A leaky mask can spoil a dive. It’s a real pain to have to spend most of your dive removing a mask instead of taking in the particular underwater surroundings. This can be particularly annoying for new divers and if your mask clearing skills aren’t up-to-par, a leak can even be a bit frightening.
Have a tendency go out and buy a new mask just because the one leaks
According to my friend Adrian, a long-time diveshop manager plus instructor, a lot of people buy more than one mask in their earlier stage of scuba diving because they believe the problem with leaks lies with the dive mask. But the real problem lies with The way the mask is being worn. His report serial mask buyer bought 4 masks in six months until she got a haircut (the reason was her long hair, caught under the skirt of the mask).
So once you’ve got a comfortable and well-fitting mask, there are things you can do to reduce the leaks problem.
Mask leak avoidance tips
Make sure the strap is not too tight.
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The instant reaction to a leak for many people would be that the strap is not tight enough. An overly tight mask will make the issue worse – and leave that will mark on your face that won’t disappear for three hours.
A neoprene Mask Strap Cover is really nice to get preventing hair tangles and pulls when you put on and remove the face mask – a must have for those with longer hair.
Cracks, rips and tears
Check for rips and tear within the mask skirt. This could be a source intended for leaks.
Take care of your mask. Wash your mask after diving, dry and store in a box or case to avoid damage.
DO NOT use a cheap snorkel mask for diving. They are not designed for diving cannot endure the pressure at depth. Constantly buy your scuba diving equipment from reliable dealers and shops.
The problem with hair
Hair in the mask is a very common cause of leaks. If you’re not wearing a hood, make sure you don’t have stray bits of hair in the mask. Connect back long hair and very clear hair away from your face when putting on your mask.
Long fringes/bangs may cause leaks. A French plait/braid is a sure way around this.
Facial hair is a big culprit. Many men are forced to choose between shaving their moustache to have a less leaky dive or keeping it plus tolerating a watery vision. Cutting the hair that makes contact with the face mask may work and is a less extreme solution.
For men who are determined to keep their facial hair, there are various remedies. Silicon gel/salve applied to the moustache prior to the dive is a common one. Prevent petroleum-based products like Vaseline as they can break down silicon.
There are two types of people when it comes to masks and purge valves — those who love it and those who hate it. The purge valve is a built-in feature that allows easier clearing/draining of the water from the mask. For fans, it makes clearing easier. For non-fans, the purge valve is just an additional unnecessary addition that could malfunction.
Personally, I’ve never owned a cover up with a purge valve and I don’t believe the old fashioned clearing method is so bad.
No such thing being a waterproof mask
I’m convinced you will never have a perfectly sealed mask (ofcourse not in my lifetime anyways). There will continually be small quantities of water entering the mask. With some experience, you will get used to it.