How To Wash Cloth Diapers: 5 Time-Saving Tips

How To Wash Cloth Diapers: 5 Time-Saving Tips

If you're a mom who cloth diapers her baby, you know the importance of the washing process and how doing it the proper way is imperative to the lifespan of the diapers and the health of your baby--but it can be time consuming! Let's go over a few ways to wash the diapers thoroughly but efficiently:

Before You even Start Cleaning...!

Before we get into the most efficient way to clean cloth diapers, there' ahead of ahead of times a step you can take to ultimately make the process easier: disposable diaper liners.

What Are Diaper Liners?

These handy inserts are layers of material that you place inside your cloth diaper--urine is able to pass through them, but they capture the solid waste. They help protect the diaper from getting overly stained and they also help protect being clogged by diaper creams. They do not absorb like diaper insets do, but they act as a shield to the solid waste and greasy creams.

How Do I Use Cloth Diaper Liners?

Disposable diaper liners usually come in a roll and are made from natural products like bamboo or corn. They are designed to flush away, so if you have a dirty diaper, simply remove the soiled liner and flush it. This should extent the life of your cloth diapers and make the cleaning process much easier.

Tip #1

Spray the Diapers

bidet sprayer

      Click the image to buy the Purrfectzone diaper sprayer

By far, the best way to keep on top of the diaper cleaning process is to give every diaper a quick pre-wash. The easiest way to do this is to have a diaper sprayer (which may also be called a bidet sprayer) attached to your toilet. These devices are inexpensive and easy to install and will keep your diaper so much cleaner and reduce the diaper smell in your home.

The sprayer that attaches to your toilet is high-pressure, so simply hold the soiled diaper over the toilet, and give it a wash down. Any waste can then be flushed away.

If you can make a habit of doing this as soon as possible after every diaper change, it will save you a lot of time and energy in the long run.

Tip #2

Develop a Washing Routine

washing routine

This may seem like a no brainer, but it's very important to have a routine to follow that you stick to.

First of all, do your homework ahead of time and know what kind of water you have--hard or sift (most people have hard) and what kind of detergent works best with your water type. Also determine the right amount of detergent works best--you don't want to use too much or too little.

Figure out how often you want to wash the diapers. Waiting a whole week will cause the smell and bacteria build-up harder to to deal with, so maybe you want to wash them every 2-3 days.

Tip #3


Before to dive in to the main wash cycle, it is beneficial to do a shorter pre-wash first. This might depend on your washing machine, but pick the shortest cycle available and, using HALF of the recommended detergent, do this wash in COLD water. Using hot water at this point might set in stains. Run this cycle all the way through.

Tip #4

The Main Wash

This is going to be the cycle that really gets the diapers clean, so use HOT water and set you machine for serious agitation (it might be called "super was" or something similar). Use the predetermined full amount of detergent this time and run the full cycle.

Quick Rinse Tip

It has been recommended that adding some common vinegar to your diaper rinse cycle has some long-term benefits. Adding 1/2-1 cup of white vinegar can help neutralize and remove any remaining detergent and neutralize any remaining ammonia smell. It also helps with hard water build-up. Experiment with this and, if it works for you, might be an easy thing to do that saves you time in the long run from hassling with stains and odor.

Tip #5

Drying Time


While hanging cloth diapers out to dry in the sun is often recommended, this can be a time consuming process. There's nothing wrong with using the dryer though the diapers can take a long time to dry. Consider adding some wool dryer balls which can considerably cut down on dryer time. You might want to also try running and extra spin cycle while still in the washer to get as much water out as possible.


Thank you for reading our tips on how to save time while washing cloth diapers. We hope that you found this information helpful and are able to implement at least a few of these tips into your own wash routine. Washing cloth diapers doesn’t have to be a daunting task, and with a little organization and planning you can easily make it part of your weekly routine. Do you have any additional tips or tricks that have worked well for you? Please share them in the comments below – we would love to hear from you!


Q1. Is it sanitary to wash cloth diapers in washer?

It's absolutely safe to wash cloth diapers in your washing machine, but you shouldn't mix them with any other clothing items. It's also highly important you wash off soiled diapers before adding them to the machine. It's best if you give them a quick rinse immediately after they are soiled.

Q2. How do you wash cloth diapers?

How To Wash Cloth Diapers

  • Prep Cloth Diapers Before Use.
  • Dispose of Waste and Cold Rinse.
  • Run a Hot Wash Cycle with Detergent.
  • Rinse with Warm or Cold Water.
  • Dry Cloth Diaper on Low Tumble or on a Drying Line.

Q3. Do you have to wash cloth diapers after every use?

No matter what type of cloth diaper you use, they'll need washing so you can use them over and over again. (In fact, new cloth diapers should be washed at least once before using, to increase their absorbency.)

Q4. Do you wash cloth diapers in hot or cold water?

hot or cold

Nappies are heavily soiled laundry, hot water is the most effective way to remove soiling. All laundry detergents can be used in cold (30°C), warm (40°C) or hot (60°C) water, however, a hot wash will outperform every time. While cold washing saves money on energy costs, the down side is eventually smells will occur.

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