Camera Maintenance Tips

Proper care and maintenance is essential to keeping underwater photographic equipment in good condition. There are a number of ways to harm your equipment, including exposure to salt, minerals, sun, and dirt, improper storage, neglect, improper repair, and improper handling. Because photographic equipment is so sensitive, and was probably a considerable investment, be sure to always provide proper maintenance before, during, and after a dive.

O-Ring Maintenance

The most essential part of maintaining your camera system will be proper care of the O-rings, which seal camera channels from dust, dirt, debris, salt, and water.

  • Before every dive examine the O-rings for small nicks and cracks
  • Make sure that O-rings are lubricated so they will be elastic enough to form adequate seals
  • Do not over lubricate- overlubrication may attract dust and dirt that will disrupt the seal
  • A well properly greased O-ring looks moist and shiny
  • If there is any concern about sealing capability of an O-ring replace immediately

Before Every Dive:

  • Check all O-rings to ensure proper seals
  • Set up equipment in a clean well-lit area
  • Check that the housing is properly closed and sealed
  • Check all batteries, lights, etc.

During Your Dive:

  • Have your camera handed down to you once you are in the water as sudden impact from jumping in may cause damage
  • Once you are in the water check for escaping air bubbles which could indicate a leak
  • Check to make sure everything is working properly- trip the shutter to make sure the strobe fires
  • If you suspect something is wrong take the camera out of the water and immediately place it in fresh water bath

After Your Dive:

  • As soon as possible after a dive place your camera in a fresh water bath to eliminate your camera's biggest enemy- salt
  • Make sure to turn all knobs, etc. to make sure fresh water flows to all parts of the housing
  • Let the camera soak for at least 30 minutes to ensure there is no salt or minerals
  • Do not rinse the camera with a hose, which may cause salt and debris to be forced into crevices
  • Once the camera is clean, dry it on a clean towel with the back down so water flows away from the interior
  • Do not open housing until completely dry
  • Recheck all O-rings, and store in a cool, shaded place between dives



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