How to Tell If a Condom Broke

Written by elaine anderson
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How to Tell If a Condom Broke
Choosing the right-size condom can help avoid breakage in the first place. (David De Lossy/Photodisc/Getty Images)

It may be difficult to tell whether a condom has broken while you are engaging in sexual activity. In some instances, you might be able to feel a slight popping sensation during sex when a condom has broken. If you don't physically feel something but nonetheless suspect that something went amiss, you can inspect the condom afterward. It's important to ensure the integrity of your condom to protect you and your partner from sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and unplanned pregnancy.

Condoms come in three main sizes: snug, standard and larger. Since condom size can be important to avoiding breakage, if your or your partner's penis size falls above or below the average of five to seven inches with a four and a half to five inch circumference, then you may need to try either the larger or snug sized condoms.

Skill level:


  1. 1

    Stop engaging in sexual activity immediately if you feel a popping sensation. Inspect the condom closely for any tears or holes.

  2. 2

    Hold the condom up near a light source to help make any points of damage more evident. Holes and rips can be very small and difficult to see, so light will help in spotting them.

  3. 3

    Fill the condom with water, if no holes are visible and your partner did not ejaculate. Check for any signs of leaking. If your partner did ejaculate, examine the condom closely for any signs of leaking semen.

Tips and warnings

  • Damage to condoms can occur if you open the package with scissors or any other sharp object, so carefully open the package to avoid accidentally puncturing any of the condoms.

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