Re: Can a prefold go bad?
I have a dozen or so flats from when my MIL cd my husband (almost 30 years now) and they are softer, more absorbant and bigger than any I have found to buy so far (not that I am shopping for MORE flats) only one has a minor wear hole. And interestingly they have "fold" line guides WOVEN into them!! I WISH modern flats had that! It is really really neat!
I would suggest going ahead and using them until you start to notice that the snappi rips more.. and the fabric doesnt "recover" in the wash. Most likely at that point the fabric is starting to dry rot... It is also entirely possible to combine 1-2 together to make one again and really extend the life if you can sew a straight seam or know someone that can. I would NOT ever use bleach. I would also try to not OVER dry them.. as in leaving in the hot dryer well past when they are dry. With my variety of CD styles I use, I find this is VERY easy to do - often I try to remember to pull my flats out after 10-15 min. and let them finish on a drying rack because my Kissaluvs take much longer and my flats get baked if they stay the whole time until the Kissas are completely dry.