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Equipment Storage and Care

Published on: 23rd November, 2016 | Diving Equipment
Photo credit: http://www.sulawesi-experience.com/news/diving-expensive-tips.html
Scuba gear is subjected to some of the harshest environments on earth such as seawater, which can speed up corrosion. Therefore, proper maintenance and storage is important to prolong the life of scuba equipment.

Saltwater is highly corrosive on most objects and scuba gear is no exception. Seawater left on equipment will form a residue of salt and calcify. Of particular concern is damage to smaller items such as O-rings that perform crucial sealing duties.

Immediately after a dive, all equipment that has been exposed to seawater should be immersed in fresh water and operated underwater.

Water must not enter the inner mechanism of the first stage of the regulator. Therefore, it is essential to use the regulator’s dust cover or leave the regulator attached to the tank while it is being rinsed.

Commercially available specialty drying racks are built specifically for scuba gear with hooks, bars, shelves and hangers for every piece of scuba clothing and hardware. However a dry towel on the floor and your clothes line will suffice.

It is recommended that wetsuits and scuba clothing are turned inside out and then dried in a shaded area. The ultra violet rays from direct sunlight can have a damaging effect on the rubber elements of wetsuits and other equipment.

Equipment should only be put into storage once dry, and the storage space should be dry and if possible aired (eg a cage).

It may be a good idea to occasionally rinse wetsuits if they haven't been used in a while to prevent them from drying out and cracking.

Scuba tanks should always be stored in dry places and upright, with at least 35bar of compressed air inside. This is to prevent moisture entering and corroding the interior of the tank.


Ashton East

OC and CCR trimix, stage cave, underwater photographer; NSW, QLD and UK Legal Counsel.