All too often I see divers treat their equipment as if it’s really not responsible for delivering air to them at depth. It’s interesting how some of them boast about the dollar amount on their equipment and then turn around and seemingly destroy their equipment. Not saying anyone is made of money, but seriously; when it’s your life underwater, you would think some would take special care of their equipment. But, all too often, I see divers completely disregard this simple ideal of diving. As a dive master I see regulators and BCDs come into the dive centre I work at that have had service skipped over several years, corrosion from salt water, and even a customer who said that his octo hadn’t worked in over six months but he dove with it anyways. Shocking I know, but completely true. Annual service of equipment is just as important as dive skills. Most regulators are recommended for yearly service. But beyond this annual service you should take an increase of personal care on all your equipment.
Regulators should be rinsed with clean freshwater after diving; even if you dove in freshwater. The mechanical parts inside are not corrosion resistant (regardless of what you local dive centre has told you), and washing after dives will help to keep corrosion down. This should done especially if you’re diving in salt water. If you dive in salt water regularly you might consider increasing your service to bi-annually rather than your annual schedule; whatever that may be, although I would recommend an annual service be every year. Regular diving in salt water increases greatly the risk of corrosion. Decreasing this risk through regular rinsing and servicing; it’s a sign of good risk management if you do. When you place your equipment down at the dive site, take care not to place the regulators in sand and mud as this can obstruct the exhaust, or cause failure to the regulator itself.
Your BCD should get the same treatment believe it or not. There are components within the BCD itself that can easily corrode. Again, take care where you place your BCD at the dive site; especially if you’re shore diving where dirt and sand and mud can really get into your equipment quite easily. This can cause failure underwater; which, let’s be honest, is the last place you want failure to occur.
Moral of the post is, keep your equipment clean and get regular servicing from a reputable dive centre with reputable credentials. It could mean the difference between a smooth dive and an equipment failure at depth.
GoScubaCandy.com Webmaster. Your World. Underwater.