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domromer

How often to clean orings

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HI,

 

I clean and lubricate mine at each battery change.

as for the housing, I inspect it and clean it before every trip,  or at the end of the day when diving for multiple days.

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I clean them every time I break a seal.

I had Z240's for years.  Never used the non-optical connection so never opened it.

Using Z330 now and its the same for me.

Same for the camera housing I use.

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If you handle orings too much they will stretch out over time and fail.  I lightly lube the Inon rings before resealing but only occasionally remove them from their slots and clean.  

Edited by davehicks

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There's lot of at times contradictory advice on this thread and again I emphasise that the answer is it depends on a lot of variables including:

  • design of the o-ring closure is it a flat face sealing surface with no sliding or is it a screw on cap or a push in cap?
  • does the closure retain water?
  • how dirty is the water - is there stirred up grit
  • Are you shore diving and entering and exiting where there is swell to deal with and it is stirring up the water?

I have INONs and clean the o-ring at every battery change and I usually find some hairs and grit on them.  I always find big drops of water clinging to the o-ring which I feel I need to remove and the water is always behind the o-ring as well.  I've been diving these strobes for 5 year on the original o-rings.  The water that is retained is still salty even after a 2 hour soak! 

My Nauticam housing is a clamshell design and there are always drops of water on the o-ring and around the sealing surface of the housing side .  I clean and inspect the o-ring, the groove and the sealing surface every time it's opened and regularly find grit and hairs.  Still using the original o-ring after 3 years of diving.

My dive torches are INON, they do not retain water in the closure, there is never any water or debris on the o-rings, so they get removed maybe once a year.  and only inspected for debris at each battery change.

I can see how a flat face seal where the o-ring is not lubricated can stay in place for much longer if diving in cleaner waters particularly - just dry it off and give it a quick brush or blast with a blower bulb.  I get that o-rings stretch but my experience is that with careful handling they last for a great many dives and battery changes if cleaned at every opening.  This may vary depending upon the type of o-ring - silicone rubber may well last longer before giving a problem than regular black rubber.

My recommendation - start out cleaning them fully at each opening to see if your combination of housing design and diving environment gets water and/or dirt on the o-rings you need to deal with before closing them up again  then decide on cleaning frequency based upon your experience.  If you are worried about stretching your o-rings replace them every year or two - relatively cheap insurance.

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I do mine each time I change the batteries - most of the time! Sometimes I just skip it change batteries and go again. But no matter what I clean and add a dash of grease at the end of each day.

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Posted (edited)

I clean/inspect every time I change a battery or swap a memory card.  Try to do it in a dry/clean environment.  I prefer not to do this around the dive deck, but it's not always possible to take the gear back to myroom on some live-a-boards.  I use a small flashlight to look over the oring channel to make sure I didn't miss a spec of sand or hair.  I rotate through memory cards 1 card per day.  Minimizes the risk of loosing all photos in the event of a flood or memory card failure.  I also change out all orings 1x per year.

Knock-on-wood... No floods to date. (Sony RX100 M2, Nauticam NA-RX100, YS-D1)

Edited by Eric Straumins

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