Saturday, December 29, 2007

Storage Systems

Now that you’ve decided which diapering system(s) you’re going to use, you will need to make a few other decisions.

Storage Systems

There are two main ways to store your soiled diapers until laundry day: in a wet pail, or in a dry pail. The wet pail is the more traditional system that most of our parents used. However, because of the drowning hazard of having a bucket of diaper water sitting around (not to mention the grossness factor!), this method is becoming increasingly less popular. To use a wet pail, fill with water (and maybe some essential oils with antibacterial properties such as Tea Tree Oil) and add your diapers to soak in the pail until it is time to launder them. Then dump the whole thing into the wash. If you do use wet pail method, please make sure you have a securely-locking lid on your pail to keep baby safe. Most people now use the dry pail method (which is simpler, in my opinion). A dry pail is just that, a diaper pail that is not filled with water into which you put soiled diapers to store until laundry day. Just about anything can be used as a diaper pail; we use a regular old 13-gallon trash can with a hinged lid. With dry pail method, you place dirty diapers directly into the pail, with no prewashing or presoaking. With soiled diapers you will want to dump any solid waste into the toilet first (this is not necessary with exclusively breastfed babies). Some people like to use flushable diaper liners or a special diaper sprayer for this purpose (and some people do dunk and swirl in the toilet…), but many people do neither and do just fine. Most people who use the dry pail method also use a pail liner in their diaper pail. You can use a special waterproof pail liner made of PUL or you can use a normal non-waterproof cotton laundry bag. When it is time to wash diapers, simply dump everything, liner included, into the washing machine and wash them all together.

There are many options for keeping smells in your pail at bay. You can add a few drops of essential oil or you can periodically add a few shakes of baking soda to your pail. You can also get special air fresheners made for diaper pails (Citrus Disks, or Deo Disks). You will also want to keep your pail out of direct sunlight and away from other heat sources (which would make smells stronger). Some people like to keep the pail open for proper ventilation but I prefer to keep the lid closed to keep smells contained in the pail. Finally, washing frequently will help keep smells to a minimum.

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