Thursday, May 19, 2016

Flats Challenge Wash Routine

Hi, this is Bethany, and today I am bringing you probably the most sought-after post of the challenge. We will be conquering the wash routine! I have seriously been handwashing every day this week and while it is different, it hasn't been too bad! This is just how I personally did it. So without further adieu...

Like I mentioned on Day 2 when I discussed what I bought for the challenge, I am using a camp washer, or bucket and plunger, to do my handwashing. I started by having my husband drill a hole in the lid so I could fit the plunger handle through. He is such a good sport with all of my crazy projects!

I recommend doing 1 day of diapers at a time if you are using a 5 gallon bucket. Any more and they will not fit or agitate well. This may mean you wash every day or do 2 loads ever other day. I have one 8 month old baby in diapers, so plan according to your child(ren).

Remember that all poop should be plopped in the toilet prior to washing. My baby eats solids, so we dump poop off of the fleece liner and then if necessary, I dunk the liner into the toilet to get all poop off and then wash my hands. It's just will not die. I have never handwashed EBF (exclusively breastfed) poop diapers, however, I imagine it would be easier to wash EBF if it had been rinsed prior. 

Step One: Cold Rinse (no detergent)
Fill bucket 3/4 full with cold water, place lid on the bucket, and plunge 50 times. Wait 5 minutes. Plunge 50 more times. Dump water. This water will be really discolored, like urine, and will really let you know you are getting tons of gross-ness out before your detergent gets to work!

Step Two: First Hot Wash (with detergent)
In the empty bucket (I dumped the diapers into the bathtub) I added 2 TBSP of Foca detergent and 1 TBSP of Borax (for softening my hard water). Add about an inch of water and swish around until the powders dissolve. Then add diapers and fill to 3/4 full. Replace lid. 

I have read many statements that 1 TBSP of detergent is enough, but I used 2 and did not have excessive suds or need excessive rinsing, so I was fine using 2. You can play around with this as long as your diapers are getting clean. 

Plunge 50 times. Wait at least 10 minutes. Plunge 50 more times. Dump water. 

Soaking really is amazing! You can walk away after those first 50 plunges and let it soak while you make dinner, tend to kids, or whatever. Just make sure the water is kept securely away from children who don't need to stick their hands in the water or worse, fall in. 

Step Three: Second Hot Wash (with detergent)
Basically repeat step two! Add detergent, swish to dissolve, add diapers, fill to 3/4. Plunge 50 times. Wait 10 minutes. Plunge 50 more times. Dump water.

Step Four: Cold Rinse (no detergent)
I have always briefly rinsed by hand just to get a little extra detergent out and then filled the bucket to 3/4. Plunge 50 times. Wait 5 minutes. Plunge 50 times.

At this point check the diapers to see if they are slimy or sudsy. If they are, you may want to rinse by hand under the faucet. If not, just begin wringing them out. You can either dump the water out before or after you wring the diapers.

To wring, squeeze out all the water by balling up the diaper first. Then, wring by twisting small segments of the diaper at a time. As much water as you can wring out manually will speed up the drying process. Remember, no electric dryer!

Step Five: Hang Dry
You can use either a clothes line, drying rack (like I have here), towel rods in the bathroom, hangers over the towel rod, or any method you like to get things dry! As you can see, I barely had room for the days diapers on my rack. I also have a microfiber insert on the front there. I did not cheat and use it on the challenge! It was from the evening before the challenge but I did not have time to wash it before Monday so I stuck to the rules and hand washed it as well. It took forever to dry, so I'm glad I wasn't using that type of insert for the challenge.

I finished my routine right about 9 PM and left the diapers to dry inside. The next morning when I checked them, the FSTs and fleece liners were dry, but the wipes were still damp. The cover was damp as well. It rained that day so I left them inside for the entire day.

On Wednesday of the challenge, I washed in the morning instead of evening and got to dry them outside for the afternoon. The FSTs and fleece dried within a few hours but the wipes were still damp for a while. I accidentally left the wipes and cover outside all night (oops!) and the next morning they were still damp, possibly from dew.

See, not too difficult! I talked a lot with every step, so it may seem lengthy at first glance, but it really doesn't take more than 1.5 hours if you do every step back to back without waiting too long during the soaks.

To check out others' wash routines, head over to today's Day Four Link Up at Dirty Diaper Laundry.
And as usual, to review the rules of the challenge, check out the sign up.

Does this sound like something you would do? Why or why not?

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