Storing Dirty Diapers

There are 2 Steps to storing diapers.
  1. Dump Solids in the toilet.
  2. Toss in your diaper pail.

People store diapers in either a wet bag (waterproof bag) or a pail liner (water proof, washable trash can liner). There are 3 ways to store cloth diapers: a wet pail, a dry pail, and a combination wet/dry pail. Our recommendation is a dry pail. We only spray poop diapers and just toss in the pee ones as we would in a dry pail. We don't recommend wet pails due to the mess and potential risks to young children.

 

Wet Pail A wet pail is a pail filled with water. Sometimes the pail also has baking soda in it. This method soaks the diapers until it is time to wash them. Any large plastic container with a lid can be a wet pail. How to use a wet pail:

  1. Fill pail 1/2 -3/4 full of cold water
  2. Add baking soda, or essential oil if desired to manage odor
  3. Shake, dunk and swish or use a sprayer as needed to remove messes
  4. Separate and unroll diapers and secure velcro
  5. Toss diaper in pail
  6. On laundry day dump entire pail in washer
  7. Run spin cycle to remove water
  8. Launder as usual
Pros
  • Wet pails minimize odors and stains because wet pail acts as a presoak.
  • Don’t have to launder as often
  • Minimizes stains because wet pail acts as a presoak
Cons
  • Can be dangerous. Babies and young children have drown in wet pails.
  • Diapers are sitting in a gross urine, poop mixture (pre rinsing or spraying can help minimize some of this)
  • Heavy and messy to lug around to fill, dump and get diapers from the pail into the washing machine.
  • Can lead to smelly diapers resulting from diapers sitting in poop water for a couple days
  • Hard on diapers puts excess wear on elastics and PUL.  
Dry Pail A dry pail is simply a pail where the diapers are tossed directly into it with no rinsing or soaking. A trash can with a flip-up lid works well. It is important to make sure that the lid closes well, even with a pail liner in it to help contain smells. How to use a dry pail:
  1. Line pail with washable liner
  2. Shake off any solids into toilet
  3. Separate and unroll diapers and secure any velcro
  4. Toss in dry pail
  5. Cold rinse
  6. Launder as usual
Pros
  • Simple! Just toss diapers in.
  • Safe no risk of drowning hazard. 
  • Easy to move diapers from pail to the wash
  • No wet bucket of pee and poop to move around and deal with.
Cons
  • Diapers may stain more (sun bleaching or rinsing can help deal with this)
  • May smell more than a wet pail (shaking solids into toilet prior to storing helps, also using a washable pail liner

Combination Pail A combination wet/dry pail is a dry pail where you rinse or spray off your dirty diapers prior to tossing them into the pail. A trash can with a flip-up lid works well. It is important to make sure that the lid closes well, even with a pail liner in it to help contain smells. How to use a combination pail:

  1. Remove as much mess from diaper as possible by spraying or dunking diapers
  2. Separate and unroll diapers and secure any velcro
  3. On laundry day empty pail into washing machine
  4. If diapers are exceptionally wet you can run a spin cycle to remove excess water
  5. Run a rinse cycle
  6. Launder as usual
Pros
  • Safe
Easy to move diapers from pail to the wash
  • No wet bucket of pee and poop to move around and deal with.
  • Minimizes stains 
Reduces odor because diapers are cleaner prior to entering pail
Cons
  • A bit heavier then a dry pail because the diapers are soaked or sprayed
  • Diaper pail is humid and if you don’t wash diapers soon enough you can develop a mildew problem
Trips and Tricks:
  1. Ammonia smells or build up. Consider rinsing your pee diapers before tossing them in your pail.
  2. Stains: Rinse poop off the diapers prior to tossing in pail. Using an natural enzyme cleaning such as BacOut to treat diapers prior to tossing pail can help minimize stains.
  3. Wash frequently to avoid excess staining and possible stink.