Well this is one time that this grandmother can say "they don't make them like they used to!". My granddaughter's playpen has a cloth border all around the top. But I remember my daughter's playpen and that had a vinyl border I could wipe down as needed. As far as I know kids still bite the top border of their playpens, they also touch them all the time with hands that are not always clean. So what are you supposed to do with a cloth border when it gets dirty? I thought it would be like the high chair where you take off the covers and put them in the wash. But when we tried to take off the cloth borders around the top of my granddaughter’s playpen, we found they do not come off! My daughter “Googled” the issue and what she found were other frustrated users asking the same questions.
So how do you clean this Chicco play pen? As unbelievable as it may sound, we had to hose it down the old fashion way.
1. My daughter made a solution of part Tide liquid detergent and part Lysol All Purpose Cleaner.
2. Her husband carried the entire playpen to the back-yard.
3. There she scrubbed it with a dish washing sponge using the solution she had prepared and he hosed the soap off.
4. Once completely free of soap and dripping in water, he brought it in the house.
5. We then placed it under a ceiling fan and over a couple of towels to pick up the excess water.
6. Left to dry overnight.
Admittedly it now looks like new, but I would not recommend this playpen. I can’t help but think, what about if they didn’t have a yard? How can someone in an apartment without a balcony clean this playpen? How can such a good company (their products are well made using good quality materials) not have thought of how to deal with such a basic issue? I hope they do in the near future because I have another granddaughter on the way! But I can say that my daughter will make sure her next playpen will either be of a type where the top border covers can be wiped down or easily removed to be washed.
For those ladies expecting babies soon or planning to in the future, I recommend the same advice. We initially took for granted that the covers would all be removable but now know that is not always the case. Buyers beware!