Every diver needs a wetsuit – amateur or professional. It is a necessity because it is one piece of clothing that keeps them safe and warm underwater. Buying a wetsuit from a reputable brand is good; however, there are other things you need to consider. Some of these things include fitting and maintenance.
Finding a scuba diving wetsuit that fits may not be that difficult because all you need is accurate measurement. Easily, you can find something that fits without leaving spaces or flushes. On the other hand, you need to be more worried about its maintenance and care. Having a clean wetsuit does help tremendously – one of them is reducing how much you spend on getting new ones.
This article teaches how to clean a wetsuit and invest so much in its care so that you get to use it for as long as it takes.
How does a wetsuit work – Read here.
How Do You Clean a Wetsuit?
As soon as you are done scuba diving, you don’t just leave your wetsuit lying around because it can grow molds. However, what you do is take the necessary cleaning procedures to ensure cleanliness and safety. You must follow these procedures after every dive so that you wouldn’t have problems the next time you are going underwater.
Below are the 3 effective steps to clean your scuba wetsuit.
Step 1: Rinse Only With Fresh Water
When you are done scuba diving, you need to wash your wetsuit almost immediately. The moment you step out of the water, it becomes a breathing ground for molds and other microorganisms. Now, you might want to consider being selective with the type of water you use to rinse the suit – only use fresh water.
The environment you are coming from is saltwater, affecting the quality of the suit’s Neoprene material. For a countereffect, freshwater is perfect for getting rid of residues and salt buildup on the suit. It also helps to retain the suit’s flexibility.
Before you start to rinse, the way you take off the wetsuit is also important. It probably will feel sticky and clingy on you, but pulling it off doesn’t do the material any good. Instead, apply pressure over specific areas – broad ones, so that it slides off easily. Once it is off, you can proceed with rinsing.
Step 2: Dip Dry, and Fold
Like every other clothing material, a wetsuit gets wet after rinsing; however, using the conventional method of sun-drying or applying heat isn’t ideal. Heat reduces the quality of Neoprene, making it a bad choice for drying.
An alternative method that works is dip drying the suit to get rid of moisture completely. What you have to do is fold the suit over a padded hanger and leave it for a few days or weeks to dry completely.
It would be best if you let the suit’s interior dry first before the exterior. Once both sides are in good condition, you can proceed with storing.
Step 3: Use Good Storage
After the wetsuit is completely dry, the way you store it is also important. If you don’t store it in a good place; instead, you scrunch and stuff somewhere, the Neoprene material could get ruined.
Therefore, to retain the structure of the suit’s material, folding on a padded hanger is perfect. However, it would be best to make sure that the waist is folded so that the shoulders and neck don’t stretch.
If you can follow all these steps, there is no way you won’t have a clean, dry scuba suit against your next diving day.
How Do You Take Care of Your Scuba Suit?
In addition to knowing how to clean your scuba diving wetsuit, there is a list of dos and don’ts that will help in its maintenance.
Avoid Heat and Direct Sunlight
Wetsuits hate a couple of things; however, heat and direct sunlight are top on the list. The Neoprene material isn’t like most clothing materials around that can easily get dry on exposure to heat.
Thus, it means you shouldn’t consider using a washing machine or hot water to get it cleaned. Even if you leave a wetsuit in the trunk of your vehicle, the structure is affected.
While you are advised not to make your wetsuits come in contact with heat, you should also avoid squeezing. Most people feel the need to squeeze clothes or fabrics to get water out of them; however, that doesn’t work with Neoprene. Squeezing can affect a wetsuit’s flexibility and even cause it to tear.
Use Wetsuit Shampoo or Cleaner
Not everyone is comfortable with rinsing with only freshwater – there are cases where there are smells to remove. If that is the case, you should consider getting a wetsuit shampoo or cleaner to remove and prevent any smells and other residues or salt deposits. On no occasion should you use harsh chemicals or detergents to remove these materials from a wetsuit.
Lubricate the Zipper
Zippers are a part of wetsuits. They are the least paid attention to because most divers are only worried about getting the neoprene material clean and clear. However, not taking care of the zipper, which also comes in contact with saltwater, can lead to its corrosion. Therefore, it is advisable to lubricate the zipper with good sprays to prevent corrosion and abrasion.
Ironing is Not Advised
Since there is a mention of the wetsuit avoid the heat, it is crucial also to note that ironing wetsuits is not advised. Neoprene is soft and delicate, and the impact of the heat coming from an iron can destroy its quality and structure.
If you want to clean and take care of your wetsuits the best way, following the vital pieces of information ruled out above is consequential. Your wetsuits are part of what makes you a scuba diver – the better it is, the more experienced you look.