Welcome to Part 5! Over the past few days we have looked at the different components that make up the modern cloth diaper and have touched on ways to prolong the life of our diaper components- or at least have a realistic expectation of how long they should last.
Here are a few more things that can significantly affect the life span of your diapers:
– Many public water sources use chlorine to disinfect their water. Chlorine (ie bleach) can break down clothing faster. Commomanos acidovarons (remember the PUL eating bacteria?) is actually much more common in high chlorine water. (12)
– Hard water can break down fibers up to 40% faster than their soft water counterparts.
– If you have soft water, it may be harder to get your detergent rinsed out. Leftover soap can cause your diapers to break down faster as well. Detergent is an alkaline substance that should not sit in fabric for prolong periods of time. The higher PH of the detergent, the more damage you will see. This why we discourage the use of add-ons like Washing Soda and Bleach.
So in Summary- Here’s How to prolong the life of your diapers:
- Have a large stash, the more diapers you have the less washing they have to endure.
- No add ons! Adding things like vinegar, bleach and washing soda will alter the PH of your wash causing fabrics to break down faster.
- Use right amount of soap- too much soap can make it difficult to rinse out completely and can break down the fabric.
- Dry on no heat or air dry- avoid stretching diapers when warm
- Wash every 2-3 days
- Limit soaking
- Wash in warm and hot, avoid extreme temperature changes
In summary, be realistic about your diapers. Treat them well, and know that you are
doing the best you can for your baby and the planet. When they become worn out- head over to your local cloth diaper store and purchase another stash. It’s what keeps our industry going- and helps keep the industry alive and thriving.
Want to share what you learned? Check out the infographic!