Monday, July 28, 2014

Stay away from the spray: Alternatives to #clothdiaper Sprayers

Diaper sprayers (aff link) are used to remove solid waste from cloth diapers.  Poop from exclusively breast feed babies dissolves away in the wash, so it does not need to be removed before laundering your diapers.  Solid poop can usually be dumped into the toilet. Then there is the "in between" poop.  It's not quite plunk-able, but it needs to be disposed of in the toilet.  Diaper sprayers entered the market to help make the process of cleaning cloth diapers easier.

Yes, I own a diaper sprayer and I do like it; however, there are clearly downsides to diaper sprayers.  Products like Spray Pal (aff link) have entered the market because a diaper sprayer can cause a significant "hazard" to the user.  Beware of accidentally causing splashes of dirty water coming off the diaper. If I'm not careful with my diaper sprayer, I will find spray on the tile wall by our toilet: not good. Yet another thing I dislike about diaper sprayers is that they sometimes generate a fine mist during the cleaning process and it makes the bathroom smell.  All complaining aside, 90% of the time the diaper sprayer works well for me and I am raving about it to my readers.

Although diaper sprayers work well, they are expensive.  Most people are not excited about using old-school methods where you would take your diaper and swirling it in the toilet water (by hand). However, you can clean your diapers with products you have or can obtain for very low cost. 

Cleaning a cloth diaper via plunger method:
  • Put dirty diaper into the toilet*
  • Use your plunger and agitate the diaper in the water.  This will loosen the poop and cause it to come off into the water
  • Remove the diaper from the water **
  • Place diaper into a wet bag or diaper pail until laundry day 
*Remove pocket diaper inserts before this process.  You only need to rinse diaper components that have poop on them.
**See below for tools to use in this process

Although the plunger method is closely tied to traditional cleaning methods, we have some great tools to make the process easier.  To remove the diaper from the water, you can use an inexpensive (and dedicated) pair of tongs.  There is also a new product called Diaper Dawgs (aff link) that allows you to reach into the toilet, grab the diaper, and avoid touching toilet water.

Other methods:
Diaper Liners and Dump it
Another alternative, is to use disposable diaper liners (aff link) at each diaper change.  I'm not a fan of liners because sometimes poop still gets onto the sides of the cloth diaper and the diaper needs to be rinsed.  However, a diaper liner can keep the majority of the poop off of the diaper and make poop disposal very easy.  I try to avoid disposable products when I'm cloth diapering, but liners have been a significant part of many cloth diaper users' success stories.

Remember, even disposable diapers instruct you to dump the poop: this is not exclusive to cloth diapers.

This post contains Kelly's Closet affiliate links.  We may receive a small percentage if you make a purchase through our links.  Thank you for your support!


  1. I use an inexpensive rubber spatula to scrape poop off the diaper into the toilet. After using, I then clean the spatula with a Clorox wipe.

  2. I use flushable liners and swear by them. The thought of a diaper sprayer splattering tiny droplets of poop water everywhere has always grossed me out. Eww!