Earlier this week we paid attention to the advantages of drysuits and answered some frequently asked questions that we get in our Scuba Store and from our online customers. In this blog we answer the final and most important question, which is: What can go wrong with drysuit diving?
First of all, drysuit diving is as safe as wetsuit diving, but there are just a few things that you have to look out for, if you have only dived in a wetsuit before.
Here’s a few things to pay attention to:
1. DRYSUIT SEALS
The main thing with drysuits is that they have to seal perfectly in the right places, namely your neck, and wrists.
Drysuits have seals made from neoprene or Latex. These seals should fully prevent the water from entering your drysuit at all times. The disadvantage if these tight seals is that they can tear when you are fitting your drysuit, especially when the fabric comes in contact with your fingernails.
If you have a drysuit with a torn seal, replace it or get it fixed, because you can’t go diving with it.
The neck seal should not let any water in either, but can’t be too tight at the same time. You don’t want your blood flow to slow down or even blocked. Make sure you don’t have any hair tucked in between the neck seal and your neck, as this will let the water seep through. Fold the neck seals inward to create an airlock.
The valves on your dry suit will act in almost the same way as the valves on your BCD and the two low pressure hoses of your regulator will go to the BCD as well as the drysuit for you to be able to use both. Be aware that you will need to press longer to get the air to flow in your drysuit to surround your whole body. Short burst as with a BCD won’t do the job.
When you go deeper, the air in your drysuits is compressed more. To compensate for this you will need to add air to your drysuit. When you get closer to the surface, this air needs to be expelled again, just like with a BCD.
Air valves let air in (inlet valve) and out (outlet valve) of the dry suit.
1. The inlet valve is located on your chest. Attach it to the low pressure hose coming from the 1st stage of your regulator. Push the button of the valve to let air into the dry suit.
2. The outlet valve is situated on your shoulder. Outlet valves can automatically let air out, if you set it up that way, or otherwise have to be pressed. If you are inexperienced, turn the valve to the manual (closed) setting by moving it clockwise all the way to the end. To have it on automatic release, turn it in the opposite way. To let air out of the valve, your feet have to be lower than your body, so get into a (slightly) upright position to be able to release the air.
Please be aware that flipping over feet up in a drysuit is possible when the upper body is lower than the legs and the air gets into the boots of the drysuit. If this happens, you can’t release air and you could end up ascending too quickly. In that case flare out to slow your ascend and kick your legs hard to get your feet below your shoulders again. It is best to undergo a Drysuit Specialty Course to practice what to do when this happens!*
3. DRYSUIT ZIPPERS
Whether you chose a drysuit with a front or back zipper, this is a fragile part of the drysuit and will have to be handled with care and maintained regularly by treating it with wax. Also make sure the protector flap of the zipper or other neoprene parts don’t get caught up in the zipper when you close it, as it can damage the zipper’s teeth and when that happens, it won’t close or seal properly anymore.
When ready for your dive, make sure your diving buddy does the final little tug for you on your back zipper, to ensure it is closed properly.
Check out our range of drysuits for sale online!
Did you know Adreno has the biggest range of drysuit brands in the world? We’ve just stocked up on and our range includes the best brands on the market, such as Tusa, Apollo, WaterProof, Pinnacle, Beuchat, and Hollis.
Come to our big Scuba Diving warehouse in Woolloongabba, visit our Online Scuba Diving Megastore, or call us on 07 3895119 for advice.
With a range of quality drysuits from just under $1000 to about $1800, in small to large sizes and for men and women, you can certainly find what you need!
*WIN A FREE DRYSUIT COURSE
Adreno has teamed up with Professional Dive Services to give away a free specialty course to the winner of our Drysuit Draw. The lucky winner will picked out of a pool of people who have bought a drysuit from Adreno from today until the 13th of July 2012.
What is included?
The free course is scheduled on the 21st and 22nd of July 2012 in Brisbane and surroundings, including free transport from our Adreno store and the use of our air tanks and weight belts. The first day you will be reviewing the theory from the PADI instruction manual and do a guided drysuit dive in the pool. On the second day you will be diving twice in open water with your instructor John Gransbury.
If you pass the theory and skills reviews, you will receive a PADI Certificate for Drysuit Diving.
On July 16 John drew the winner out of all the purchasers of dry suits at Adreno in the past 2 months: