The Best Scuba Diving Gear

Scuba Cylinders: Care Tips & When to Take Them for Visual Inspection

Last Updated on November 23, 2021 by Dan

Do you know how to care for your diving cylinders properly?

Diving cylinders are the lifeblood of every scuba diver. They supply air to breathe underwater, and without them, we couldn’t dive at all! But these tanks require special care to keep them working correctly. This post will provide you with some tips on how to take care of your diving cylinders so they’ll last for many years into the future!

Properly caring for your diving cylinder is a must if you want it to last a long time. If not managed correctly, it could lead to leaks or, even worse, – an explosion that could injure yourself or others around you! So follow this guide closely and ensure that your tank stays safe and sound when out on dives.

How to Move Dive Cylinders Safely

Diving cylinders can be cumbersome and difficult to move. When moving or transporting scuba diving cylinders, the proper protocol should always be followed for safety purposes.

What Not To Do With Your Diving Cylinders: 

Don’t Use A Spare Air Source To Blow Off Debris

It’s a common scuba diving mistake to use your scuba tank as an air compressor. This is very dangerous and puts the cylinder at risk of explosion! You should never “air up” another diver or carry out any other kind of work on the scuba tank. Only scuba professionals should be allowed to do this work.

Don’t Leave Your Dive Cylinder In The Sun Unattended For Hours At A Time.

It’s always a good idea to keep your diving cylinders in the shade, covered up and out of direct sunlight for long periods. This includes parking lots or other places where scuba tanks may be exposed to sunlight. Some scuba divers have been known to leave their scuba cylinders in the sun for hours at a time, and this is not good practice. Always keep them out of direct sunlight when possible!

Don’t Leave Your Dive Cylinder Unattended While In Use Underwater.

It’s scuba diving’s best practice to keep your scuba tank in sight at all times when it is being used underwater. This includes any time you are using the scuba cylinder, even if only for a short amount of time. Don’t leave them unattended while they’re still supplying air! If something were to happen and cause the scuba cylinder malfunction, you could be in danger.

Proper Care for Your Dive Gear

Diving cylinders must receive proper scuba diving care to remain functional and safe. Without this, scuba equipment will not work properly when needed most! The following are some practices that should always be followed when caring for scuba gear, including scuba tanks.

Always Inspect Your Diving Cylinders For Leaks Or Damage

This is a critical scuba diving practice and one that should never be skipped. It only takes a couple of minutes to check over your scuba tank for any leaks or damage – it could save you from a dangerous accident!

The Law Regarding Diving Cylinder Inspections

The scuba cylinder is one of the most important pieces of equipment that a diver needs to have. It is also one of the least understood when it comes to safety. The US Federal Law states that all cylinders must be visually inspected every 12 months by a qualified service technician. This blog post will discuss what you should do if your dive center isn’t available for inspection, and how often this inspection should take place.

It’s a question that most scuba divers will ask themselves at some point: when should I take my scuba cylinder to be visually inspected? The answer is, of course, “it depends.” If you are diving for recreational purposes and only dive once or twice every few months, then it might not be necessary. But if you’re diving more than that, or if you have any doubts about the safety of your equipment due to past incidents or other factors, then an inspection may be in order.

A qualified service technician must be visually inspecting your scuba cylinders every 12 months. If you are in the process of moving to a new location or have just moved and need an inspection, make sure that your dive center is aware so they can schedule it for you as soon as possible. When going through this process with a new dive company, it is helpful to provide them with your dive log or copies of the inspection paperwork that you have received from other locations.

The average lifespan for a scuba cylinder is about 12 years, though it can vary depending on how much and what kind of diving. If you are in doubt as to whether or not an inspection might be necessary for your cylinder, you should contact your dive center or a qualified service technician to be sure.

Tips For Diving Cylinder Inspections

A qualified service technician must inspect the scuba cylinder every 12 months (by law). If you are in process of moving, it is helpful for them to schedule the inspection as soon as possible which will take place at the new location.

The average lifespan of a cylinder ranges from 11 years if dived often and up to 15 years if rarely used and stored well. You might need an inspection even if not in doubt about whether it’s necessary – so better be safe than sorry!

When asking questions about when they can come out again next year, make sure that your company knows what date range would work best with their schedules; because this may affect what you will need to do when it comes time for your next inspection.

