Line Drying Cloth Diapers in Monsoons?

cloth diapers
Watching the monsoons from the porch in India

A week and a half ago we left southern India for South Africa.  I packed along three day packs of Flip hybrid cloth diapers, which I love for travel because everything dries pretty quickly.  Three days worth is 6 reusable diaper covers and 18 reusable cloth inserts (I didn’t use or bring any disposable inserts).

I figured three days worth would be plenty, planning on washing the diapers every two days in India where I have a washing machine but not dryer.  That would allow me to still have one day’s worth of clean diapers while the others are drying.

What I didn’t plan for is that it would be monsoon season in August.  Usually the monsoons hit around June or July with relentless rains, and let up by August.  But thanks probably to our dear friend, Climate Change, August was what July usually is.  I’m not complaining- it cooled everything down, and there’s nothing quite like sitting on the porch watching the serenity of the monsoons pour down.  My toddler enjoyed many delightful naked dances in the warm rains.

Although we did have some sunny days in India, most days it was constant rain, which meant that it sometimes it took three days for my diapers to have a chance to dry.  Hanging wet cloth pads on a line where there is constant moisture in the air takes forever to dry.

It ended up working out, somehow, and I never did actually run completely out of diapers (although once I just used my last clean cloth insert when I found a few other inserts to be -mostly- dried and useable.  However, I ended having to pack about 12 damp cloth inserts in my suitcase to South Africa because they were not dry before we had to leave to the airport.  It wasn’t that big of a deal- they were still damp and a bit funky smelling when I unpacked them, but letting them air dry over night in dry South Africa did the trick to get rid of the moisture and funk.

If you are living or planning on traveling to a part of the world with monsoons or a relentless rainy season and are planning on using cloth diapers without a dryer, bear in mind that you may need at least four to five days of a cloth diaper stash to allow for extra drying time!

Now I have just a few more days left to enjoy being in South Africa with laundry service where I hand over the dirty diapers in the morning and get freshly cleaned and dried diapers returned to me in the afternoon.

Related Pages

All posts written about cloth diapering and travel

Flip Hybrid Diapers for Travel

Cloth Diapering for Travel?

How to Pack Cloth Diapers for Long Travel

How to Wash Diapers in a Foreign Country

Flying with Cloth Diapers?

2 thoughts on “Line Drying Cloth Diapers in Monsoons?”

    • I provide my own cloth diaper detergent to the laundry service and make it clear to them that I would like them to use that detergent and absolutely no other detergent or drying sheets, etc. I typically fill a small/medium piece of tupperwear with Rockin’ Green powder detergent that I pack in my suitcase. When I send the diapers to laundry service I measure out the amount they are to use in a reusable RUME bag (a ziplock bag size). They usually just use the detergent and wash the RUME bag along with the diapers.

      The first time I used a laundry service with cloth diapers I gave them detergent to use, but when the diapers came back I could smell that they also used something else (maybe dyer sheets). I nicely talked to them and explained that my daughter is very sensitive and allergic, and asked that they not use anything else- only what I give them. I ask them to also do one extra rinse. I make sure to tip the laundry service decently at the end of my stay (or at the beginning as well if it is a new place).

      Usually the diapers don’t seem quite as clean when I use laundry service then when I wash myself, often I think because they don’t use hot water for wash many places. When I wash my diapers at my sister-in-law’s in India there is no hot water hooked to laundry machine, either, so they just don’t get as clean. So when I go home I usually put all the diapers through a couple of wash cycles with very hot water, and that does the trick.

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