How to Clean a Pack 'n Play?
Pack 'n Plays provide convenience, but they can also get very dirty, as babies spend a good amount of time in them. If your Pack 'n Play is only lightly dirty, you can try scrubbing it down with laundry detergent and water. If it's thoroughly grimy, submerging it in soapy water in the bathtub may work better.
Scrubbing Down a Pack 'n Play
Place it in an area you don't mind getting wet.
Take the Pack 'n Play outside or in your garage. When scrubbing it down, you're likely to get soap and water everywhere, so you'll want to be somewhere you can drip a little bit. Take the mattress out to wash separately.
If the mattress has a cover, take it off, and put it in the washing machine.
Make a cleaning solution.
Add a 1/2 a cup (120 milliliters) or so of detergent to a bucket of warm water. Agitate the water to make sure the detergent is mixed in. Submerge a clean cloth or soft brush in the water.
Scrub the Pack 'n Play.
Use the solution to scrub down the whole Pack 'n Play, inside and out. You may need to add support on one side with your hand as you scrub the other, particularly on the mesh. Pay special attention to dirty areas. Scrub the mattress, as well.
Rinse it thoroughly.
Use a jet stream setting on your hose to rinse down the Pack 'n Play inside and out. Hold the mattress up, and spray down both sides until the water runs clean. Shake the mattress a little bit to get excess water off of it.
Let it dry.
Leave the Pack 'n Play and the mattress outside to dry in the sun. Aim for a warm day. If it hasn't dried in a day, you may want to place it outside again the next day. The sun will also help sanitize the Pack 'n Play.
Performing a Deep Cleaning
Place the Pack 'n Play in the bathtub.
Take the mattress out of the Pack 'n Play, and fold up the frame. The whole Pack 'n Play and mattress will fit in most bathtubs. If yours doesn't fit all at once, you may need to do it in parts. Begin filling up the tub with warm to hot water.
You can use the frame to hold the mattress down in the water.
As the tub is filling up, pour in a mixture of detergent, vinegar, and baking soda. You'll need about 1/2 a cup (120 milliliters) of laundry detergent, 1/4 cup (60 milliliters) of baking soda, and 1/4 cup (60 milliliters) of vinegar. If you're using powdered detergent, you may want to mix it with water before adding it to the tub.
Soak the Pack 'n Play.
Once the you've added the soap and filled up the tub so the Pack 'n Play is submerged, leave it to soak for at least an hour. If it's not completely submerged, flip it after half an hour, and leave it for another thirty minutes.
Rinse it thoroughly.
You can rinse it in the tub if you have a removable shower head. If not, you'll need to take it outside to rinse it down with a hose. Try to rinse out all the soap and grime. If your Pack 'n Play was especially dirty, you might want to start over again with soaking it in soapy water.
Let it air dry in the sun.
Set up the Pack 'n Play outside on a sunny day, preferably a warm day. Lay out the mattress so it gets air flow around it. You may need to prop it up and then turn it over partway through the drying process. Let the sun completely dry your Pack 'n Play before putting it back in use.
Maintaining the Pack 'n Play
Soak up spills.
Try to get spills up as soon as they happen. Use a towel or paper towels to get as much liquid up as you can before trying to spot clean the area. You may need to hold the towel on an area or dab at it to soak up all the liquid.
Spot clean the Pack 'n Play.
Wipe down any area that gets dirty, particularly on the plastic and metal parts. You can also wipe down the fabric. Try using a gentle cleaner, such as a natural cleaner or one part water to one part white vinegar. Dry it off, or let it dry before putting your kid back in the Pack 'n Play.
Always test the cleaner in an inconspicuous space first.
Wash the mattress cover regularly.
If your mattress has a cover or if you slip a sheet on it, be sure to wash it often. Take it off, and throw it in the wash. Dry it thoroughly in the dryer, and then put it back on the mattress. Wash the cover at least once a week.
Of course, if you don't want to wash your pack n play mattress frequently and find it troublesome, I suggest that you keep more waterproof pack n play mattress pad, your baby will get dirty at any time, so that you can take it off in time and put it in the washing machine for good cleaning, but also to extend the life of the mattress.
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