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Thread: Cloth Diapers Leak Badly

  1. #1

    Default Cloth Diapers Leak Badly

    I have heard that cloth diapers and plastic pants are better than disposable when it comes to leakage, but whenever I wear them they leak! Am I doing something wrong?

  2. #2


    Every diaper will leak if you exceed its capacity, but cloth diapers are different. You can get to know the feel of a disposable when it's close to full. You can tell by the squishiness or how far the wetness has wicked up the back. But cloth diapers have no SAP, so they don't get squishy, and they wick constantly and everywhere. That makes it really hard to tell when the diaper is close to capacity, and learning that takes time and practice, just like you had to do with your disposables.

    Cloth diapers have a few things going for them, though:
    - If they're what float your boat, there is absolutely no replacement for them
    - They wick well, so you never use just the front of your diaper
    - They absorb everywhere, making them the ONLY real protection for side-sleeping bed-wetters

    Oh, and some say they're better for the environment. But that's another post.


  3. #3


    Thank you for your reply. The problem is I do one wetting and they leak.

  4. #4


    Hmm. Well, okay, what kind are you using? And are the plastic pants separate from the diaper or are they an all-in-one garment?


  5. #5


    You probably need a thicker diaper or at least a more absorbent one. Perhaps try a stuffer or change more often.

  6. #6


    I've only recently gotten into cloth, and only have used pocket diapers (no plastic pants). They are definitely different. I leaked with first use, so I picked up an extra stuffer and that helped. The biggest thing I notice is the wicking. It could just be the diaper I have, but they tend to wick out to the sides giving a wet feeling on my legs which isn't very comfortable. I still really like them though.

  7. #7


    Quote Originally Posted by littlekorkor View Post
    Thank you for your reply. The problem is I do one wetting and they leak.
    What kind of set up are you using? You can also add layers until they fit your needs. My cloth setup is quite thick and can last quite some time. If you are using prefolds, and have more than one or, try sandwiching a bath towel folded up in to the center.

    If you are using a typical 4x8x4 layered prefold, they won't hold nowhere near a premium disposable diaper such as Bambino, or Abena. It holds water like a towel unlike disposables that are absorbed and turned in to a gel.

    I'm guessing your diapers are brand new? You should wash and dry your diaper several times before you pass judgement. Your diapers will get thicker, fluffier, and more absorbent. This will also increase the capacity. Typically performing 5 cycles (little to no soap required) will break them in and remove natural waxes and other things from the manufacturing process. The more you wash them with use, the softer they will be. They will shrink somewhat, so be careful of the size your ordering and see if they have a shrinkage chart. Remember to not use bleach or fabric softener. They will affect the diaper's function and deteriorate it.

    You can also purchase toddler prefolds for stuffers.

    Control your wetting, don't flood your diaper. When you pee, you're basically using the exact spot with every drop that comes out. When you're sitting, you are creating a soft barrier that will absorb more slowly in the back, because of the pressure of weight from you sitting. The pee collects in the front and when the area between your privates and sitting point gets full, it has nothing to absorb it. It pools up until it breaches the barrier of your plastic pants or until it is absorbed over time by the rest of the fabric. The same can be said about disposables.

    Take these steps and let me know if things improve.

  8. #8


    If it helps, I use night weight gauze pre-fold diapers, which have to be pinned with diaper pins. I have a 32" waist so I wear small size, Leakmaster high back plastic pants. They're tight around the legs and waist. But if you flood a diaper beyond its capacity, pee will puddle in the bottom of your plastic pants, and then they will leak. If you're going to pee a lot, you can always double diaper, that is, pin on two cloth diapers, one on top of the other.

  9. #9


    if I have been drinking a lot of liquids I will use 2 prefold diapers with pins when I sleep, I keep one size larger vinyl pants on hand so it will cover both diapers. I allmost never have a leek that way.

  10. #10

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