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Taking Care of Presents from Your Little Angel
Angelcare Nappy Bin
Member Name: Hishyeness
Angelcare Nappy Bin
Advantages: Discreet, practical, effective and easy to use.
Disadvantages: Cost of replacement cartridges over time.
Our local council, in its infinite wisdom, has decided that non-recyclable household waste will be collected twice a month. Putting aside the hotly debated issue of whether we should be using washable nappies or not (and believe me, from what I can see, these things are debated quite vigorously by mums at toddler play groups...) this obviously presents a problem for the parents of a newborn.
Although I entertained visions of a medieval trebuchet loaded with dirty nappies and pointed in the general direction of town hall as a reminder to our beloved councillors of that particularly nasty and pungent olfactory assault occasioned by infant poo, we clearly needed a more practical (and less illegal) solution to the large volume of dirty diapers Baby H produces.
With our first child, we invested in the Tommee Tippee Nappy Wrapper, which was a brilliant solution that seemingly could not be bettered - mainly because it was the only such product on the market at the time. However, time stands still for no man (or company) and good ideas are usually copied - and if as consumers we find ourselves lucky - improved upon. Enter the Angelcare Nappy Bin (ANB).
WHAT IS IT?
Made by a UK company based in Stoke-on-Trent (http://www.angelcare-uk.co.uk) the ANB is a white almost cylindrical hard plastic bin about a foot and a half tall and about a foot wide. It has a hinged lid at the top, and also a hinge halfway down the cylinder to facilitate emptying the bin.
It is relatively small, compact and non-descript and is also relatively well blessed in the looks department. It's a simply but well designed, robust and extremely practical (it can easily be used with one hand - an essential quality with an infant in the other).
Inside the top cover is a replaceable cartridge which holds a tube of translucent blue plastic that extends down through a spring-loaded flap into the belly of the bin. Disposing of a nappy is very easy. You simply open the lid, place it in the receptacle at the top of the bin and then push down until it disappears into the cavity below.
HOW DOES IT WORK?
When the nappy goes in, the flap pops back up, sealing the contents down below and preventing them from stinking out the place. When the bin is full, you open the container at the hinge halfway down by pressing the Angelcare-branded button at the front, and folding it back. The hinge is perfectly placed so that when folded, the head of the bin sits flush against the floor, providing a stable base for the next part.
Underneath the assembly for the flap is a simple cutting mechanism (helpfully labelled "Cutter") which consists of a shielded angled blade. You gather the plastic above the last nappy, leaving enough room to tie it off, and run it through the cutter. You then tie off the top of the plastic to seal the nappies in and dispose of them in your household waste as usual. As the nappies are wrapped, they won't smell nearly as bad while in the outside rubbish. You then tie off the bottom of the plastic to start a new chain, fold the bin top back until it snaps shut and you're in business again.
Cartridge replacement is simple. The cartridge is an O-Ring, with the plastic dispensed from out of the sides of the "O" and then pushed through the middle of the aperture. You lift off the top lid (there is a handle at the back) and lift out the old, empty cartridge and simply drop a new one in. You pull out a length of plastic wrapping, tie it off and then push it through the aperture.
DOES IT DO THE JOB?
It is a product that is best not seen and not smelled - and as such, it does a stellar job in both departments. Given its size, it is easy to leave it unobtrusively in a corner or under a counter, and even if its in plain sight, you won't notice it for the simple reason that it almost totally eliminates noxious nappy smells. It is also safe, easy to use and a doddle to clean.
AVAILABILITY & COST
To be fair, we were not intending to replace our old Tommee Tippee unit we still had from when our first child was in nappies. However, in the Bounty pack provided to my wife in hospital, there was a discount voucher entitling us to an ANB from Argos for the much-reduced price of £7.99. Ironically, we later found that it was available on Amazon (and still is) for £7.49, reduced from its usual RRP of £19.99.
The key with both systems (much like printers) is the cost of the replacement cartridges (you only need to buy the actual bin once, so the manufacturer makes their money from the consumables) and these, at £9.59 for a three pack on Amazon, compare very favourably to rival products (namely the Tommee Tippee at £5 to £8 for single cartridges depending on the model, or £14.99 for a three pack).
The first cartridge for the ANB is provided for free and lasts for about a month. The bin itself will hold around thirty nappies, so you will only need to empty it once or twice a week - especially as it is so effective at locking in odours. In addition, unlike its main competitor (the Tommee Tippee) you only need one type of cartridge from birth all the way through to the end of potty training.
There are some products as a new parent that are nice to have, some that look nice, and others that perform a vital function and can be classed as a must have. If you are intending to use disposable nappies, the ANB is simply a must have - especially at the vastly reduced price you can now get it for.
© Hishyeness 2009
Summary: A very effective nappy disposal system.