Cloth Diaper Leaks: How To Solve Your Problems
Cloth diaper leaks can quickly become a nightmare. A leaky diaper can mean wet clothes, wet bedding, wet you. It can turn into a realy headache when they leak frequently, and even worse, at night. I have been there and trust me, it's awful.
My youngest son Jace is a heavy wetter. He gave a whole new meaning to leaking cloth diapers. With my older son I never really had that problem. I had read about heavy wetters, but was just glad I didn't have one. Now I do, and now I know why it's so difficult. Of course there are other reasons why a diaper may leak, but I suspect this is the most common.
Why Does A Cloth Diaper Leak?
The main reasons a cloth diaper will leak are because either there is not enough absorbency, your baby pees so much so fast that the diaper cannot absorb it fast enough, or the diaper does not have the proper fit. Sometimes a cloth diaper leak can be due to repelling, but that is not usually the reason.
Fixing the problem can be very simple, but it will take some troubleshooting to figure out why your cloth diapers are leaking. Here are some tips to help you get started.
Flats, Prefolds & Fitted Diaper Leaks
* If you are having a leak with either prefolds, flats or fitted diapers, first check to see how wet the diaper itself is. If it is soaking wet, you know you need more absorbency, or possibly to change the baby more often.
* If the diaper is leaking after a very short time, you most likely need to add more absorbency. A doubler will help these diapers last longer. Some heavy wetting babies can't go very long in a prefold or flat without a doubler.
* If the diaper is not very wet, but it is leaking, it may be a fit issue. Check the legs of the diaper to see if it's gaping at all. Check the cover to make sure it is completely covering the diaper, with no gaping anywhere.
* If you are having leaks with pocket diapers first check to see if the insert is wet. If the insert is soaking wet, then you need more absorbency. You can add a doubler, or possibly find a more absorbent insert. Some pockets have thinner inserts I have noticed.
* If the insert is only somewhat wet, it's possible that your baby is peeing so much so fast that the stay dry inner is not able to allow that much urine to pass through at once to the absorbent insert. This is a common problem with heavy wetters.
* If the insert is not wet at all then check the diaper for a proper fit. Make sure there are no gaps at the legs, etc. If the diaper is on properly then most likely the diaper is repelling.
Repelling means that the diaper is no longer absorbing, and that is usually caused by detergent build up. If this is the case then you will need to strip your diapers, and possibly switch detergents. The only time I have had repelling diapers is because of a specific detergent I used. Once I stopped using it, the problem went away.
AIO & AI2 Diapers
* For AIO's make sure the soaker part of the diaper is wet. If it is soaking wet, then add more absorbency. Some of these types of diapers easily accommodate a doubler, but some don't. You may also need to change your baby more often. Many AIO diapers are not as absorbent as other types of diapers - especially for a heavy wetter.
* If the diaper is not very wet, it could very well be a fit issue. Check to make sure the diaper isn't gaping anywhere and is on right. Some diapers just need to be adjusted.
* If you are using an AI2 and are having leaks, make sure the insert is positioned correctly. Often the soakers of AI2's are smaller than the shell, so if they are not in right it's possible for them to shift, causing the urine to miss them.
* If the soaker is saturated, then need to either add a doubler, or change the baby more often.
A compression leak is when the weight of a child presses against a wet diaper causing the urine to 'press out'. I hear this happening often when a baby is in their car seat, because that's when they are putting the most pressure on their diaper.
Microfiber inserts are one of the biggest cause of compression leaks, but it's possible with any type of diaper - especially with tightly fitting clothing or diaper covers. The best way to beat a compression leak is to make sure you have enough absorbency and not wear too tight clothes or diaper cover, especially in the car.
Other Reasons For Leaks
If none of the above reasons seem to be the cause of the cloth diaper leaks, it could very well be the construction of the diaper. Unfortunately there are just some diapers out there that are cheap. They are made with low quality materials that don't keep the mess in, or start to break down in the wash. I have seen mamas complain over this before and I feel for them. It is important to know who you are buying from, and if you can get a warranty for the clot diaper, even better. I have had issues with diapers that come with a warranty, and been very happy! I always sent the diaper in and got a new one in return.
Ebay has many cloth diaper makers selling their wares. I have heard many horror stories of moms who bought 'Ebay diapers'only to realize they wasted their money. There are a couple of brands that are reputable that sell on Ebay - so not all are bad. But beware! If you are not buying from a big company, or a store that has some sort of guarantee, then do lots of research and ask around for reviews. You will be glad that you did.
And one more reason for leaking cloth diapers is it is just plain old and worn. Especially with microfiber. If a diaper is very worn it will start to loose it's absorbency. If you are using something like this, it's best to ditch it for something newer.
If you have tried troubleshooting your cloth diaper leaks and still need help, feel free to contact me! I have had to deal with these issues alot and I know how frustrating it is. I will be more than happy to try to help you.
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