This may not work for everyone. I'm just gathering the info I have found over the years that have worked super well for us. I do load sof research before i try anything. There are so many help me posts every day, I thought I would try to help. Just from a moma to a moma!
I have never had issues with ammonia other than fsot dipes. I had one batch I thought would never get clean.
Here is what I found to work that has not failed me yet:
My water heater is cranked and puts out water 145 deg.
I load the tub with everything (but wool).
Handheld shower sprayer works best, fill with HOT till it's all covered and quirt a generious amnt of dawn on everything. Slosh it all in or use the sprayer. When the water cools enough to slip those feet in, stomp wash. Add more HOT water and repeat this a cpl times during the day. Let soak over night. (if you have hard water, add a softner like borax or calgon to help the dawn do it's job.) Rinse well the next am and toss in the washer for 2 washes with 1/4 cup original bleach or more. It sometimes takes a cpl go rounds with bleach to kill all of the bacteria. Use HOT washes!
Then you should have a fresh start.
Now trouble shoot your wash routine!
-Dirties need plenty of ventilation. They also need to stay cool.
-Try to wash close to every other day if poss. You need enough diapers to grind against each other to get the job done. Not too many or there isn't enough room for them to slosh in the water.
-A prewash is very important to rinse out the old urine and bm.
Warm-hot is best as human wasts are more soluable in warmer temps. Blood is an exception and the hot will set the proteins.
many momas have luck with cold, this just works best for us.
-I'm a bit of a health/laundry/chem dork.
-Do you have hard or soft water?
--Hard hater needs more detergent or a softner like borax or calgon. It boosts the cleaning power of your detergent, softens the water, blocks the hard water minerals, and lets the minerals wash away rather than setteling on the fibers. It will NOT removes the minerals allready in the fibers, just prevents. To learn more, visit calgon.com.
--For soft water, you need less detergent or you will end up withtoo many suds and residue or buildup on the material.
-Are there suds in the final rinse?
--Some suds can be from aggitation, some won't hurt a thing. Hot water and some water types can have a foggy look and suds that MAY be normal for your water. Big, soapy bubbles mean you have too much detergent still in the fibers.
-Are you using enough detergent?
--Many laundry issues are simply because you are not using enough detergent. 1 tsp is just simply not enough to clean diapers.
-Do you use a natural of main stream detergent?
--Natural detergents are great for the enviroment. The fact is that they just don't get the diapers clean enough. You arn't alone.Momas post here every day with stinkies using natural "cd"detergents. perhaps it's time for something stronger?
--Don't fear enzymes. They simply eat away at the soils. Bac-Out is a great example! There is another called kids and pets sold at walmart for super cheap. This stuff rocks. Tide for an example, has enzymes in it.
-Do you bleach?
--1/4 cup of original bleach (not scented or splashless, or some generics). You have to have the one with the 6% disinfecting ingredient in it. Some only contain like 2%.
--I have persionally bleached every load for almost 7 yrs now.I have yet to see the damage some manufacturers talk about. I have some faded wipes, dyed pf's, and fitteds. that's not important to me though. I want clean.
-I have a fl'er so only use 1/4 cup, but Clorox told me 3/4 is what they recomend for any sized load of diapers. I would only rec this much in an old style tl'er because of soooo much water.
-Oxy is a great prewash additive!
-Have you tried LIQUID DETERGENT?
--I had a thread a while back with my almost 2 hr talk with tide mgmnt a while back. They say their liquid if formulated to rinse cleaner in most water types than their powder.
--I have know that for ever though. From hard to soft water, only liquid worked well for us.
--Tide ultra, it's only a concentrated version of the old tide. It get's more concentrated about every 8-10 years. They only removed fillers. So no need to be scared of the stuff.
--Tide original still exists! I use it, always have. It's the liquid formula!
My wash routine that has remained basically the same the whole time I have cd'd:
27 min quickwash cycle on HOT with nothing, sometimes 2 scoops generic sunoxy for really nasty loads.
Sanitise cycle with either tide original liquid he or dropps and 1/4 cup bleach.
60 min dryer on high heat.
-Make sure your diapers are getting really dry!
-A dryer may add wear to your aplix, but did you know... It greatly reduces the moisture levels in the material, kills germs, softens material, and doesn't hurt pul. If you have a cover leaking, it's recomended to toss it in the dryer on high heat for a few mins to reseal the pul!
-Don't be worried about the warrenty garbage. They just keep adding restrictions. Like enzymes for example. CB had a chemist do a reasearch and publish a paper for them. He said some babies may be sensitive to enzymes, but no way will it hurt the fabric. Yet they still have that clause in their warrenty. I do have to give them a thumbs up because they do recomend bleach, along with a cpl other big cd co's. Yay for them!
So do what works for you! Start with the detergent you normally use, don't be afraid to wash those dirty diapers for what they are and not collectables, and ya know...you already know how to wash laundry!!
While some of these tips may not work for every family, it may help you find what works for you which is all that matters!
I know I forgot some things, if i remember I will add.