Cloth Diaper Washing Instructions

Congratulations on your Happy Flute cloth diaper purchase.  You found the best value in cloth diapering.  They are more absorbent than diapers 2 or 3 times their cost.  The guide below will help you get your new purchase ready for your little ones and then establish a great routine of storing dirty diapers, washing, and finally drying the diapers so they are ready to use again.

You shouldn't feel intimidated or overwhelmed by cloth diapering, it just takes a little effort.  If you have any questions; please contact us on facebook or use the contact us button on the bottom right corner of the screen.

 

Preparing your brand new diapers for their first use.

Cloth diapers not only need to be cleaned after every use, they must be prepared for the first use.  You want to make sure your new diapers are ready to absorb.

Charcoal AIO diapers, charcoal inserts, and pocket diapers (inserts removed) :

 Wash once in warm water using a regular cycle and a quarter of the normal amount of detergent.  If you only have one or a few diapers to prep, these can be thrown in with your normal laundry.  When finished follow the normal drying routine listed below and your diapers and inserts are ready to use.

Cotton AIO diapers, heavy wetters, pure bamboo inserts, and hemp inserts:

Cotton, bamboo, and hemp contain natural oils that need to be removed for maximum absorbency.  Wash five times in warm water using a regular cycle and a quarter of the  normal amount of detergent.  If the new diapers load is 25% of your normal load size, then use 25% of the detergent. When finished follow the normal drying routine listed below and your diapers and inserts are ready to use.

pro tip: if you follow the routine above and your diaper still is not absorbing as you expect, wash twice in hot water then wash two more times using a different detergent and a water softener.  We use Borax as a water softener, which can be found for under $5 at most major discount stores and a box will last for 50 loads.  Look for it in your store's household cleaning products aisle.

Storing soiled diapers

When storing a soiled diaper, just remove any solids from the diaper by shaking over the toilet and then store the diaper in a trash can or bucket (you want something with a lid) until you have enough diapers for a load.   If a diaper is wet from urine, it doesn't need to be dried before moving it to the storage container.

pro tip: A step trash can works best for cloth diapering.  They can be found for under $20 in many stores and being able to open with your foot was feature was great when holding a soiled diaper in one hand and a child in the other.

Normal wash routine

Once you have enough diapers for a normal load or four days has passed since you put the first diaper in the soiled diaper container, whichever is first, you are ready for a normal wash.  Rinse the diapers once with hot water and no detergent and then wash warm with half your normal amount of detergent and then finish it with another rinse cycle.  Rinse-wash-rinse.  If your washing machine has the ability to do a heavy duty cycle, we recommend that you not use it because the higher heat and faster spin speeds can damage your diapers.  A normal wash cycle is the preferred method.

pro tip: if you have velcro diapers, fasten the tabs before washing so the diapers don't fasten to each other while washing.  The tabs are meant to fasten to each other for washing.

 

Drying diapers

Always line dry your diapers to extend their life.  The high heat in the dryer can damage the waterproof outer layer of the diaper.  You can find a compact drying rack for under $20 at most stores, but line drying indoors or outdoors also works great.  Once the diapers are completely dry, you can fluff the diapers on low heat for 15 to 20 minutes.  

Detergents and Additives

We feel that most detergents are safe for our diapers as long as they are free of fragrances, bleaches, and perfumes, but some may work better than others.  Our recommend brands are Tide, Cheer, Gain, and Kirkland (Costco's store brand).  Detergent is picky about the machine it goes into and the water it mixes with, so if you are unhappy with the results of your detergent, feel free to try one of our recommend brands.  

Avoid using bleach on the cloth diapers

Avoid fabric softeners and dryer sheets as they can cause irritation for your baby and stick to the fibers in your diaper, causing it to be less absorbent and repel liquids.

Water Softeners are okay and 100% diapers safe.

Stripping Diapers

Over time you may notice that your diapers aren't as absorbent or may have an unpleasant oder; we recommend that you strip your cloth diapers.  This is similar to the prep routine and will remove anything trapped in the fibers of your diaper and remove any detergent buildup that could be causing your diapers to have less than ideal absorbency. Just wash three times in hot water with a normal cycle and no detergent, wash once in hot water with water with half your normal detergent then rinse in hot water again. then dry and they are ready to use. 

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