Always rinse the BCD after each dive with fresh water, flushing both inside and out. Only rinse outside of BCD when outside of the US, most tap water contains some salt which is not good for the inside of the jacket.
Fresh water is all that is normally needed to clean your BCD, though you may use a BCD conditioner in the final rinse to inhibit the growth of mold or mildew and to keep the BCD fresh and odor-free.
If you are using your US Scuba purchased BCD in US Scuba's pool, you do NOT need to rinse it after use, since US Scuba's pool is bromine which does not harm your equipment.
But, cleaning is especially recommended immediately after use in a chlorinated pool, as chlorinated water will quickly break down rubbers and plastics. Most manufacturers also recommend regular an annual servicing consisting of cleaning, inspection and lubrication of specified parts. In fact, many manufacturers offer limited lifetime warranties that remain valid only if the BCD is serviced annually.
The best way to prevent the growth of harmful molds and bacteria is to use the BCD frequently in salt water. Salt water effectively inhibits the growth of fungus and molds, and most materials, a good excuse to go on a trip! However, once evaporated, salt water will leave salt crystals -- some large enough to act like pieces of glass and tear or rupture the bag. A good internal rinse using BCD Conditioner will eliminate this.
To clean BCD component parts, direct a stream of water into the mouthpiece of the oral inflator valve, and drain the water back thorough the mouthpiece. If your BCD so allows, remove the over pressure relief valve assembly and rinse all components. Because the over pressure valves are low-pressure valves, they have the potential of not completely reseating. It is important to run fresh water through the bladder after every dive and then inflate the unit with the valve positioned down so the water will flush the valve as the valve actuates.
To drain the water from the BCD, reinstall the over pressure relief valve, and orally inflate the vest. Turn the vest upside down so that the drain hose is at the lowest point. Depress the inflator button and squeeze the vest. The sudden rush of air should force the remaining water to exit from the interior of the vest through the inflator hose. Backs flush the auto inflator with clean fresh water by filling the BC (which has already been rinsed clean) and then flushing out the water though the mail quick disconnect fitting.
Buoyancy compensators should be stored partially inflated. For prolonged storage, a small amount of silicone lubricant may be applied to the rubber parts of the BCD, but do not spray silicone inside the bag itself or on to the oral or power inflator mouthpiece assemblies. Store the BCD with the hose on the downward side, so that residual moisture drains to the hose assembly. Then after a day or two, depress the inflator button to allow any residual water to drain. Store your BCD on a BC Hanger, not in your dive bag. This allows any moisture to dry and allows for easy and compact storage.
MANUFACTURERS RECOMMEND THAT ONCE A YEAR YOU HAVE YOUR BC serviced by your local dive store. this is highly recommended since mechanical components need to be properly maintained to function properly.
After diving rinse thoroughly with Wet Suit Shampoo, rinse with fresh water and hang to dry. Once dry keep suit away from direct sunlight to prevent damage. When possible, soak your suit in a large tub, using an ounce of wetsuit shampoo, giving it several fresh water rinses. It is recommended that you wash and dry your suit right side out to prevent creasing.
While washing, check for leaks or tears, especially around the seams, knees and the seat. Fill different parts of the wetsuit with water to create a balloon effect and mark any spots where the water leaks out. Repairs should be made only after the suit is completely dry. While rinsing, work the zippers and twist locks to insure that all salt or sand particles are rinsed free.
After rinsing the suit, it is best to hang it up and let it air dry completely. Use very wide hangers to prevent creasing the rubber or stretching the suit. After the suit is dry, lubricate metal wetsuit zippers with silicone or beeswax to prevent corrosion and to ensure smooth operation for future dives.
Make sure the suit is completely dry before storage, and always store it at a constant temperature away from electric motors, smog, heat and sunlight. Hang it on a specially designed wet suit hanger from US Scuba Center or use an extra-wide, smooth hanger. Never fold or stuff a wetsuit into a diving bag for storage. You may also store your wetsuit in a large plastic bag, such as a trash bag, sealed tightly to protect it from exposure to ozone, smog or gas fumes from your garage that would attack the rubber. Just ensure that it is perfectly dry first.
Wetsuits are susceptible to snags and tears from abrasive surfaces and sharp objects. Small tears and gouges can be easily repaired with a can of wetsuit cement, and large holes can be repaired with a neoprene patch. Commercial wetsuit cement easy to use and is available at US Scuba Center. When in doubt bring your suit in and we will help.
Regulator must be serviced by a trained technician at least once a year. If you use your regulator extensively, it should be serviced every six months or every 50 dives. This will entail bringing in your warranty in order to save money on parts and in some instances, labor (which is not included in the warranty). A competent inspection will usually reveal whether or not the regulator is in need of an overhaul or a simple cleaning or tune-up. No amount of washing or careful use can entirely prevent your regulator from becoming out of tune.
If your regulator was purchased and annually serviced by US Scuba Center, bring it in after every salt water trip and it will be cleaned as part of your purchase package.
The most important maintenance procedure you can perform on your regulator is a complete, fresh water rinse immediately or within a few hours of your last dive. Even if you don't have a chance to rinse off your other equipment right away, try to see that your regulator gets a fresh water rinse as soon as possible, regardless of whether you have been diving in salt or fresh water.
CAUTION - ATOMIC REGULATOR SECOND STAGES SHOULD NEVER BE RINSED WHEN NOT PRESSURIZED!
If allowed to remain inside your regulator, dried salt crystals and sand particles can damage the precision parts inside. the chlorine and acids in swimming pools, as well as the mineral and alkaline deposits present in fresh water lakes and rivers can also cause corrosion and damage to many regulator components.
IMPORTANT NOTE: ATOMIC REGULATOR SECOND STAGES SHOULD NOT BE RINSED - when you purchase a regulator from US Scuba Center, as long as it has been overhauled within the year, you bring your regulator in after a salt water trip and let us do the salt water clean up at no cost to you...... Another reason to purchase your life support equipment from US Scuba Center, as this service is complimentary.
Telephone: (248) 650-9500 FAX: (248) 650-9565
515 S. Rochester Road Rochester, MI. 48307
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Store Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday - 10:00am - 7:00pm
Saturday - 10:00am - 5:00pm CLOSED TUESDAYS AND SUNDAYS