Malem Bedwetting Alarm

Frequently Asked Questions & Troubleshooting Guide


Click on question to open answer

1. How do I test my Malem alarm to confirm that it is working?

Lift the lever on the sensor to open the sensor jaws. If a white plastic packing strip is in the sensor, remove it. Clip the top of the sensor cord into the hole at the bottom of the alarm box. Lower the lever on the end of the sensor cord so that the metal jaws inside the sensor make contact. The alarm should sound and/or vibrate. To stop the sound, lift the lever at the end of the sensor cord. Then press the reset button on the side of your alarm box. The sound/vibration should stop. **Note: 2 of the alarm sounds on the Yellow and Gold 8-Tone alarms do not shut off immediately. This is a design feature which promotes wakefulness. When testing the alarm, if it does not turn off right away, let the alarm finish the sound cycle and press the reset button again if necessary.

2. What type of underwear is best to use?

Thick, absorbent, cotton underwear is best to use with these alarms. Also, the underwear should be close fitting (no boxer shorts) so that the sensor is held close to the body to more quickly detect moisture.

3. Where should I clip the sensor of the Malem alarm?

The Easy Clip sensor should be clipped to the outside of the underwear about where you think the first drops of moisture will appear. This will vary slightly depending upon whether your child sleeps on his/her stomach or back. In general, clip the sensor to the front, outside of the underwear (y-fold area of a boys brief) for boys, and down lower towards the crotch area for girls.

4. Can I use the Malem alarm with pull-ups or other disposable pants?

In most cases, you shouldn’t use an alarm with disposable pants. First, the highly absorbent materials can easily “wick away” moisture when your child wets and prevent the alarm from sounding appropriately. The result is a missed learning opportunity and the potential for mistakenly thinking that your child was dry. Secondly, it is very difficult to monitor progress, especially as your child reduces the amount he wets. Most alarms are designed to be used with cloth underwear.

5. When I got my Malem alarm there was a small piece of white plastic in the sensor. What is this for?

This is simply a piece of packing material. It should be discarded before you begin using your alarm.

6. How do I attach the alarm to my child’s clothing?

The sensor should be clipped to the outside of your child’s underwear. To clip it on, simply pinch a piece of the underwear fabric, place it in-between the metal sensor jaws, and snap the tab down to secure. The alarm box unit should be placed on the shoulder area of your child’s pajama top. Use the built-in safety pin to secure it to your child’s shirt. Run the cord underneath your child’s pajama top to prevent excessive pulling on the cord or sensor.

7. I tested my alarm as described above and it worked, but it did not sound when my child wet his bed. What should I do?

Make sure that you are attaching the sensor correctly. The sensor should be clipped onto the front, outside of close fitting underwear. If the sensor is not placed correctly, it may delay the sensor’s detection of moisture.

8. How do I improve the chances that my child will awaken when the alarm sounds?

Make sure you place the alarm box high up on the shoulder area of your child’s pajama top so that it is not muffled by blankets and is close to his/her ear. Parental help may be required at the early stages of treatment as most children (even the ones who do not wet) are deep sleepers.

9. How long will the alarm sound after it has been activated?

The Malem alarm will continue to sound until you or your child turns it off by lifting the sensor lever and pressing the reset button on the alarm box.

10. What battery type should I use to replace my old Malem batteries?

The standard Malem alarm (red or yellow) takes 3 Eveready A76 batteries. The Malem Ultimate alarm takes 2 AAA batteries. Consult the instruction manual or bedwettingstore.com for battery details on other Malem products.

11. How long do the batteries last?

The batteries in the audible Malem alarm will last for approximately 1 hour of playing time. The batteries in the Malem Ultimate alarm will last for about 10 hours of playing time. Playing time indicates the amount of time that the alarm is actually sounding. Drain on the batteries when the alarm is not sounding is minimal.

12. Where can I find replacement batteries?

Replacement batteries for the Malem alarms can generally be found at any super store, or at a technology store such as a Radio Shack. Replacement Eveready A76 batteries for the standard Malem alarm can also be purchased directly from the Bedwetting Store if you have trouble finding them elsewhere.

