Cloth diapering - logistics

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2007
Cloth diapering - logistics
12
Tue, 04-27-2010 - 9:44am

I'm planning to cloth diaper and after starting to get my mind wrapped around all of the different types of diapers (a feat in itself), I'm now wondering about the logistics of how it all works. These might seem silly to you BTDTs, but I'm clueless!

How many diapers do I need to start? What sizes?
Do I need one of those sprayers on the toilet?
How often do you do laundry?
Where do you store dirty diapers before laundry? Do you rinse or treat them before you throw them in the laundry bin?
Do you cloth diaper when you're out of the house? If so, how does that work (in other words, what do you do with the dirties)?

And please add any other tips and tricks you've learned along the way! Thanks!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-04-2007
Tue, 04-27-2010 - 11:38am

Ok, I started this once and then deleted it by accident. here we go again... Everyone does things differently, but this is what we do.

How many diapers do I need to start? What sizes?
How many diapers you need depends on how often you do laundry. A newborn goes through about 12 diapers a day. I think by 4 months or so we were down to 8, and by 8 months we were down to where we are now 5-6/day. For sizes you have a few options, you can get 1 size diapers which basically go from birth (more like 10 lbs though) to toddler, or you can get sized diapers. Since you don't know how big you're baby will be at birth or how fast they'll grow, if you want to do sized diapers you might want to only buy the first size, and then buy the next sizes as you need them. Forinstance, I do prefolds which are somewhat sized, so I used my newborn prefolds for the first 4ish months and then I switched into the “regular” size. One size are easier in some ways, but then each diaper gets quite a big more use.

Do I need one of those sprayers on the toilet?
I love my diaper sprayer, it's really nice if you're going to rinse off the newborn poop.

How often do you do laundry?
I do it once a week, which means I had about 70 newborn diapers.

Where do you store dirty diapers before laundry? Do you rinse or treat them before you throw them in the laundry bin?
I store dirty diapers in a large kitchen trash can with a pail liner in it. I rinse all poopy diapers. Once baby is on solids you have to rinse poopy diapers. When baby is just breastfed, it's up to you if you want to rinse them or not, it's not necessary.

Do you cloth diaper when you're out of the house? If so, how does that work (in other words, what do you do with the dirties)?
I do. You can buy a “wet bag” which is like a little wterproof bag that you can keep in your diaper bag. I find all in one or pocket diapers to be the most convenient while out and about, but I've used my prefolds as well. I made the mistake a few times of thinking disposables would be easier for going out, but all the blowouts I ever had were in disposables. And a blowout is so much harder to deal with then a dirty cloth diaper.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 07-15-2004
Tue, 04-27-2010 - 2:04pm

How many diapers do I need to start? What sizes?
We used disposables for the first two weeks of Simon's life. Partly because the ones we had were not small enough and the cloth caught on his umbilicus. We also used them for the first few days after he was circ'ed. I have all in one size diapers. I also have a few that change as they get larger. i used those when he was tiny like 4weeks till roughly 10 weeks. Now I just use the all size with the snaps that are suppose to go up to around 30-40lbs. We have roughly 28 diapers I think right now.



Do I need one of those sprayers on the toilet?
We have one and it is really nice. Other then having to do some rigging it was pretty easy to set up. We really miss it when we are on the road.



How often do you do laundry?
Every 4 to 5 days depending.



Where do you store dirty diapers before laundry? Do you rinse or treat them before you throw them in the laundry bin?
If they are poopy we rinse them out and then we have a heavy duty trash can with the step to open lid lined with a trash bag that sits next to the toilet.



Do you cloth diaper when you're out of the house? If so, how does that work (in other words, what do you do with the dirties)?
Yes, I have a wet bag that goes in the diaper bag and when we use a diaper and wipe ( also using cloth wipes) we just toss them in there until we get home. On longer trips we use the wet bag and then when we stop for the night or get to a destination we have his littler trash can that we use for the diapers till we wash them.


I have a larger diaper bag because the CD's are larger so to take more it requires more room. Simon has had some issues with rashes so we are using corn starch powder to help. I ordered some CD friendly creams but they have yet to show up.


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iVillage Member
Registered: 10-11-2005
Tue, 04-27-2010 - 2:35pm

Here are my answers, we cloth diaper two. Though we have been a bit lazy recently and used a combo of cloth and disposables.

How many diapers do I need to start? What sizes?

