Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Does Cloth Diapering really save money?

Saving Money with Cloth Diapers

In today's economy everyone is looking for ways to save some money. There are lots of websites out there telling you ways to save a few dollars here and there. I'm going to let you in on a little secret I discovered to help our family save... Cloth Diapers. Now I know cloth diapers aren't for everyone, but check out some of these figures...

After doing some research, I've found that the average age for potty training is right around 30 months, so lets figure your child is average (I know, it's hard to believe, but I'm picturing my daughter as average here too :)

According to WikiAnswers Newborns use 8-15 diapers per day, where children at 1 year of age use 5-6. So let's just says that for the 1st year, they use 10 diapers everyday... that results in 3,650 diaper changes. Newborn to size 3 diapers are about .20 per diaper... that's $730 on JUST diapers. That is not including disposable wipes which can be anywhere from .01 - .05 a wipe! So if you use an average of 2 wipes per change... that's 7,300 wipes at .02 a piece that's another $146. So we've spent $876 in the first year! 

Once babies grow, which sadly they all do, and become toddlers, the costs of diapering sky rockets! If you are blessed with a large toddler (in a size 5 or 6 diaper) you can expect to pay anywhere from $.30- $.40 per diaper! 

So just making a rough estimate... if your childs diaper gets changed 5 times a day in their 2nd year and 1/2 of life and their diapers cost an average of .30, you can expect to spend about $822, add in wipes and it's another $55, bringing it to $877.... which is a grad total of $1,754. I spent less on my first car!  I know there are ways you can save even on disposable diapers and wipes by using coupons or making your own wipes. Plus you will most likely be given some diapers as a gift (even if you tell everyone you are doing cloth). 

Now lets look at the cost of cloth:

The price for cloth diapers was figured using Infant size CPF diapers for the first 6 months and Premium CPFs from about 6 months until potty training. Plus the cost of 6 size small covers, 4 medium covers, and 4 large wrap style covers at $9.50 each. This should be enough diapers to do laundry every 3 days.
Cloth diapers - Most Economical Chinese Prefold Diapers with wrap style covers
0-6 months
36 CPFs
6 small size covers
total $117.00
6-30 months
24 CPFs
4 medium size covers
4 large size covers
total $132.00
Total Cost for Cloth Diapers and Covers

The following chart shows that you can use even premium pocket style diapers and still save significantly over the cost of disposable diapers. It compares the cost of FuzziBunz* One-Size diapers ($19.95 each, but discounted when buying in bulk). Fuzzi Bunz* fit most babies from birth to potty training. This should be plenty of diapers and inserts to do laundry every 3 days.
Cloth Diapers - Fuzzi Bunz One-Size (fits 8-35 lbs)
36 Fuzzi Bunz*
(15% off a cloth diaper purchase of $200 or more at 
Elegant Mommy)
$718.20 before discount
Total Cost for Premium Diapering System
Add $24.00 for 24 Cloth Wipes and Cloth Diapers cost you $273.00-$634.20 and they can be used for subsequent children as well.

(Pulled from* however I changed the brand of pocket diaper described.

Spending $600+ on a diaper system may come as a sticker shock, however there are many ways to save on that as well. If you launder more often you need less diapers. There are also many alternatives to the BumGenius diapers Personally I have invested just over $150 in cloth diapers and accessories, granted I did not start cloth until my daughter was over a year old, so she was already down to 5-6 changes a day.  

However, $600 now, Vs. $1,700 looks like $1,100 in your pocket!  

Some added benefits...if this is your first child, once you purchase cloth, they are yours and can be used on baby #2, 3, 7, 11! Also pocket diapers have a great resale value, so if this is your last child, it's not too late to try. You can still get about 50% of your investment back out of your higher end diapers as long as you take care of them. Keep posted for more tips on Cloth Diaper Care and specials!

1 comment:

Nataly said...

its too late to do cloth with our toddler but next baby we are for sure doing cloth . Saves so much money