13. How do I replace the batteries in my Malem Alarm?

First, remove the battery cover. If you have difficulty getting the cover off, try using a flat head screw driver to pry it open by twisting the screw driver in the slot. Remove the old batteries from the compartment, using the red ribbon to assist you in pulling the batteries out. Make sure contacts are clean and free from deposits or rust and that batteries are making good contact (not loose). Following the directions for polarity on the battery cover and/or inside the compartment, place the new batteries in the unit. Click the battery cover back into place.

14. How do I stop the alarm from sounding?

Turning the alarm off is a two-step process. First, lift the lever on the sensor to remove the sensor from the underwear. Second, press the reset button on the side of the alarm box to turn the sound off.

15. How do I clean my Easy-Clip sensor?

Your Easy-Clip sensor should be cleaned every 3-4 days. It is important to clean this sensor regularly to ensure the proper functioning of the alarm, as urine build-up on the sensor will cause the alarm to act erratically. To clean the Easy-Clip sensor, use warm water, a mild soap, and an old toothbrush. Remove the sensor from the alarm box and scrub the sensor with the toothbrush and soapy water, making sure that you scrub the metal jaws thoroughly to remove any urine residue that may have built up on the inside of the sensor. After cleaning, rinse with water and shake or air dry. This should be done during the day when the alarm is not in use.

16. How do I clean my Malem Standard sensor?

Disconnect the Standard sensor from your alarm box. Using warm water and a mild soap, scrub both sides of the sensor head (the part that goes into the underwear). Wipe dry. This sensor should be cleaned fairly regularly, approximately once a week, to ensure the proper functioning of the alarm unit.

17. How do I clean my Malem Bed Mat sensor?

Disconnect your mat sensor from your alarm box. Wash the top of the mat with a mild soap and warm water mixture. You can use a soapy towel to wash it clean. The mat should be cleaned fairly regularly (approximately once a week) to ensure the proper functioning of the alarm unit.

18. What is the warranty on the Malem alarms?

The manufacturer’s warranty covers defects in the alarm box for 1 year from the date of purchase. The Bedwetting Store also provides a 90 day warranty on the sensor. These warranties do NOT cover malfunctioning due to flooding (urine or water damage in the alarm box), kinking/bending of the sensor cord, batteries, or any other improper use or physical damage of the alarm box or sensor. Warranty service is handled directly by the manufacturer, Potty MD. For warranty service, contact us by phone at 800.214.9605 or 301.774.1495, or FAX 301.774.7982.

19. I just got my alarm and every time I plug in the sensor, the alarm goes off and I can’t get it to stop. What does this mean?

If your alarm is sounding when you plug in your sensor, this probably means that the sensor lever is down and the metal sensing jaws within the sensor are touching and completing the circuit to set the alarm off. To prevent this from happening, make sure that the sensor lever is UP (the sensor is open) when you plug the sensor into the alarm box.

20. My alarm is making a very weak alarm sound. What does this mean?

This generally indicates that your batteries are weak and need to be replaced. Replacing the batteries should strengthen the alarm sound.

21. My alarm stops sounding when I open the sensor jaws without pressing the alarm reset button. What does this mean?

This generally indicates that your batteries are weak and need to be replaced. The alarm should continue to sound until the reset button is pressed.

22. After my child wets, I cannot get the Malem alarm to turn off. Does this mean my alarm is defective?

No, this may occur during the first few weeks of training, before your child has learned how to stop the flow of urine when the alarm sounds. When the sensor gets saturated, it can be difficult to turn off because it continues to sense the moisture stuck in the back of the sensor even after you remove it from the underwear. To turn the alarm off if this happens, simply disconnect the sensor from the alarm box, then press the reset button. After it is disconnected, you can rinse then dry the sensor thoroughly before reconnecting it. This problem may also occur if you improperly attached the sensor to the inside of the underwear - instead of the outside where it should be attached.

23. After my child wets, I cannot reattach the alarm to dry underwear without the alarm sounding again. Why does this happen?

