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Old 08-06-2011, 01:22 AM   #1
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Unhappy Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

OK, been CDing both kids for a while now without an issue at all... lately we've been getting ammonia issues. It's gotten to the point now that my son is waking up screaming in the middle of the night with ammonia burn! He is starting to use underwear during the day besides naps, but night time is just bad! We use Purex free and clear and never had an issue... I did notice the cap is different now and I'm wondering if they changed something else?... We do a cold cycle with scant amount of detergent and some baking soda, hot cycle with normal amount of detergent and a little more baking soda, hot cycle with nothing... We have hard well water with a softener that makes it about neutral. I really don't know what to change, but I'm so frustrated at this point I've considered going back to disposables! (Which I REALLLY would HATE to do... I think I'd break down! ) but I sit here typing this at 3am knowing I have to be up at 7 because my son woke up screaming with another burn! Any ideas?? Tips? Tricks? SOMETHING??

Oh, we use mostly natural fibers, BGE's and Econobums/Flips for the most part, so it's not a MF issue. I tried to strip them and it seemed to help for a couple of days, but came right back. I am really thinking it's got to be something with the detergent, the issues started when we started using this new bottle... I don't know what to switch to though, I can't afford anything much more expensive and want something we can use on everything and not buy different detergents for every load.

Thanks in advance for your help!!
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Old 08-06-2011, 01:49 AM   #2
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

I live in an area that has moderately hard water. I've noticed that my toddler's nighttime diapers will get ammonia, sometimes strong enough that it does make him red and is probably the start of a burn, if I don't wash w/a little bleach every 3-4 washes (I'm washing about 2-3x/week). Alternately, I've done "mini strips" where I add some dish soap in the pre-wash, then wash normally. That seems to help as well. I have also had success with boiling the inserts (we use hemp at night). You might have to incorporate the "ammonia-preventative-action" into your regular routine.
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Old 08-06-2011, 07:33 AM   #3
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

The only time DD ever got a rash was when I used baking soda in the wash. So if i were you maybe try not using it, but if it's ammonia it's probably detergent buildup. I was using too much Tide in my wash and that's when I started to get ammonia, I stripped them and starting using less soap and no more ammonia.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:00 AM   #4
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

I would use some bleach to kill the bacteria, maby a strip too. Just to get all the buildup out.
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Old 08-06-2011, 04:58 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by sarahannecloud9
I would use some bleach to kill the bacteria, maby a strip too. Just to get all the buildup out.
I would do the same and switch detergents. Also have less diapers in the wash with more water helps.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:02 AM   #6
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

Honestly, I think you should try switching up your detergent. Try switching to a different "mainstream" detergent. You might just try washing them in something different and if that doesn't work right away try stripping them and/or using a little bleach and continue with the different detergent. It seems like sometimes you have to switch things up to keep things clean. I don't know why. It's like the first time you use a new shampoo after using the same kind of a while. Your hair just feels better and cleaner because the new one works a little bit differently

GL!
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:04 AM   #7
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

We had some ammonia issues so I started really rinsing his morning diapers (bc those are always the most pee'd filled). I just let the insert (normally a prefold) sit in the toilet for awhile then spray it off & into the pail it goes & it has helped tremendously. Also maybe skip the detergent in the first cycle?! We do a warm rinse, hot wash with detergent & oxiclean (which includes a soak & extra rinse) and then a cold rinse. I have read other people have had success adding more detergent.
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:06 AM   #8
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

I use regualr purex and that seems to do fine for us. Maybe try a regular one. It's not expensive. I've never had a problem with it and I use the dry box kind, with a FL washer. Good luck! Poor kid!
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Old 08-06-2011, 08:15 AM   #9
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

I think there's a difference in liquid vs. powdered detergent, so maybe switch to a different mainstream detergent, and try the powdered form?

I was having problems with my diapers not getting clean enough (and my son was getting a bit rashy), so I started using Tide Free & Gentle (as much as I didn't want to!). It's really helped. I get the box of it.

I would have loved to keep using RnG all the time, and I do still use it if I don't have a big or messy load, but doing this really helped.

You'll probably want to strip your diapers first and get the ammonia under control, but tweaking your routine can help prevent it from happening again.
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Old 08-06-2011, 10:12 AM   #10
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Re: Ammonia buildup/burn... what to change in my routine?

I remember a post not too long ago about free n clear detergents causing buildup problems for some people.
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