I've never really had a problem with any of my suits except for my new xcell drylock 4/3. It seems they had a problem in their production process because some of the exterior lock-stitching is unraveling... like their machine wasn't doing the lock properly or something. No ill effects yet, but I'm keeping an eye on it, I plan on sending it back to them this spring in hopes they will have it fixed and/or replaced by the time I need it this coming winter.
I have also noticed it looking a little funny around my left elbow--probably from putting direct pressure on it while driving my car with my left elbow on my arm rest.
How do you take your suits off? Are you stepping all over it and pulling it like crazy? Are you changing in a glass and syringe filled parking lot?
How often do you surf? Do you take care of them? Rinse them after every sesh? How do you dry them? Do you hang them from the ass-seams on a sharp hook or something? Sounds like user-error rather than a manufacturing issue...especially if it's across brands.
I've had an excel drylock 3/2 and a patagonia r4 for two years now and expect both to last at least another 2-3, probably more for the patagonia, but I take really good care of my suits.
This is what I was wondering myself. Take good care of the suit and it will last you a while, even if you surf very often.
Na it's Ripcurl's Piss Off shampoo specifically for wetsuits. Pretty much any mild soap will do. It makes a huge difference with the smell and is a must when repairing a suit.
Gotcha, thought maybe you were using Pert Plus or Mane 'n Tail or something. Have you ever gone in a hot tub or pool with it on? Or have you ever put them in the dryer? Left them in the car for long periods of time in the hot sun?
I use Dr. Bronner's Tea Tree & Hemp castile soap diluted to 3/4 water 1/4 soap for pretty much everything: Body, face, wetsuit, tent, down-filled things like sleeping bags and jackets, wool, etc... Hell, I even brush my teeth with it when camping because I always forget toothpaste.
You know, they don't call it "Magic Soap" for nothing. Plus the bottles are good for some interesting (crazy) reading while sitting on the throne.