Washing Diapers

Updated on August 21, 2006
T.S. asks from Houston, TX
11 answers

Help!! I'm having issues with my cloth diapers. I looked up washing methods on several websites but my diapers are not doing so great. The diapers are pilling up & they are very stained. I do have very hard water but use vinegar in each rinse cycle. Any suggestions are greatly appretiated.

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answers from New Orleans on

I used cloth diapers with my daughter and had only a few stains that didn't come out. First, I too used the little liners for the pooh. I also rinsed the dirty diapers out in the toilet. Then in my diaper pail I let them soak in a solution of water and Borax (very inexpensive, and I believe it has directions on it for diaper pails and washing diapers). I washed in HOT water w/ Dreft, Borax and Biz. I also hung them out to dry (the sun does bleach them). I also, if they were still stained, made a paste of all three, water and just a little bleach (not enought to irritate the baby) and rubbed on, let it dry and rewashed.

I hardly had any problems with stains with this method. My mother used cloth diapers with my baby brother and I learned the tricks from her.

Hope this helps,

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answers from Baton Rouge on

I have had the most success with putting my diapers outside in the sun for a few hours to remove stains. I have also used Oxy Boost (oxyboost.com)and it worked well. The pilling usually goes away after a few weeks if you have new dipaers. I read somewhere that the vinegar is good but if you use too much or too often it can cause your diapers to smell. The detergent you use can make a big difference as well. Different diapers do better in different detergents. For example, soome covers and diapers have build up if you use the free and clear detergents. Of course any detergent with a brightener, softener or bleach is usually a no-no. Several of the moms on one of the Yahoo Groups boards recommended Charlie's Soap (not really soap) so I have ordered some to try. Good luck! I know how frustrating it can be!

1 mom found this helpful


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answers from Corpus Christi on

Although I didn't use cloth diapers, Twenty Mule-Team Borax (1/2 cup in the washing machine) has worked wonderfully with clothes soiled in toilet training accidents. Heavily soiled items can be soaked from 30 minutes to several hours. I drain the water and then wash them with Purex and another scoop of the borax.



answers from Fayetteville on

Hey, I use disposable diapers, so I don't know exactly what they are called, but I've seen these 'liners' that are cheap, and go inside the cloth diaper...that would help a little I think.
Research it online...that's where I had seen it before.



answers from San Antonio on

I did not use cloth diapers although when I considered it for our first child I got a lot of information from a family member who did use cloth diapers.

She said they tried many different ways but what ended up working best was this: They had a bucket (maybe a small plastic trash can or something of that nature) in the bathroom that they filled with water and a soap solution. After changing a diaper if it was just urine they would put it directly into the bucket of water, if it was a BM they would empty it into the toilet and then put the diaper into the bucket with the soap solution.

Every several days or so (depending on how fast you go through them) just put the soaked diapers into the washing machine and start with a fresh bucket of soap solution. This way from the moment the diaper is soiled and changed, it is being soaked in a solution that is already working on cleaning the diaper. This would cut down on stains and help with smells.

It may be worth a try ... let me know if it works!
A. Black :-)



answers from Houston on

Dear T.,

I'm sorry I'm responding so late - I just got this post. We sell cloth diapers through our family business, and get to field all sorts of questions with cloth diapers. My husband has become quite the expert, which is pretty funny. If you still haven't found the help you need, feel free to call and ask for Mark - ###-###-####. He's a great problem solver (he used to be an electrical engineer but we laugh now at his new area of expertise - nursing bras, cloth diapers, etc). There's tons of info on our site that may help, but I'm not sure what kind of diaper you're dealing with. I hope you get the help you need!


Supporting you as you nurture your family.



answers from Houston on

What do you mean 'pilling up?' Have you tried tea tree oil? Sunlight (Hanging them out to dry) will help w/the stains.



answers from New Orleans on

I've never used cloth diapers, but Oxyclean gets out anything.



answers from Austin on

Hi T. S
Apply some hand wash soap all over the stains and keep it like that for 5 minutes and wash in hot water, the stains will go away. It works very well for me



answers from Little Rock on

My great-grandmother used to flush them in the toilet (hanging on to one corner) and then wash them.

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