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The summer is over and the chillier days are now upon us which can only mean one thing— cloth nappies are harder to dry!! This is when a lot of cloth parents begin to worry, when they may start to run out due to lack of space for drying and when cloth can become overwhelming. It is so different to using cloth in the summer so how can you dry cloth nappies in the winter?
Don’t Completely Ditch That Washing Line
Ok so it may be cooler but as long as it isn’t raining, you can still dry your nappies outside on a line. A good breezy day will obviously dry them that bit quicker but even if you only get them outside for a while and finish your drying inside, it will certainly help with the process.
Have Enough Airers
Having the adequate amount of airers to take both your nappies and clothes is obviously a very important factor but space can often be a problem. There are lots of varities of airers now available on the market so you should easily be able to find a selection to work perfectly in your home.
Get Them Up High
We all know that heat rises so your best bet for increasing drying time indoors is to get those nappies, inserts, boosters and wipes up high. Purchase an item like a socktopus that can be hung from a curtain rail or over a door. These are a great space saver and allow the air to get around all of the nappy or insert. Another amazing option I have seen is a Pulley Maid like this one here. This can go on any ceiling in the house, be lowered to pop your laundry onto and then lifted up and out of the way.
Use An Upstairs Bedroom
To get even higher, if you have a bedroom upstairs that you can use or spare room or office etc. take full advantage of this space. Pop clothes airers in there, use your socktopus or install a wall airer to reduce the amount of floor area you are taking up.
The use of a dehumidifier will help your nappies to dry as it removes the damp from the air and circulates clean air making your home a far better environment for drying in the winter months.
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We all know that heat plus PUL does not mix so when it comes to using heat sources in your home you need to be careful. If you have radiators, you can safely place wipes straight on to these but it can be a bit risky with a cloth nappy unless you keep the temperature nice and low. Instead, purchase a radiator airer that can hang over the top of your radiator and keep your cloth nappies at a safe distance.
Placing your airer in front of an electric, gas or open/log burner fire will help to speed up the drying process but just be sure to rotate it every now and then to prevent any nappies from overheating.
If you have an AGA, these give out a lovely consistent warmth and placing your nappies around one or even on the top for a short while (the inside being face down) will really help to dry them more quickly.
An airing cupboard is a great place to pop your nappies inside to get dry. Grab your socktopus and peg up your nappies and inserts, hanging it away from the water tank, preferably above it where the heat rises to.
When we went on our recent holiday to Cornwall, we stayed in a very old stone cottage and my nappies just weren’t drying. They had a heated airer which gave out a very low constant heat and it worked wonders. I made sure that I didn’t place the PUL directly onto the rungs and didn’t leave them on long enough to overheat and also didn’t go out leaving them on there. I’m not sure if this would eventually cause issues, but to improve drying times it may be worth the investment.
Tumble dryers aren’t ever really recommended as a drying choice for cloth nappies but sometimes, as we all know, needs must. If you really need to use one, use the lowest setting you can and only do a short cycle.
What Other Tips Are There?
My other tips would be to wash more regularly to ensure that you always have some nappies to hand. I would also perhaps invest in more inserts as these tend to be what take the longest to dry as well as using more pocket nappies (again if possible) as their shells dry very fast. If your collection is very small and you are worried you won’t get enough dry in time, you could try buying flats/terries and wraps as an alternative to your pocket or all in ones etc. They are a cheaper option and wraps can easily be reused without needing a wash.
Hopefully I’ve given you plenty of options to think about and that some will help you to dry your cloth nappies in the winter. If you think I’ve missed any, please do let me know in the comments so that others can read those too.
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