For many parents, cloth diapers are an economical option providing many benefits for their children and the environment. However, these parents may find that cloth diapers come with one major drawback…the smell! For some, no matter how often diapers are cleaned, that smell is just impossible to get rid of. Well, never fear. Here are some tips for getting the smell out of cloth diapers.
Change Diapers Regularly
Changing soiled diapers immediately will work to reduce odors. While fresh urine does not have a strong odor, the smell will become more noticeable as the salts in urine break down into a pungent ammonia. In addition to changing your baby every 2-3 times during the day, the one-night time change is recommended.
Scrape or rinse solid waste from diapers. Some spray urine off into the toilet while others put wet diapers in a pail and rinse in the washing machine later on.
Tips for Washing
Start with a cold water rinse. While you shouldn’t need any detergent for this cycle, vinegar can come in handy in neutralizing the odors.
Follow up by washing in hot water. Although it may be tempting to add a lot of detergent, to counter odors, the detergent residue can often cause diaper odors while increasing the risk of rashes and leaks. Therefore, it is best to start off with half the amount of detergent recommended for regular loads and adjust as needed.
For lingering odors, add a small amount of diluted bleach during the hot water cycle and rinse thoroughly.
Dry Diapers in the Sun
Due to sun’s disinfecting powers, line drying can help to get rid of the diaper’s ammonia smell. Adding 4-5 drops of lemon essential oil to the dryer will also help if you prefer to machine dry.
Open the Diaper Pail
While you may think opening the diaper pail will just make odors more noticeable inside the home, leaving the lid cracked will increase circulation and reduce smells. You should also wipe out the pail with a nontoxic disinfectant regularly. Drying the pail out in the sunlight will also help to eliminate odors.
Place a Room Deodorizer Near the Pail
There are plenty of nontoxic home deodorizers on the market that can come in handy for neutralizing diaper odors in the home. Parents can also use a vented fridge box of baking soda or coffee grounds.
Cloth diapers may be the best option for you and your family and odor should not stand in the way of your decision. These tips can help keep smells under control making cloth diapers that much more convenient. Good luck raising your baby in a fun and safe environment that smells great!