Thanks to Debbie Miller for this Frugal Baby Tip!
I began using cloth diapers when my daughter was 5-months-old. Since I live in an apartment and must pay $1.25 to wash and $1.25 to dry each load, discovering how to cheaply launder diapers took some creativity. So after some trial and error, I came up with a way to launder diapers that leaves my diapers stain free and smelling great. I thought there might be other parents interested in this information.
First, I wash my diapers on every 4th day. I rinse messy diapers in the toilet and store them in a plastic container under the sink. For wet diapers, I use a tall trash can (with a lid) lined with an old pillowcase. The night before I am going to wash my diapers, I soak the messy diapers overnight in cold water with a small amount of detergent and baking soda.
The next day I dump all of this out into my bathtub and rinse each diaper and liner in cold water (I return the diapers/liners to the plastic container for easy transport to the laundry room). Then, I set the washing machine on " hot" using a small amount of cheap laundering detergent with bleach alternative and add baking soda. I load the messy diapers first, then the wet diapers (I simply carry the pillow case to the laundry room). After everything is in the wash, I fill a Downy Ball with about 1/4 cup of vinegar and toss it into the wash. When the diapers/liners are done, I hang them to dry on drying racks inside my apartment.
As for covers, I hand wash those in my bathtub and hang to dry. Although this method takes a little more effort and requires a lot of hand washing, it is economical. Hope this is helpful.