There are two ways to go, you can get newborn diapers, which are so cute and itty bitty, and last maybe 6 weeks. Or you can use sposies till baby hits 8 to 10 pounds and then switch to using cloth. Size also depends on what kind of diapers you will use, if you use prefolds you will want infants, if you used one sized, you want one sized (duh I know) but they will not fit a newborn most likely, if you used sized diapers you probably will want smalls to start. As to how many it depends on how often you want to wash diapers. I suggest 24 and then you can buy more as needed.

We went through about 20 diapers a day in the newborn/infant till about 3 month stage so we needed more then 24 to start, but a lot of people only go through 12ish so 24 gets you to washing every day and a half or so. Now we go through about 30 in 2 days for 2, so it slows down as they age.

Do I need one of those sprayers on the toilet? Not as a breastfed infant, you can just throw the dirties right in the laundry no need to rinse. When they start solids it can be nice, but I've gone 3 years without one, I just dip and swish if I really need to, which is gross, but works fine.

How often do you do laundry? We do laundry every other day. We put it on before bed on the second day and DH transfers it and starts it in the drier before he leaves for work, so it is done when I get up and downstairs in the morning.

Where do you store dirty diapers before laundry? Do you rinse or treat them before you throw them in the laundry bin? We store them in an metal lidded flip top trash can with a wet bag in it. We keep it in the kitchen because it is out of the way there, and the room is gated so the small ones won't play with it. We do not rinse them or pre-treat them except for rinsing off poop diapers that the poop doesn't just roll out of.

Do you cloth diaper when you're out of the house? If so, how does that work (in other words, what do you do with the dirties)? We do use cloth out of the house, though lately I've been using disposables. We have travel sized zipped wetbags that can hold between 3 and 7 dirty diapers and we just through the dirty diapers in there after they are changed when we are out.












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Registered: 02-26-2008
Tue, 04-27-2010 - 11:00pm

Sounds like you got a lot of great information - I haven't read through everything yet. and while I am not a BTDT mom about these, I will tell you what DH and I are going to do.

I was reading and reading and reading more about cloth diapers and a friend of mine uses G-Diapers. DH and I have had disagreements about if these are actually cloth, because they have either a cloth insert or a disposable insert.

But what we are going to do is use disposable for about 2 months - that way we know what sizes to order and can get them later. I am still registering for the small size, but plan on keeping the receipts just in case. I like the g-diapers because they have the disposable insert and we can just throw them and then reuse the outside part.

One thing to keep in mind, I don't remember if you are staying home after the little one, but we are running into the centers not doing cloth diapering. We think (after explaining what a G-diaper is) that they will do those, we are going to borrow one from our friend so I can show them to make sure. If they don't, then we will probably do disposable only, or only during the day..but not sure yet.

Good luck~









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Registered: 09-29-2006
Wed, 04-28-2010 - 12:06pm

I've been following this thread to get all the great advice from BTDT moms:).


We have decided to use a cloth diaper service for the first 10 weeks (where they loan you the diapers; wash them and drop them off at your doorstep once per week). We figured this would give us a good intro to cloth diapers without having to devote the time to wash them. Apparently, another benefit to this is that it gets you past the stage of needing really teeny diapers.


Beyond that, we haven't decided whether we'll use all-in-ones or different sized diapers, or which style. So, we'll have some decisions to make. But the cloth diaper service will also give us a couple weeks to try some of the different styles they sell, so this should help. (I've noticed that a lot of places that sell cloth diapers, at least around here, have a program like that, where you can try a bunch of different kinds of diapers over a short time for a rental fee.


I'd say the tentative plan is to buy enough diapers so that we'll wash them every third day. (Love the idea of mom putting them in the wash the night before...dad throws them in the drier the next morning before he leaves for work!) I'm also planning to buy a "wet bag" for putting dirty diapers in when we're away from the house. Other than that, we'll just see how it goes!


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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2007
Wed, 04-28-2010 - 1:54pm
Thanks girls! This was really helpful. Now I just need to get to buying!

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iVillage Member
Registered: 04-13-2008
Thu, 04-29-2010 - 11:22am

I am intrigued... what is a toilet spray thing?

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iVillage Member
Registered: 12-17-2007
Thu, 04-29-2010 - 11:27am
Ha! I'm sure it has an official name, but it's a little sprayer you can hook up to the back of the toilet to spray poo off a diaper into the toilet.

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Avatar for Cmmelissa
iVillage Member
Registered: 11-13-2008
Thu, 04-29-2010 - 3:05pm

Hi Erin!

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Registered: 07-15-2004
Thu, 04-29-2010 - 8:19pm
Anna, ours looks just like a sprayer on the kitchen sink. IT just hooks into the bottom of the tanks on the toliet and you just pull on the button on the back and it sprays. IT is sooo much nicer then dunk and scrub. We really miss ours when on the road! lol


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