Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Wonder Wash!

Two weeks ago, I sent McKay a link to this thing called a Wonder Wash. I thought it was an interesting concept but McKay responded with a, "Do you want that for our anniversary?" Wait, what?

We aren't impulse shoppers so his response caught me off guard. I wasn't intending on buying it, just admiring it.

In the end, we decided to buy each other gifts: he got Portal and I'm getting some unknown book that he ordered for me. And we bought a Wonder Wash because it made sense to have one.

How pretty!

I've done 2 "loads" of diapers in it. It can take 5 pounds of laundry, which is about as many diapers as we go through in a day.

We first had to figure how much detergent to use. We use Rockin' Green and after doing some calculations based on how much water a washer uses compared to our Wonder Wash, it turned out that we only need 1/5 of a teaspoon of detergent in a wash. I add a drop of tea tree oil or grapefruit seed extract depending how I'm feeling and which bottle is easier to find.

You just need to turn the handle at one rotation a second for 2 minutes! I also do two 30 second rinses after the initial wash. I keep forgetting to add vinegar to the rinse, but I plan on doing that in the future.

Then I wring the laundry out and hang it to dry. With toddler interruptions and wearing a baby (I go slower so as not to bump him awake), it takes about half an hour to 40 minutes to do all that. That's about the same amount of time a wash in a washing machine takes, which didn't surprise me and is what I expected. I remember reading in my Women's Studies class that housekeeping takes women just as much time as it did a century ago despite the fact that we have vacuums and washers and Swiffers. Don't modern appliances just make you feel so liberated?

My observations:

You do need to go at the pace suggested; if you spin it too fast, the centrifugal force will keep the laundry on one side of the washer. Going slower means there is more agitation because it moves around in the washer.

It's a nice arm workout. I'm going to be so buff!

The first day the suction cups weren't working well because the counter was wet, but it was nice and steady today. We have granite counter tops.

Wringing out the water from the laundry is the hardest part. I didn't do a good job of it yesterday so the laundry didn't dry by the end of the day. I was more meticulous about that when I did the wash this morning.

I put a prefold under the washer because when you remove the drain tube, you get a little leakage.

The washer will pay for itself in laundry quarters in about 2 months.

This is how much a load is.
You can see we have a variety of flats, prefolds, pocket diapers, and toddler panties to clean!

So far I'm liking it. My plan is to do a load of diapers every morning and hang them out to dry in the sun to get the stains out and disinfect them more (hello, thrush!). We will still be using the coin washer for our clothes and bedding and bath towels.

Disclosure: We bought the Wonder Wash on our own and the company does not know I'm writing this review. Other products noted (Portal, Rockin' Green, Swiffer) were just mentioned in passing.


  1. Anonymous3:32 PM

    That's a lot more diapers than I thought it would hold!

  2. First, I feel lucky to have a washer and dryer available to me at home.

    Next, I totally use Rock'n Green too! If it takes that much less and gets the same amazing results... I think I need to look in to the Wonder Wash.

    Also, I own the same drying rack. I use it for my non-dryer-dryable things, like wet bags and certain diaper covers.

    It's always nice to find someone who enjoys the same products I do. Cloth diapering whilst attending school has been an adventure but we manage somehow!

  3. Cool gadget. I agree, wringing out wet laundry is the pits. I basically hand-washed diapers for a summer in France and I was so tired of wringing them out by the end. I wonder if you could snoop around for an antique wringer on craigslist or antique stores...

  4. Wow, that is a lot more than I expected it to do too! That is very cool. I saw a wash board at Goodwill yesterday and considered buying one "just in case" and maybe for some homeschooling fun in the future, but then decided against it because I am anti-clutter and I won't use it in my decor.

  5. "I remember reading in my Women's Studies class that housekeeping takes women just as much time as it did a century ago despite the fact that we have vacuums and washers and Swiffers. Don't modern appliances just make you feel so liberated?"
    --So not surprised about that, but it made me laugh. As did McKay's question at the beginning.

    I've admired these things for years, and I'd love to hear more in a couple weeks how it's still doing. I'm not sure where I'd use it (we have granite too, but I don't think that kitchen use would be appreciated) except maybe outside on the glass deck table. I'd kind of like to use it for my massage linens (seems like a lot less wear'n'tear) but wringing and hanging sheets... Maybe the towels after a walk-in day.

    Thanks for the review!

  6. That's so awesome! It'd be great for dishcloths/kitchen towel loads too I bet!

  7. our washer just broke and i had to rinse a whole load of prefolds in the sink to get the suds out– i am so close to ordering this RIGHT NOW!

  8. Arual- We may increase to 1/4 teaspoon, but I don't want to do too much and have issues rinsing it out.

  9. I bet your hands are sore from all that wringing... but such a cool gadget :)

    Portal is such a fun game - I hope you both get to enjoy playing it!!

  10. Did I read that right? Two minutes to wash??

  11. Yes, 2 minutes. You could go longer if you wanted to. I find that they need a little more rinsing to get all the detergent out, so sometimes I do 45 second or 1 minute rinses instead of the two 30 second rinses.

  12. I'm actually seriously considering getting this. We might be moving into a 2 bedroom apartment, but it has no washer and dryer, and I really want to keep using cloth diapers. Is it still going well?

    I love hearing about Isaac and Margaret! I'm glad you still post, even though it's less frequent. :)

  13. Hello there. Currently, I'm 29w5d pregnant with my 3rd and desperately wanting to CD this go 'round.

    I know this is an old post, but I stumbled upon your site on a search for a solution for washing cloth diapers without a washer and dryer. I've been told waiting a week to launder pre-rinsed and air dried CDs will not work. So I continue to search.

    I found the Wonder Wash in my search, but was unable to find anyone who had good things to say regarding washing CDs. Then I found you. I am encouraged. So my question is, how long did you CD in this manner? Did you run across any problems with stink, rashes, etc?

    So far this is seems to be the one true solution to my situation. I hope you respond.

    1. The Wonder Wash was great for pre-soaking. Just fill it up with water and add diapers. It was almost like having a "wet pail." We had to do a wash every day because if we waited more than that, we'd have too many diapers to wash in just one load. And we did lots of rinses. The most time consuming part was waiting for it to drain. While it drained, I did other things: cook breakfast, read, do dishes, get ready for the day, etc.

      We used it for about a year. I actually think now that we have a new baby again, we should go back to using it even though we have access to a washer and dryer now. I think no matter what you do- even in a washer and dryer- diapers are going to stink and need stripping. We use Rockin' Green and that helps limit the stink from build-up, but it doesn't do it 100%. If you don't want to boil them (which I totally understand!), if you have a dishwasher, you can wash them in that without any soap to strip them.

      The only diaper rashes my kids have had have been from medical issues: thrush, food sensitivities, etc. and never from a diaper. As long as you change them regularly, they should be good! Many cloth diapers use a fabric that wicks moisture away from the skin and prevent rashes.

  14. Dunno if I'll get a response to this but.. how many pocket diapers and inserts can you put into the Wonder Wash for one load? I was told 5 articles per load, but with the picture you posted it looks like you put A LOT more than that.


Please review my blog comment policy here before commenting. You may not use the name "Anonymous." You must use a Google Account, OpenID, or type in a name in the OpenID option. You can make one up if you need to. Even if your comment is productive and adding to the conversation, I will not publish it if it is anonymous.