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5 Simple Ways to Clean Your Pack and Play

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I love my Pack and Play!

It’s great for everyday use, travel, or visiting guests. But oh my, can they get dirty! Between spit-up, leaky diapers, and vomit, they can get nasty quickly!

This article will include:

  • The best way to clean a pack-and-play. Not to mention, they are a little big and awkward to clean!
  • The different cleaning agents you can use to get the job done.
  • Then, we will give you tips on cleaning the playpen mattress.

Let’s get started!

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Why You Should Clean Your Pack and Play

baby in  playpen

Here are several good reasons to keep your playpen clean.:

  • First, it’s important to prevent the spread of germs and bacteria. A playpen is perfect for babies to explore and put things in their mouths. Knowing this, you want to be sure it’s clean and a safe place for your baby.
  • Next, a clean playpen will be more comfortable for the baby. No one likes sleeping on a dirty surface. So you’ll want to give your little one a clean, cozy, and safe space to sleep.
  • Then, clean your playpen often. You’ll extend its lifespan and keep it looking new for longer.

What Supplies to Keep on Hand to Clean Your Pack n Play

  • White vinegar
  • Spray bottle
  • Baking soda
  • Baby safe laundry detergent
  • Dawn dish soap
  • Nature’s miracle
  • Bucket
  • Scrub brush
  • Sponges
  • Toothbrush

Baby Safe Disinfectant and Multi-Purpose Cleaners

These are nice to keep on hand for quick cleanups and disinfecting needs. A safe disinfectant is important for new parents with a new baby. These are some safe disinfectant and cleaner brands to try:.

The Best Methods to Clean Your Pack and Play

Vinegar, baking soda, cleaning supplies to clean pack and play
  • You will first want to wash the play yard’s crib sheets and mattress cover. Wash them in the hottest water recommended for the fabrics.
  • Remove the mattress. Included below are suggestions for cleaning the mattress.
  • Try to pick a sunny day to wash your Pack and Play. Sun drying will speed up the process and prevent mold and mildew.

Check out are a few of the best ways to clean your Pack and Play:

Vinegar Cleaning Solution

Vinegar is a natural and effective way to clean your baby’s playpen. To use vinegar to deep clean your playpen:

  • Mix equal parts vinegar and water in a spray bottle.
  • Use the vinegar solution to wet down the inside of the playpen.
  • Let the solution sit for a few minutes. Then wipe it down with a clean cloth.
  • Be sure to clean all the surfaces from top to bottom, inside and outside. You may need to repeat this process a few times to remove all the dirt and grime.
  • Rinse well with clean water.

Vinegar is a safe and effective option to deep clean your baby’s playpen. It is also an effective cleaner without using harsh chemicals. That’s why it’s often my cleaner of choice.

Household Soap and Water

Soap and water may seem like one of the obvious ways to clean your child’s playpen. But it is a really great way to get it clean and free of germs.

  • Fill a large container, bucket, or bowl with warm water and add mild dish soap.
  • Using a sponge, scrub brush, or cloth, scrub the walls and floor of the playpen. Pay close attention to areas that look filthy or grimy.
  • To clean the netting on your playpen, use a sponge on both sides of the mesh. Rub the sponges against each other. This action will clean the mesh without damaging it.
  • Rinse the playpen with clean water.
  • Use a clean cloth to dry the playpen well.

Baking Soda Solution

baby in playpen

Baking soda is a natural, effective method to get rid of dirt and grime.

To deep clean your playpen:

  • Start by removing all the toys, the fitted sheet, and the mattress cover. Then, mix a solution of one part baking soda and two parts water.
  • Use this mixture to scrub down all the surfaces with a damp cloth.
  • Pay special attention to any extra dirty areas.
  • Then, rinse the playpen with clean water. Allow it to air dry outside.

Baby Safe Laundry Detergent with Lavender Essential Oil

Baby safe laundry detergent is an easy method to clean your child’s playpen.

Add the detergent to a bucket of warm water. Add a few drops of lavender essential oil. Scrub the inside and outside of the playpen. Rinse it well and let it air dry outside.

Deep Clean Your Pack and Play

Deep clean your playpen in the bathtub when it becomes filthy. This is true especially if it is a used pack-and-play.

The manufacturer does not generally recommend this method. Be sure to do your research first. These are some suggestions to wash your playpen in the tub:

  • Take out the mattress and any sheets or objects
  • Fill the bathtubs with the warmest water the manufacturer allows.
  • Add 1/2 cup baby-safe laundry detergent, 1/2 cup vinegar, and 1/4 cup baking soda.
  • Using gloves, dissolve the cleaning agents by swishing the water around.
  • Place the folded Pack and Play into the water and soak for an hour or so.
  • If the playpen is not submerged, turn it over after 30 minutes.
  • Drain the water (you will likely have pretty dirty water!) and scrub all parts and sides of the playpen well.
  • Rinse well using the shower head or buckets of water.
  • Dry the playpen with a towel and set it outside in the sun to air dry.
  • Ahhhhh, beautifully clean Pack and Play!?

You can disinfect your Pack n Play with a baby-safe disinfectant. See the list of safe disinfectants above. I like to do this in between deep cleaning.

How to Clean Pack n Play Mattresses

baby in playpen
  • Do not submerge the mattress in water.
  • Spray the crib mattress with a vinegar/water solution. Or you can use a baby-safe household soap and water solution.
  • Scrub the bed with the cleaning solution and a sponge.
  • Use a toothbrush to get the rimmed edges of the mattress.
  • Rinse the mattress well with a clean sponge.
  • Dry with a towel and set it outside to dry.
  • Consider buying a waterproof mattress cover to protect your mattress. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Often Should You Clean Your Pack and Play?

How often you clean your playpen depends on how much your baby uses it. And also how well you keep up with regular maintenance. A good rule of thumb is to clean the playpen at least once a week.

Can You Use Bleach to Clean Your Pack and Play?

The Graco Pack n Play website recommends not to use bleach to clean your Pack n Play.

How to Clean Poop Out of Pack and Play

1. Use a paper towel to remove solid pieces of poop.?
2. Blot soiled area with fresh paper towel and water.
3. Try using 1/4 cup cold water and two tablespoons of enzymatic cleaner. Scrub with the solution, rinse, and air dry.
4. Another product to try is Nature’s Miracle. It’s a pet stain remover that has enzymes that eat away at bacteria.
5. Dawn anti-bacterial soap and some warm water is another great option.

How to Clean Your Pack N Play Bassinet

1. Remove any items from the bassinet, including sheets and blankets.
2. Spot clean any stains with baby-safe soap and water solution.
3. Spray all surfaces with a baby-safe disinfectant spray.
4. Wipe down all surfaces well with a clean cloth.
5. Let the bassinet air dry.

baby in playpen

Final Thoughts

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends regular cleaning of your child’s toys. This recommendation is important to remove dirt and germs.

I found the best time to wash my children’s baby toys is when I wash my child’s sheets. Also, perform regular spot cleaning of your Pack and Play as necessary. 

So there you have it! Five simple ways to clean your pack and play. None are too difficult, but they will help keep your play yard looking and smelling fresh.

Try one of these the next time you need to clean up your pack n play. Be sure to let us know how they work for you in the comments below!

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