After tackling ammonia for the past two weeks, we are moving onto to nitpicking a great wash routine. Like we have previously said, if your routine is working for you, don’t even bother reading on, but if you have odors sneaking up when your child pees in a clean diaper, or out of the dryer, we can work on fixing it. Today we are going over the start of the wash routine, the pre-rinse. Your pre-rinse cycle is a 2-3 minute process that wets the diapers down, then spins them out to loosen solid or semi solid soils, as well as giving urine soaked diapers a good rinse through.
The best routine we have found for diapers is
- Warm or hot pre-rinse (see notes below)
- Hot wash with good amount of detergent (not the sanitary cycle, your regular hot cycle, your water heater should be set to 120 degrees F)
- 2 cold rinses. Your machine will do one automatically, add another if you can.
For years we actually advised doing a hot pre-rinse, the reason for hot being that many water heaters didn’t get up to 120 in the pre-rinse, so setting it to warm gave you room temperature water, setting it to hot gave you the higher temperature that is needed. In recent years with more sophisticated machines, we are adjusting our advice to say warm pre-rinse, not hot or cold.
Bummis recently had this article as well for some of the science behind the warm prerinse:
In our practical experience and lots of testing with our customers, we found the cold prerinse set in stains and make it much harder to wash the fresh feces and urine out of the diapers. Switch your prerinse, see if it helps. If your water heater doesn’t get very hot, consider doing a hot prerinse to boost those temps a little.
If you don’t have the option for a warm or hot pre-rinse, you can do a little trial and error to see if your water conditions make it better to skip the pre-rinse completely ( I would advise using a diaper sprayer to rinse the poopy diapers individually before going in the pail if that is the case), or using a cold pre-rinse. Depending on how “pre-cleaned” the diapers are from your sprayer, many customers found they could eliminate this step completely, however if you don’t have that option or are running into issues getting them cleaned, opt for the cold. I would say for HE machines, go with the cold over opting out of the prerinse, if your machine is water efficient using as many rinse cycles as you can will help in the water-efficient wash cycle.
Next week, onto the wash cycle
Any questions? Email us at Abbyslane@aol.com