Cloth Diaper Washing 102: Troubleshooting

by clfreestoneboopbaby

If the basic rinse-wash-rinse using the FULL recommended amount of a MAINSTREAM detergent isn’t cutting it for you here are some tips.

Ultra Hard Water?
Consider adding a water softener like Calgon, Washing Soda, or White King Powdered Softener. This is especially helpful in places with iron hard water. I highly recommend mineral stripping periodically as well as described here.
HE Machine giving you trouble?
Some HE machines do great, others kind of just swish the diapers in this case consider adding a wet towel for more agitation (it will NOT add more water, that’s a myth but it can help scrub the diapers).
Crunchy Natural Fibers
Dry your diapers in the dryer for starters but you can also consider using a plant based softener (do not use on synthetic fibers like fleece,suedecloth and microfiber).
You crave scented laundry?
Okay this may sound silly but for some people scented= clean. Scented laundry detergents are fine for cloth diapers. While you should never use a synthetic softener or dryer sheet on cloth diapers you can actually use the scented laundry crystals or pellets like Downy Unstoppables, Gain Fireworks, or Purex Crystals. Using a scented natural ingredient based fabric softener is also a great way to scent your laundry.
Diapers staining easily?
Consider adding a booster like Biz or Bac-Out to your pre-rinse.  Both contain a enzyme mix that can help get off a lot of junk (poop and pee) before the main wash.  I add 2 tbs Biz to my prewash and have noticed less staining than with just powdered Tide (I tried Oxiclean as well but feel Biz works better). Also consider running a warm quick wash instead of a basic pre-rinse I have had great results doing this. Or you can also sun dry your diapers (especially great for EBF poop stains.
Got a stubborn stain?
Use a Bunch Farmers Stain Stick directly on a stubborn stain.
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Yeast rash/Used Diapers? 
BLEACH!. Please do not rely on regular washing to get your diapers sanitized. Make sure that you use sanitizing bleach.  See my bleach section for specific bleach instructions. Bleaching 101 It is also a good idea to do a mineral strip before bleaching used diapers.
Diapers Not Absorbing like they should?/Diapers have ammonia or smell like a barn?
Try a mineral strip! To do this we recommend using the Grovia brand Mighty Bubbles or RLR. Both can be purchased here. Directions for mineral stripping can be found in this post  and bleaching directions can be found here

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