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Thread: How often do you wash your cloth daipers?

  1. #1

    Default How often do you wash your cloth daipers?

    Cloth diaper wearers, how often do you wash them?

    Someone on here said he washes them once or twice a week but doesn't that ruin them? I've been told leaving them soiled wears them out faster.

    Does soaking them keep them from wearing out faster or ruining them?

  2. #2


    I'd imagine just like any other garment of clothing, it will wear out after so many washes. However..... not washing them would be absolutely disgusting.

    Soaking them could work, too. If you used laundry soap and washed them by hand, that's gentler then the pulling the washing machine does.

  3. #3


    I was them every time I use them. Not very useful huh?

    Soaking them, and rinsing them helps, especially if you aren't washing them right away.

    If you are using them all the time, I would wash them every second or third day, depending upon how many you go through.

  4. #4


    Cotton lasts best when washed as soon as posible after being soiled. As a practical matter every other day seems to do no harm for diapers only wet. Messed diapers should be washed very soon, after a presoak.

    My family has been using lots of cloth diapers for decades. Our experience is that in the long run cotton diapers wear out faster if always soaked while waiting to be washed and dried. The presoaking might prevent stains, but stains do not do any harm. A pure white diaper does not absorb better than one which is slightly yellow or brown.

    One way to keep cotton whiter without harm is to dry in sunlight, but is the potential for embarrassment worth it?

    Almost always when wearing cloth diapers your waterproof pants will end up costing more per change. Consequently to keep them working and comfy longer, be sure to wash your diaper covers according to manufacturer's recommendations as soon after use as possible. What you are trying to avoid is letting oils remain in contact with the waterproof material any longer than necessary.

  5. #5


    I throw my nighttime cloth diapers in a pail with water and vinegar. I then wash them about once every four days. I used to not soak them, but every since I have they smell much better and I haven't noticed them deteriorating any faster. If you don't soak them in a solution, I would wash them every other day. Also, I usually put mine out on a clothes line in the Florida sunshine.

  6. #6


    I filled up a pail with wet diapers and washed them all when it got to make a load - washing machine, that is. For a while, when I lived in an urban area, I had a diaper service launder them for me - I owned the diapers and paid them to wash them. They wear out, for sure, but that's to be expected. I wish I was like Spaz and had a clothes line in the Florida sunshine to dry them on, but that's more for the Florida sunshine than for the clothesline!

  7. #7


    I usually have a load to do every day. It includes my night diaper, which consist of 3 of the night weight gauze diapers, and also usually two or three of my day diapers, which is just one night weight diaper with two small prefold baby diapers for stuffers and two flat gauze for liners to try to keep the big ones a little cleaner.
    We bought one of those front load washer and dryers, and it's a lot easier on the fabric, and it will hold six of the heaviest diapers without a problem, and that's including the stuffers and liners.
    They don't get completely white because I don't bleach them anymore. I found that the bleach will eat the cloth and leave you with rags. I tried hanging them out on the line, and in the Arizona sun will dry them really well, but they dry to a harder finish, or surface. The dryer will "beat" the material into a nice soft texture. When on the line, I noticed that the inner material has a tendency to clump up in the centers of the diapers, leaving these hard balls of material, and they hurt if you sit on one in the wrong place. The dryer seems to prevent that from happening. So even though the dryer costs me more, I find it's worth it in the long run.
    I do use fabric softener in the washer, as well as vinegar, as both help to keep the material nice and soft. And I've not noticed any lack of absorption in the diapers from the softener, like a lot of people say happens.

    I hope that helps.

  8. #8


    I read that fabric softeners reduce the absorbency in diapers.

  9. #9


    I wash my cloth diapers once a week sometimes twice, same as a diaper service would. They don't seem to wear out very fast.

    I use liquid Tide and Oxi Clean. I also spray poopy ones with Shout. I find it usually takes about three washes to get the smell out of the diapers. I'm looking for something that will work better on the poop stains so I just order some Bac-Out stain remover to see if that will work better on the stains and smell. I'll post here is it does.

  10. #10


    Sadly I don't have my own washer and dryer so it costs me 75 cents to wash and dry and no way am I going to keep putting quarters in to keep washing and drying. So I let my diapers hang dry after I take them out of the dryer. I throw a dry towel in there to they be more dryer when I take them out. I do soak them and keep dumping it out and wringing out the diapers and them putting them back in the bucket and putting water in it. It makes them cleaner when I do throw them in the wash. I am sure there is still some pee in them and the point of washing them would be to get the smell out and the rest of the pee and the washer does a great job wringing out the water.

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