When this happens, it just means that the sensor is still wet on the inside and needs to be more thoroughly dried. To dry your sensor, first rinse with water to remove any urine, shake to remove any large drops of moisture, and pat dry with a towel/paper towel, etc. You can also blow on the sensor with a hair dryer for 10-15 seconds to ensure that it is completely dry before reattaching it.

24. My Malem alarm is acting erratically, going off when it is dry or not sounding when wet. What does this mean?

The most common cause of erratic behavior is a dirty sensor. Often, if a sensor is not properly cleaned, urine residue can build up on the sensor jaws, causing the alarm to incorrectly sense moisture or, alternatively, become less sensitive to moisture. To rectify this problem, clean your sensor thoroughly with warm, soapy water and an old toothbrush. If your alarm continues to act erratically, try changing the batteries, make sure battery contacts are clean and that batteries are making good contact (not loose). Make sure the sensor is clipped to the outside of CLOSE FITTING underwear, and check to make sure the alarm box has not sustained any water damage.

25. I just started using my Malem alarm again after storing it for several months, and now it isn’t working. How can I fix it?

First, put new batteries in the alarm unit. Second, clean the sensor (see above for cleaning instructions). It is important to clean the sensor after storing the unit for an extended period of time, as any urine residue that was not removed before storing the unit will cause the alarm to act erratically.

26. Can the Malem alarm BOX get wet?

No. The alarm box contains the unit’s batteries and electronics. Flooding of the alarm box will result in malfunctioning. To prevent the alarm box from getting wet, make sure your child wears it on the shoulder area of his pajamas rather than down on the waistband.

27. I have the Malem Ultimate with sound and vibration. How do I change the setting so that the alarm only sounds?

To change the sound/vibration setting, open the battery compartment. On the inside of the compartment, next to the inner battery, there is a switch with the numbers 1, 2, and 3 below it. Move the switch up to position 1 for Sound ONLY, to the middle for position 2 for Sound and Vibration together, and down to position 3 for Vibration ONLY. **Note: we do not recommend using vibration only, as most children will not awaken to vibration alone.

28. I have the Yellow Malem or the Gold Malem Ultimate alarm. Can I choose which one of the 8 sounds I want it to play?

No, these alarms do not allow you to select which sound you would like to hear. Rather, they cycle through the eight tones programmed into the unit so that each time the alarm sounds, it will switch over to the next sound to prevent “auditory accommodation”.

29. I have the Selectable Malem Ultimate alarm. How do I choose one of the 8 sounds?

Your Selectable alarm can be set to any of the 8 sounds you choose, so that it plays that sound each time it goes off. To choose just one of the sounds, first switch the “sound” switch on the top of the alarm box from ‘8’ to ‘1’. Then open the battery compartment, and using the selector tool included inside the compartment, slide one of the 8 white selector switches to the ON (up) position. You may need to remove the batteries to get access to the switches. Change the sound you have selected by moving a different switch into the ON position (and pushing the others into the OFF position). To go back to 8 sounds, move the “sound” switch on the top of the alarm box back to ‘8’. Then slide the first white selector switch inside the battery compartment into the ON position. All other selector switches must be in the OFF position.

30. How do I test my alarm box to make sure that it is working properly?

To test the alarm box by itself (without the sensor); remove the sensor from the alarm box. Using something with a metal tip (i.e. a pen, paper clip, scissors, screw driver, knife), touch the two metal prongs inside the opening on the bottom of the alarm box where the sensor was plugged in (make sure that you touch both prongs at the same time). The alarm box should sound when you do this. To turn it off, press the reset button on the side of the box. Your alarm box is working properly if it starts sounding when you touch the prongs with your metal object AND if it continues to sound until you press the reset button.

31. My child does not wake up when his alarm goes off. Does this mean the alarm won’t work for him?

Many children who wet the bed are such deep sleepers that they cannot respond to an alarm on their own at first. This does not mean that they will be unsuccessful with the alarm. It is important that if your child does not hear the alarm on her own, that you help her wake up when the alarm goes off. Your child will gradually learn to awaken on their own. By the way, even children who do not wet are deep sleepers.