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Olympus PT-EP13 Underwater Housing issues and cleaning

Olympus PT-EP13 Underwater Housing Housing cleaning Housing flood

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#1 Divingmama

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Posted 13 June 2019 - 11:21 AM

I have an Olympus PT-EP13 Underwater Housing for the Olympus OMD EM5 Mark II camera, and the housing has flooded 3 times. The first time I thought it was the Zen wide angle port, and put the stock port back on. Soaked the housing in water and dried the springs, buttons, etc. well. All good for 6 months, then another major housing flood. Soaked and dried again, this time taking off the tiny screws that hold the port glass and cleaning sand off the 2 glass O rings. All good for a couple dives, then small amounts of water intrusion while diving around 80 feet. Took the housing down without the camera after soaking and drying again- no water intrusion. Took it down again without the camera, and there was water intrusion when pushing the buttons. At this point, I don't trust the housing any longer. Olympus already doesn't make the housing any longer and no store carries it. Does anyone have any suggestions? I really don't want to buy another camera and housing set up, and am severely bummed. 

 

Thanks,

Divingmama



#2 Architeuthis

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Posted 13 June 2019 - 12:01 PM

Hi Divingmama,

 

This sounds horrible. What happened to the cameras and lenses?

 

My wife had a very similar PT-10 housing for the EPL-5. She also flooded it totally after approx. 2 years resulting in total damage to camera and lens (housing was o.k.). In her case it was improper assembly (O-ring was not correctly in place), because she assembled in very low light condition for a night dive...

 

I had EM5-II at this time in Nauticam NA-EM5II housing. The flooding was a good reason to give her my camera + housing and upgrade to EM1II. I bought both Nauticam housings second hand for approx. 1000$ each.

 

If I were you, I would look for second hand Nauticam housing for the EM5II (if still working). Not only is the vacuum system a very good insurance against flooding, also the Nauticam system is compatible and upgradable - Olympus has already three different types of port connections for their housings .So in the midterm it is not only better but also cheaper (money for ruined cameras not even included)...

 

Wolfgang


Edited by Architeuthis, 13 June 2019 - 12:12 PM.


#3 ChrisRoss

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Posted 13 June 2019 - 05:46 PM

If the buttons are leaking you will probably find the housing is beyond repair, these types of housing are not made with servicing of o rings on the buttons in mind.  A suggested look in the classifieds for a second hand Nauticam housing - I had one and it was excellent - now upgraded to EM-1 MkII.  In the way of new housings you could purchase a Nauticam $US1450, Isotta $US1200 or an ikelite $US1049 .  You would probably need to buy new ports which of course adds to the expense, but the security of the vacuum system makes it worthwhile in my view.  Getting a second hand Olympus housing could see you in the exact same position in a year or two.

 

On the question of leaking buttons, this can be caused by salt crystals if you don't soak the housing and work all the buttons after each dive.



#4 Divingmama

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Posted 14 June 2019 - 12:51 PM

Thanks to both of you for your thoughts. Luckily the camera has so far survived the flooding. Amazing, but I worry about further flooding. I'll look into the Nauticam housing. Not happy with Olympus at this point. How do you both like the EM1 Mark II?

 

Aloha,

Divingmama



#5 ChrisRoss

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Posted 14 June 2019 - 07:44 PM

The EM-1 MkII is excellent - great AF, significantly better than the EM-5 MkII.  C-AF plus tracking actually works well and is my default AF option underwater for both wide and macro.  Sensor wise you have a few more MP but performance is not a huge leap above the EM-5 II, certainly noticeable but not a big step forward.



#6 Architeuthis

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Posted 14 June 2019 - 08:29 PM

Similar impressions as Chris: AF better and IQ a little better, but not a hallmark-improvement. I would not have upgraded unless the flooding of my wife, but now I am happy...

=> If on budget, stay with EM5II or go for used EM1 with housing in case you switch to Nauticam. You have time to acquire ports and lenses and in case some day Olympus or Panasonic come out with something substantially better, you just upgrade camera body and housing...

 

Wolfgang



#7 taydahay

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Posted 02 July 2019 - 03:06 PM

You may try soaking it for a long time (2-4 hrs) then pushing all of the buttons & levers and spinning the knobs about 20 times.  Repeat it all again after you change the water. 

Sometimes salt crystals are tough to dissolve/dislodge.



#8 Wapiti

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Posted 02 July 2019 - 07:30 PM

After the long soak mentioned by taydahay, try lubing everything according to the advice on this link from Reef Wreck and Critter:

http://www.reefwreck...aintenance.html

..I do this once or twice a year, and I'm sure it contributes to the good luck I've had with Olympus housings.  



#9 Divingmama

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Posted 03 July 2019 - 09:34 AM

Wow, thanks to all who have replied. The only thing I haven't done before is use the Silicone lubricant. It doesn't get into the housing I take it? Olympus suddenly has the housing available again, even though they said they wouldn't, and are offering a new one for $200 less, so I may go for it. They say mine is beyond repair. My first Olympus housing was still good after 6 years (a PT EP01) when I upgraded my camera/housing. The PT EP13- not so lucky. Hope to have better luck with your suggestions, since a Nauticam is 3 times the price.

All the best to you.

diving mama







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