As the local dive season comes to a close, we are sometimes left wondering how to care for and store our dive gear until we dive again. Hopefully these tips and reminders will help.
Absolutely everything should be fully cleaned and dried before storage, or you may have some surprises when you try to unpack them for that next dive adventure. It does not have to be stored in a heated area, but it does have to be stored dry and out of high humidity.
If you do store gear in an unheated area, remember to remove items such as cleaners and defog to prevent them from freezing. Be cautious of moving items while frozen. The soft silicone and rubber will become less pliable and even fragile when frozen.
Ensure the interior is clean and dry. Do not fully deflate the bladder, but leave a small amount of air inside to keep the interior air cell walls from getting stuck together. It is best to leave it hanging with ample space, doing up the sternum strap or looping the inflator through the opening of the hanger is best if you don’t have a BCD hanger with “hooks” on the ends.
It is best to store scuba tanks upright and at a reduced pressure. It is okay to store them in an unheated garage or shed, as long as they are kept away from street salt, sand and run-off.
If stored in the regulator bag tightly curled up, the hoses may retain a bit of ‘memory’ from that tight situation. As long as you are aware of this, it will not actually harm the hoses, and will loosen up after next use. Ensure that mouthpieces are not being crushed during storage.