Please also note: if there are any damaged spots on the cylinders’ valves, they will need to undergo a replacement procedure which involves removing them from the tanks since access cannot be gained while still attached – including all emergency ports as well! This is routine maintenance particular cylinder valve replacements; but don’t forget about checking up on these during the first visual inspection.

Diving cylinders are a necessity for any scuba diver. They provide the gas needed to breathe underwater and can be found in different sizes depending on the requirements of the dive. Divers need to take care of their diving equipment as it is an investment that will last them a long time if they treat it appropriately. This blog post will teach you how to clean your diving cylinder, what not to do with your diving cylinder, and some tips for taking care of your other scuba gear too! 

Clean Your Dive Cylinders Regularly

Before every scuba dive, it is good practice to clean your scuba diving cylinders. This will help you spot any leaks or damage as well as keep them working properly for many years into the future!

Drain & Flush Your Dive Cylinders Before Storage

A simple step that can prolong the life of a scuba tank is to drain and flush it before storage. This will help prevent corrosion from forming on the scuba cylinder, which can lead to leaks or other damage that could be hazardous during a scuba dive!

Keep Your Scuba Cylinders In A Cool Place Out Of Direct Sunlight

Keeping your scuba cylinders in a cool place is always scuba diving’s best practice. This includes storing them out of direct sunlight, as scuba tanks can become hot when filled with air and left in the sun!

Always Follow The Manufacturer’s Recommendations For Storage Or Transport

The scuba tank manufacturer will provide you with specific guidelines on how to properly care for your scuba cylinder. Be sure to follow these scuba diving trips!

Always Use The Right Type Of Oil Or Grease On Moving Parts To Ensure Proper Functioning

It is important that proper scuba tank maintenance be done on a regular basis. Not only will this help prolong the life of your scuba cylinder, but it’s also required by law in some scuba diving locations. This includes scuba cylinders used for underwater breathing scuba equipment!

Checklist for Scuba Cylinder Testing

When scuba cylinders are returned from rental, do a complete leak-test and visual inspection before storing them away for the next user.

  1. Test for any leaks or damage by completely filling the cylinder with water.
  2. Perform a hydrostatic test — press down on the top of your scuba tank until it is completely full – this will ensure that your scuba cylinder will hold pressure.
  3. Check the tank markings for any scuffs, dents, or cracks, and check all valves and valve components (O-rings) to ensure they are not damaged in any way. Replace or repair as required.
  4. Make sure there’s no rust on screws – corroded parts must be replaced immediately so scuba equipment doesn’t fail while you are scuba diving.
  5. You should always have the cylinder re-tested within the period specified. This is an annual procedure in the USA. 
  6. In general, always follow the manufacturer’s instructions for maintaining, servicing, inspecting, and handling cylinder attachments.

Servicing of Scuba Cylinders

Do not ignore damaged painted surfaces! Remove fine wire wool from the area and apply a room-temperature air-drying primer followed by a room temperature drying gloss paint. Paints that cure above ambient temperature should not be used. Manufacturers can provide additional details.

Use abrasive wheels, files, shot-blasting, or harsh chemicals to remove a damaged paint surface. This may result in a reduction in wall thickness, rendering the cylinder unfit for pressure storage.

If you’re going to use stainless steel fittings as a backpack clamp-on for bare aluminum cylinders, cover them with an appropriate material to insulate them from the aluminum.

Here are some tips on cleaning the exterior of aluminum scuba cylinders

In normal use, aluminum cylinders, particularly those with brushed finishes, can accumulate grime and scuffs that mar the finish. Cleaning and enhancing the appearance of aluminum can be achieved using a variety of commercial aluminum cleaners. As a result, you may experience a reduction in wall thickness and inherent strength if the product used does not explicitly recommend aluminum.

Cleaning can be done in many ways or a combination of methods:

  • A dishwashing liquid and water
  • Solution wipes
  • Scrubbing pads made from non-metallic materials

Avoid using solvent wipes or non-metallic scrubbing pads on painted or clear-coated cylinders! You should only use paint-compatible solvents.

In Conclusion

Now that you have a better understanding of what it takes to care for your diving cylinders, the next step is implementing these tips so they’ll last for many years. So keep these tips in mind to prolong the life of your diving cylinders. You’ll save money and reduce risks by keeping them maintained! With this guide, you’re sure to be able to take care of it like a pro! If you’re ready to get started on this process and need help with any parts of it from an expert – let us know!