Thursday, May 23, 2013

Flats Challenge- Washing Routine

 I'm participating in the  flats and handwashing challenge at Dirty Diaper Laundry.

By the time I went to bed Tuesday night, I was ready to quit the challenge. I'm not a quitter though, so I re- evaluated what I'd been doing, and read other blog posts about what everyone else was doing. I came to the conclusion that (as usual) I'd been overdoing things. I have pared down my washing routine so it is only taking 20 - 30 minutes twice a day instead of the hour it took me to do one load at first. We have hard water here. When we first moved in I had a front load washing machine. I have fought getting my diapers clean constantly! We finally bought a top load washing machine and that has helped, but I usually still use two wash cycles and a soak. I guess I was having a hard time believing I could really get the diapers clean by hand. I think the diapers are actually coming out cleaner though.
I have been keeping the diapers in a pail of water until I wash. The bucket I'm using has a gamma seal lid, so it is easy for me to open and put diapers in, but hard for the kids to get into. When I put a new diaper in the pail, I open it up and then use the plunger to make sure the diaper is under water. At wash time, I dump out the soak water and fill the pail with hot water and maybe a tablespoon of liquid soap (I'm not sure of the brand, it's sold bulk at our local co-op and I had a container of it hiding in the back of my laundry cabinet).
Then I use my diaper sprayer to rinse out the diaper a bit before putting them in the wash water. I agitate everything the bucket for a few minutes, maybe 3 or 4 and let the diapers sit for a while( whenever I get back to them). When I get back, I plunge them for a few more minutes and dump out the wash water. Then I fill the bucket with warm water and agitate again to get out most of the suds.  I dump out that water and do another rinse in cold water (sometimes I rinse them by spraying with the diaper sprayer, the kids like to help with that).
Finally, I put on gloves and twist the heck out of the diapers to get out as much water as possible. Then I hang them on my drying rack since it's been to rainy to hang them outside most of the week.

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