One of the most common questions I’m asked in our boutiques Introduction to Cloth Diapering class is ‘what do you do with the poop?’ It seems like almost every parent hesitates to ask, but is concerned about solids in their cloth diapers and how to handle them.
There are a few ways to handle solids in your cloth diapers (don’t worry! We’ll talk about all of them.) but the most common way is to use a diaper sprayer. So, what is a diaper sprayer?
In this article, we’ll discuss the ins and outs of diaper sprayers, how they can help you remove solids from your Thirsties cloth diapers and which type of diapers you can clean with your sprayer.
When to Use a Diaper Sprayer
Most people are actually shocked to find out that exclusively breastfed babies, or babies that have EBF poop, don’t need to use diaper sprayers right away. Exclusively breastfed babies, meaning they have nothing more than breastmilk in their diet, produce water soluble solids that don’t need to be removed before entering your washer. How convenient is that? (Another benefit to breastfeeding!)
However, if your baby has any other substance in their diet, be it formula, baby food etc, their solids must be removed from your cloth diapers before entering your washer. So, this would be a great time to take out your diaper sprayer and get to work.
How to Remove Solids
Your diaper sprayer is going to attach to the back of your toilet so that solids can be sprayed off into your toilet. Some people prefer to use a spray shield such as the Spray Pal, but others just prefer to hold the diaper over the toilet.
Most diaper sprayers have an adjustable pressure valve that will change the pressure as you hold down the lever. I always recommend that parents experiment with the adjustable spray pressure without a dirty diaper in hand first to get used to the volume of water. It’s never fun to have more pressure than you need while holding a poopy diaper.
Once your diaper sprayer is installed and tested, hold your diaper over the toilet or secure it to your spray shield and spray the solids down into the toilet. Some people choose to wring out their diaper once it’s been rinsed and others choose to just throw it in their diaper pail or wet bag. Once all your poopy diapers have been rinsed, you’re ready for wash day.
However, using a diaper sprayer isn’t the only way to remove solids from your poopy diapers. Some parents prefer the ‘dunk and swish’ method to remove solids from their dirty cloth diapers. Simply dunk your dirty diaper in clean toilet water, flush your toilet and swish the solids off as your toilet water runs. Once all the solids have been rinsed off, you’re ready to put your diaper in your pail or wet bag or toss it in the wash.
The other alternative is a disposable liner. Disposable liners are about half the thickness of a dryer sheet and lay on the top most layer of your diaper. The solids will remain on top of your liner and the liquids will move through to your absorbency so that when you are ready for a change, you simply remove the disposable liner and put your diaper in your diaper pail.
#ThirstiesTip Although many brands of disposable liners say that they are flushable, we do not recommend flushing your liners. Pipes can get clogged, septic tanks can back up and if the liner does not completely break down, it can affect your sewage system as well. Please dispose of your used liners, but do not flush!
So, which method do I prefer? I was actually a fan of disposable liners when my babies were introduced to solids and moving away from breast milk. However, as they’ve grown, a diaper sprayer has come in handy so many times when I just needed a deeper clean to my overnight diapers and naptime diapers. The method you choose is up to you, but know that your favorite may change as your babies grow and having a diaper sprayer on hand can be good for so many situations.
Do you have any questions about removing solids from your cloth diapers? Share it with us in the comments! You can shop Thirsties cloth diapers at your local retailer or online with Thirsties. For other cloth diaper tips and tricks, you can visit Thirsties on Facebook or join the online community, Thirsties Groupies. And don’t forget to checkout the Thirsties Instagram feed, @thirstiesinc.