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Bay Area Scuba Lovers Message Board Gear and Equipment Forum › How do you all clean your gear?

How do you all clean your gear?

user 4520706
Dublin, CA
Post #: 1
Okay, this may be a lame question, but I need to know. I've been diving for 20+ years, and I've noticed that over the years I've made a bigger and bigger stinkin' production out of cleaning my gear afterward. It's gotten to the point that I often pass up on single-day dives because I don't want to have to clean all the gear afterward.

So...can others share how they do it? I'll stick to my routine after big trips, but what's your routince after a quick day in Monterey?


P.S. One of these days I'll join you - this has just been a crazy year of travel for me.
A former member
Post #: 2
The game of scuba-toys involves a lot of clean up time.

For me, the day after the dive is when I do most of the clean up. That is also one reason I prefer to dive on Saturdays so that I can clean everything up on Sundays.

The first thing I normally clean up is my suit. Whether I take it with me into the shower the evening I return from diving, or else the following morning, it is often the first thing to get rinsed. Everything else is second.

The gloves, hood, sox, and undies (thermals for drysuit) can go into the washer with a gentle setting and half of the normal detergent. The sox and thermals can also be dried with the dryer's gentle heat setting. The gloves and hood I then hang on a 4-pronged hanger that I got at the scuba store.

A tub of water is great for tossing everything else into, including B/C (or BPW), weight belt, regs, lights, compass and computers, knife, SMB and small reel, masks, fins, and snorkel. After it soaks about an hour, pull the plug, let the water drain, then take everything out and shake it off.

If your wetsuit starts to smell, you can wash it in washer with a gentle setting and half the normal detergent.

If your drysuit starts to smell, soak it in the tub in warm water with half a cup of detergent, then drain and rinse, and hang up and rinse some more. I use a shower hose to rinse my suit completely, every time I go diving.

You should join us!

We have a great group of active divers.
user 8266134
Santa Clara, CA
Post #: 1
I usually do an initial rinse at the dive site, if facilities are available (like BW and Lobos). Like Karl, I typically put off rinsing my gear till the day after. No need to wreck post-dive bliss with a bunch of chores.

I have a removable shower head, which makes it very easy to rinse gear fairly quickly- most everything just needs a quick rinse. My neoprene hood, wing, and lift bag take the most time, but I just work through it methodically. I remove my BP/W from my tanks, and start with the tanks/regs in the shower (I leave the regs on and pressurized, just in case). Fins, lights, weights, BP follow. After that, I rinse my gators, hood, lift bag (I rinse out the dump valve just for kicks), and wing ( I work this pretty throughly, utilizing both dump systems. Finally, I rinse my drysuit.

After all that, I wash me!

Most of my gear drapes over the shower wall, or goes on top of my plastic scuba bin.

I don't know how water consumption compares to filling a tub. My guess is that it's pretty close to a wash. This works better for me though, because I don't have to worry about getting wet- I already am.

One final note- the water isn't cold, but I go about as low as I'm comfortable. Logical or not, I'm averse rinsing my gear in hot water.
David D.
Clifton Park, NY
Post #: 6
...filling a tub....close to a wash...

Nice pun.

Here is what I have been taught:
- Dunk computers and mask several times quickly in clear water soon after diving.
- Rinse the regulator soon being careful with the first stage because the caps we use are imperfect.
- Give the buoyancy compensator setup a quick dunk to knock the salt water out of the creases.
- Dunk the weight system once, dunk the fins once.
- Rinse the thermal protection suit because dried salt crystals are hard and will deteriorate the fabric.
- Hang it all up or spread it out as much as possible until it can be hung up.
- Let it dry hanging before putting it away.

It is not how long we have been diving the days or trip we are ending, it is how long the diving rig will be put away. Be more meticulous with the rinsing if the gear will be away for more than two weeks. Computers, regulators, and mask are life support equipment deserving of our care and attention.
A former member
Post #: 2
I read the previous posts on this subject, and none seem to address this problem:
I just got through rinsing all my gear from Sunday's dive, and my booties stink like a slightly less concentrated version of the sea lion smell when you get near a herd of them. I'm thinking bacterial. (My feet don't seem to have any related issues, though.) So, are there any anti-bacterial (or even regular) soaps that would be appropriate?
rachel the w.
Santa Clara, CA
Post #: 71
Well, firstly, I would never put my neoprenenon the washer. A tub washer perhaps butnever one with wings. That's just my personal preference. Secondly, always rinse out the inside of your bcd as well as the outside to keep salt crystals froom forming. Always rinse everything immediately with fresh water even if you won't get to it for another day and then let it soak if you leave it that long. Sink the stink or other enzymatic cleaners are available to help deoderize your gear. I go by the triple rinse rule: once to get the sand off and wet the salt, once to remove the salt and once to deoderize in the cleanest water possible.
user 10177636
Mountain View, CA
Post #: 1
Regarding to stinky neoprene, whether it is wetsuit, boots, gloves .... try using "sink the stink". They are available in many dive shops. I got my from Diver Dans in Santa Clara. Just following the instruction on the bottle, you only need to use a little, like 1oz or so, it really works.
San Francisco, CA
Post #: 1
I use Pine Sol to kill off the wetsuit smell. It's a heck of a lot cheaper than "Sink the Stink." I got that trick off a instructor who has 20-some odd wetsuits he lends out to students...
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