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Home > Cloth Info > Preventing Leaks

Preventing Leaks

How to Prevent Leaks When Cloth Diapering

One of the most popular questions a new parent will ask is, “Why is my baby leaking out of  the diaper?” There are a few different reasons why a diaper may leak. Here is a explanation of the causes of leaks and how to prevent them, starting with the usual culprit:

The diaper cover is too big or too small.

If your baby is 18 pounds and using a diaper cover meant to be used for a baby in the 9-14 pound range, the diaper cover will simply not be sufficient and you will experience leaks. Parents who purchase a cloth diapering layette in the newborn and small sizes sometimes are frustrated when they have to buy the next size up right away. Remember the newborn and small sizes last for about 3-5 months, and in retrospect that is a small time period. When baby moves up to the medium size, that stage will last for at least a year, sometimes even up to two years. Our oldest son grew into the medium size Bummis Super Whisper Wraps around 4 months old and was almost two years old when he finally moved into the Large size! The biggest reason why baby will leak is because the diaper cover is simply too big or too small. It is very important to use the correct size of diaper cover for your baby.

There is not enough “diaper” for absorbency or the diaper has not been pre-washed and dried effectively.

If absorbency is the issue and you are using the economy diapers from the super discount store, then you have been experiencing leaks. It is simply not worth all the work of extra laundry to purchase the cheaper variety of diapers. So what if you’ve saved $12.00? Chances are those extra loads of laundry each week have eaten up any “savings,” not to mention your frustration level. So invest in quality diapers and if you have a heavy wetter, try using a doubler for added absorbency. One important note: when you purchase new diapers it is very important to pre-wash and dry them many times before using. If you are using unbleached diapers washing and drying are even more critical. New cotton contains many oils which need to be removed in order for the diaper to absorb. This is especially important for cloth diapers because they contain so many layers of cotton.

The diaper is not contained fully in the cover and moisture is wicking out onto clothing.

Once in a while a parent will accidentally let the diaper stick out the front or back of the cover and the moisture will wick out. To prevent this use the correct size of diaper to ensure a perfect fit. Make sure to place the diaper fully inside the diaper cover and you should have no problems.

Most importantly, remember to change baby every one to two hours.

 Diapers must be changed when they are completely soaked and saturated. Keep in mind that there is 100% cotton next to baby's skin, and not any super absorbent chemicals. You may have to change baby more often with cloth diapers, but we think your baby is worth it!

Changing your baby often is one of the most important measures to ensuring a leak-free diapering experience. When parents use high quality diapers and the right sized diaper covers, baby will be comfortable and leak-free!

©2004 Mary McCarthy is Mommy to three energetic young boys and the former owner of Comfy Bummy Diapers, She and her husband have been using cloth diapers (leak-free!) since their oldest son was born. *No content may be copied without written approval of site owners.