I think you've basically answered the question already. It's not hard to determine when you need to change. Since I went 24/7 for #1 use 3 years back, I've got really good judging my diaper's condition by just wearing it. I think it helps to find a brand of diaper that works for you and wear it all the time, because then it kind of becomes a part of your body and your diaper sort of communicates with your brain in sutle ways like the dampness of the top sheet, the saggyness, and the weight of it. Once you know how your brand performs, you can get very good at telling when you're about to leak. That's where I'm at with northshore supremes, I know the limits of them very well!