner down the toilet. If you are using reusable liners, take the nappy and the liner into the toilet and hold the re-usable liner in the toilet and flush the toilet onto it to remove any solids that are on it. Then wrap the liner up in the nappy ready for washing together.

Step 2: Dry Pail your nappies
Now days we do not have to soak our reusable nappies because the detergents and machines now do the work that our soakers used to do. If parents do soak their nappies they may wear the elastics and fabrics out earlier than expected because some of the soakers can be quite harsh on some modern fabrics. This is why we suggest using a dry pail which is simply a dry bucket with no water or soakers in it. This is also much safer for baby (no buckets of water around) and will save you from lifting heavy buckets into the washing machine.

Step 3: Wash the nappies
When you have a load of used reusable nappies or perhaps less but are ready to wash them, tip the contents of your bucket into the washing machine. To minimise the amount of washing, save more money and to lower the reusable diapers eco footprint, some parents will put them through a rinse cycle first and then add all of their babies other clothes into the same cycle. Some washing machines even have a special cycle just for nappies.

When you wash your nappies you only need to use a fraction of the amount of liquid / powder you would normally use to wash your clothes. We suggest around 1 - 2 tablespoons. Pop this in your machine as per your manufacturer's instructions. Turn the machine on and.....walk away....the machine does all of the nasty work for you while you have time to spend with your baby and family. Step 4: Drying your nappies
Once your machine has completed the task of washing your nappies (wow that was easy), it is time to dry them.

You can pop them on the line to dry with the rest of your washing and then walk away and let the sun dry, bleach and sanitize them while you spend time with your family. Or if you are short of time, you can tumble dry the diapers on a cool setting but we do recommend line drying wherever possible. Line drying saves you money and reduces the eco footprint of a reusable nappy.

Step 5: Folding your nappies
This is the best part, you take your diapers off the line or out of the drier and you pop them in your chosen storage place near where you change your baby they are all ready to go - NO FOLDING involved leaving you time to do many other things or sit and enjoy the evening on the couch!

Step 6: It is so easy!
It may have all sounded a bit ominous when you first start researching using reusable cloth nappies, but when you consider that:
- you do not have to use all of the nasty chemicals you may have thought you would have to use
- the nappies are likely to be far simpler to care for than you were led to believe
- Plus you will save thousands of dollars over a 2 - 3 year period so you would be crazy not to give it a go!