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So we just moved out of my family's house and into our own little house. I have my old Samsung HE FLer back instead of this new Kenmore my mom bought last year. It is the same city water so generally quite hard but variable depending on drought conditions. The Kenmore SUCKED, didn't have a prewash option, the manual didn't say how hot the "sanitize cycle" got, but since it never ruined or wore out anything ever and I used it every diaper wash for months, I am willing to bet it didn't even get too hot. The warm normal cycle on this washer did not get things clean.
My Samsung though, is awesome. It has a prewash option. It also has an ActivFresh option which releases silver ions into the wash to sanitize at any water temperature. I used this frequently in the past with great success. It gets funky odors out well. The manual says the Sanitary cycle washes at over 150 deg F!!! And even just the Hot wash they warn to use only on heavy duty fabrics so I think it's pretty hot. The Warm cycle would run colors and clean more than the Kenmore's warm cycle here. It is hard to know for sure though because we had much much softer water in our old house. I also love the Samsung because I can program all the cycle options and save them in a setting called My Cycle and then I can just hit My Cycle to run the same custom settings again and again - very handy for DH!
So anyway, here's my first experimental diaper load. I am seeing if I can forgo the bleach due to the ActivFresh option and putting oxy bleach in the prewash, and if the Hot wash will clean as well as the Kenmore's Sanitize/Extra Hot wash.
Heavy Duty cycle, Hot/Cold, High spin, Heavy Soil level
Options: Prewash, Extra Rinse, ActivFresh, extended spin
2 scoops Oxo Brite in drum, 7th Generation unscented liquid detergent to Line 3, 1/3 capful 7th Generation unscented fabric softener
Well, it IS a 2 hour + cycle!! With TLers you might have to rerun it but you only have to wait like 10-20 minutes. With the HEs, if you are doing heavy duty cycles, you can spend all day with the washer going nonstop and only get a few loads done.
I think it was a success! Zero odor whatsoever out of the washer, no hint of funk. I will stick with this routine for now and see how it holds up over time. It would be great to not require the bleach and sanitize washes anymore, that way I could save them for real emergencies!
Wow, that my cycle feature sounds great! I like our washer for the most part. It can get up to 203F and has a "baby cycle" which I use. My big complaint is that most cycles take 2hrs...the short cycle takes 29 mins but I think the rest are 90-120mins. I now run the short cycle on the diapers after the wash cycle to rinse everything out. Kind of wish we had a top loader but they're kind of hard to come by here.