Frontloader vs Fluff: my constant battle

     I feel like I'm having the same fight with my washing machine every time I do diaper laundry...there's just not enough water!  Hey, I like being environmentally friendly as much as the next girl but my 'high efficiency' frontloader is killing me!  Everyone knows the only way to get a really clean diaper is to get as much water through them as possible.  When I started CDing, we had a tiny apartment sized washer and dryer.  I wanted a top loader so incredibly badly because I knew how amazingly more easy it was to get a fabulously clean diaper out of one.  Unfortunately, my space only allowed me to have a stacked frontloading laundry pair so when it came time to shop for them, I drooled at the 'old fashioned' top loaders as I passed them on the way to the fancy new frontloaders (which my hubby drooled over).  We settled on a humongous LG pair that was as best for cloth diapers as I could get. It has an prewash, sanitize, extra rinse, delicate cycle; everything I could need.  Best of all, it has an option to add more water!  I read every page of that manual beforehand and nothing told me just how  much water was 'more' water, but it was better than nothing.  Now, having used the machine, I'd say it gives me only a little more water; enough that I can see about an inch more water in the tub than when I don't choose that option.  I guess a little is still better than nothing so I'll take what I can get!  I do other things as well to 'trick' my machine into filling with more water.

Here's what I do to get the most water through my HE frontloading washer:

  • choose the "water plus" option on the washer
  • run a cold water cycle for about 5 mins or until I know the diapers are soaking wet.  Then, I turn off the washer and restart the cycle.  This way, the diapers are super heavy and the machine thinks it has a large load and adds more water.  (Alternatively, some people add a few sopping wet towels to the load at the beginning to trick the machine in the same way.  I find my way easier and less messy!)
  • Take a bucket and pour water into the soap dispenser.  The water pours directly into the washer this way.  (My machine allows about 2 medium buckets of water this way, after that I get an error message and the machine drains all the water and stops the cycle).  This way gets me the most water but is the most work and messiest.

     We don't get stink too often, and now that we're using Thirsties Pre-wash I'm barely noticing stink at all anymore (maybe once every 6 weeks or so..and even then it's mild).  When we do get stink, I'm pretty sure it's because my hubby has forgotten to fill the water softener with salt and I've been washing in extremely hard water for a week.  One run of my inserts through the sanitize cycle takes care of it though :)  I still dream of top-loaders some days though...

     Anyone have another trick for more H2O??


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