I have been cloth diapering for almost 1 year and I am lucky that I have gone nearly 10 months without having to do any crazy treatments to my diapers. For the most part, I have kept the stink to a minimum with a good wash routine and a light stripping every couple of months. But I knew the time would come…you know…where the ammonia begins to overtake the cuteness in your diapers??
The diapers smelt good and fresh out of the wash and even looked cleaner after sunning, but when a drop of urine hit the diaper….it was like a wall of Ammonia blew me over. Oh, wait did I mention that I waited too long to wash some of my diapers too? BIG MISTAKE! The smell of mold started to creep in too! You see I had been avoiding this (bleach)…and hoping that I was the only one who noticed…that was until the hubby says “Pampers don’t smell this bad.” That was it!! I knew it had to be done! Bring out the heavy-duty guns!!!
So I ventured out into the world of bleach. I researched my specific diaper’s manufacturer’s instructions and recommendations carefully and decided that bleach was necessary. So here is exactly what I did:
- Started with clean diapers (I only bleached the inserts)
- Hot rinse (to prepare the diapers for the bleach)
- Hot, Long, Wash with 1 Tablespoon of Original Blue Dawn and 1/4 cup of Original Clorox Bleach
- 2-3 Hot Rinses to ensure the Dawn and Bleach are out of the diapers
Reasons to Bleach Your Diapers:
- You are having trouble getting the stink out (ammonia).
- There is some type of infection that needs to be killed (yeast *but not the spores*, impetigo).
- When you have tried other methods to get your diapers clean and stink-free with little success.
- You have let your diapers sit too long in a contained bin where yucky bacteria can grow.
Things to Remember:
- Bleach can be harsh on diapers if used too often or in too high of a quantity.
- Check the specific manufacturer’s wash and care instructions before using bleach. It could void any warranties.
- DO NOT put the bleach directly on your diapers. Pour the liquid bleach into the “liquid bleach” compartment in your washer.
- Be careful when handling bleach as it may stain your clothing or anything else it comes into contact with. No little helpers for this one!
It worked like a charm! My diapers smell clean and fresh even after they are peed on! I would not personally do this more than I have to, but 1 time in 10 months isn’t too bad! I am pleased with the result!
NOTE: Originally written in 1982, I have updated the article a bit with more current photographs, however the content is the same.