Quick Question for Cloth Diaperers

NEVER MIND.  The sun worked.  That was miraculous.  I guess 110° heat is good for something.  Did I ever mention that clotheslines are against our neighborhood’s CC&Rs?  So are solar panels.  Now that green is so trendy, though, I wonder if those bylaws will get re-written.  Hm…

Hi, Ladies ~

My baby’s waking up, so my more thorough post on what I’ve learned in my vast experience of 3+ weeks of cloth diapering will have to wait.

One question, though, that can’t wait:  How do you get stains out of diaper covers?  I mean the PUL itself.  I typically wash at least every other day, almost always rinse out messy diapers, do a cold water soak in borax for a good long time, then wash in hot with my homemade laundry detergent (made from washing soda, borax, and castille soap).  However, our covers are garnering more and more stains — brown, green, even pinkish!  Ugh.  They’re out there in the sun right now;  I hope it bleaches them without destroying the PUL;  plastics typically don’t do well in the sun.

I’ve done some searching, and there are LOTS of opinions about how to wash diapers, but I can’t find anything — at least not right now — about this particular issue, which surely, isn’t unique to us.

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About Karen Joy

I'm a partially-homeschooling mother of six -- 3 boys ages 19, 17 and 15 years old, and three girls: 11, 8, and 3. I like birding, reading, writing, organic gardening, singing, playing guitar, hiking, the outdoors, and books. I very casually lead a very large group of homeschooling families in the Phoenix area. I have a dear hubby who designs homes for a local home builder and who is the worship pastor of our church. I live in the desert, which I used to hate, but now appreciate.

Posted on July 17, 2009, in Babies, Cloth Diapering, Housework. Bookmark the permalink. 5 Comments.

  1. I’ve read of people using oxy clean, hydrogen peroxide, or bac-out as bleach alternatives.

    • Oxy Clean and borax work the same way — when combined with water, there is a chemical reaction that turns some of the water to H2O2 — hydrogen peroxide. However, regular ol’ hydrogen peroxide is probably stronger on its own.

  2. ok my only thoughts:

    many people complain that though homemade laundry soap is awesome in general – it doesn’t do well on modern diapers b/c it doesn’t efficiently clean out the poo and pee from the dipes.

    another thought is oxyclean every now and again

    sun-bleaching works great on bio stains that wont budge in the laundry

    are you rinsing out the REALLY messy diapers before letting them sit in the pail for too long?

    also if you have very hard or very soft water it can be very hard to get out stains from build up of either minerals or soap.

    some staining is to be expected in diapers. I don’t worry much about it… unless it’s really bad. some fo my inserts are just beyond fixing – but you know, it is for catching poo, so I figure that’s ok.

    • Actually, I’m terribly picky about laundry, and was concerned about my homemade detergent working on the diapers. But, the only kind of poop that the detergent doesn’t work so well is on GREEN poop — which, by the way, means that the food did not digest fully, which is very often indicative of an intolerance. I’m going to lay out my few green-tinged diapers in the sun, since the sunlight worked so well on the diaper covers (see the “never mind” note at the top of the post).

      We do have soft water. (Via a water softener, because our water is WAY WAY hard out here.)

      If your diaper inserts are “beyond fixing” give ’em to Erin (above). 😀 She worked crazy-insane with about ten steps to get her second-hand pocket diapers into like-new condition. I would have lost patience by about step three or four.

  3. Straight hydrogen peroxide works wonders! Just the topical solution we all have at home.

    Glad to hear the sun helped! We hang our clothes lines below fence level so no one complains. There are really cool solar roof tiled now that look just like a roof… I suppose it wad to please cc&r’s.

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