Dive computers are meant to make your life underwater easier. Your dive computer care will determine how long your prized possession will last. If you simply toss it into a bag with all your gear in it your computer has a chance of breaking. Instead of this, you should have a special spot and case for your computer.
Getting into good habits will ensure that your dive computer will last as long as possible. Keep in mind that this is one of the most important parts of your dive gear. It can be a lifeline when you are under the water, so treat it with respect. You will want to ensure that this highly tuned piece of gear is working at its best at all times.
Getting your dive computer setup before you head for your next dive trip will save you a headache and get you in the water fast. There are a few things you’ll have to do when you first get it.
When you first take your watch out of the box you should charge it and turn it on. Don’t just assume that it works because it’s new. Companies have been known to send faulty watches. With your instruction manual beside you, get used the settings and how to navigate. The more time you spend getting to know the watch the less frustrated you’ll be when you’re under water.
You will more than likely be prompted to input things like your weight, and height. The computer will use this information to process everything from your dive stops to oxygen time left under the water. You can even set it to metric or imperial (feet or meters, Celsius vs Fahrenheit). Also, ensure that it is set for air or nitrox (most people will have this set to air). Last but not least, ensure that your dive stops are set to automatic. This will allow the computer to do all the work for you.
Once you’ve set it up try it on. Make sure you understand how to adjust the buckles while finding a comfortable fit. While it’s on your wrist act like you’re in a dive and try to quickly get through the settings.
The real maintenance for your watch comes after your dive is done. It is important to care for your dive watch after every single dive, just as you do with your other scuba gear.
As close to the end of your dive as possible you will want to give your computer a thorough rinsing. Whenever possible try not to let your computer to sit unwashed for very long. This can be done with some clean fresh water. With your fingers gently scrub off any salt, sand and debris.
When you are cleaning, be sure to pay close attention to the metal contacts on your computer. These will be the first to tarnish and corrode due to the saltwater. You can occasionally use a soft toothbrush and mild biodegradable soaps to wash away any build ups.
You will want to dry it off with a clean soft towel. This will help to remove any leftover salt or organic materials. Allow to air dry fully before storing. It is best to store your computer in a cool dry area that has ventilation but is not exposed to direct sunlight.