How to wash diapers? I am clueless!

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MommyQCT's picture
Joined: 06/12/08
Posts: 387
How to wash diapers? I am clueless!

Ok - so after much research i decided to try cloth diapering - part time at least until DH is on board...I had my baby last week and we used a few dipes in the past few days - time to do my first wash - I have read instructions on how to do so all over the place but i am SOOOO CLUELESS and just don't understand how to do it!!!! I need someone to explain it to me in idot terms please!!!!

I have ROCK IN GREEN detergent... the instructions say:
Do a "rinse/wash" cycle prior to the wash cylce. Then add detergent to do a wash cycle - use 2-3 tbsp per load, Double rinse...
WHAT THE HECK does this mean?

My washer does not have a "rinse /wash" option - so I was just guessing this meant just run my washer using cold water for rinse & wash.... THEN when the load has finished add the detergent and do it again (I don't have an option ot just rinse or was - each load does both a rinse / wash) - do I then use HOt/ COLd or Cold / cold - then I am able to set it up to do an extra finse so I gues that is what it means by an Double rinse?

I then looked for instructions on this board and i found this:

Start with a basic routine, and only change it if you need to. This is a pretty simple wash routine, and works well for most people:
- Cold rinse (especially important if your child is still young enough that you are not rinsing diapers, the cold rinse will help with stains).
- Hot wash with 1/2 the recommended amount of detergent.
- Double cold rinse

How do I just DO A COLD RINSE without running the whole wash cycle? Do you stand by the machine and wait for the rinse to finish then interupt / stop the wash before it goes to the next part? I am just SOOOO lost...

is there anyone that could explain this to me??? Please

Thanks in advance!

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Well, with older washes that don't just have a separate "rinse" option I force the machine to the timed point where the rinse starts up on the dial. Most will go straight to a rinse and don't even realize it didn't do the wash part in front of it if that makes sense. I just turn the dial past the wash point to where it would normally do an automatic rinse.
I agree, start with cold rinse (the vast majority of washers, especially cheap top loaders without fancy options, do cold rinses only). When that's done I manually turn the machine to a full wash with hot water and add the detergent. It'll automatically do a normal rinse afterwards as part of the cycle. And then like in the beginning I force the washer to a rinse cycle again.

CONGRATS BTW!!! :mrgreen:

TiggersMommy's picture
Joined: 02/14/10
Posts: 6043

Congratulations!! And WTTW Joseph!

Yep, ditto what Jackie said. That's what will work if you have an older washer without fancy settings. I felt the EXACT same confusion when I first started.

A few more words of advice:
1) To start, use the lower end of the recommended amount when using Rockin' Green. It'll do the job, save you money, and reduce buildup of detergent. You'll know if you need to use more detergent if they're not coming clean.
2) Wash on a larger load setting then you'd normally think is necessary. It'll help to rinse them really clean.
3) I like to line dry my covers and pockets. It reduces wear and tear, especially with velcro closures. When I say line dry it doesn't have to be an actual laundry line. I've been known to throw them over the backs of the dining room chair or hang them on hangers in DD's closet.

jaimelr's picture
Joined: 01/09/10
Posts: 217

Congrats and good luck. It truly just takes some trial and error. We have a newer front load machine so it has a separate setting for "heavy load" and "extra rinse" and "pre-rinse" as well as temperature selection options BUT because it is energy efficient it hardly uses any water so I actually have to add an extra bucket of water to each load for both pre-rinse and wash cycle via the soap dispenser!! It truly just takes trial and error.
And I also only wash the CD's and bum wipes in one load (actually with DS's clothes). I never put towels or other linens etc - because these other laundry items just soak up too much of the water and then EVERYTHING comes out smelling awful!

MommyQCT's picture
Joined: 06/12/08
Posts: 387

Thanks forthe advice ladies - I think i get it now....
I did 2 washes of the whole stash (not many yet) and both times they came out clean and smelling nice...

alwayssmile's picture
Joined: 08/26/07
Posts: 14483

Woo hoo! Smile