View Full Version : Several Questions for Scott...Or Anyone Else

08-14-2008, 16:06

2 things:

#1. Is there a home remedy for a sticky inflator hose button?


#2. On my AOW dives this weekend the bladder on my Ranger filled with a little bit of water making it difficult to empty all the air out, so I kept popping to the surface. Thank God my deep dive got canceled because of the rain. I didn't need to pop to the surface in the middle of that. Any ideas on what to do here?

And of course, thank you in advance for your help!

ScubaToys Larry
08-14-2008, 16:13
1) If an inflator gets sticky - it's normally from sand getting in it. You can rinse it off good, and check the valve. Once they get to where that doesn't do it, you can open them up and swap out the o-rings or schraeder valve - or just replace the end.

2) Can't really happen they way you explain. Air is lighter than water - so even if water is in the bladder, the water will be at the bottom and if you hold the inflator in the proper position - that would put the air higher - and it will come out no problem.

And water only gets in there if you hold the deflate button too long, and let water come back in the hose after letting air out.

So I'd say try to work on your technique for inflating and deflating, and work on your buoyancy with an instructor, as there is really no reason for "popping to the surface" except not having a handle on your buoyancy in the water.

08-14-2008, 16:14
#1. Is there a home remedy for a sticky inflator hose button?
My go-to home remedy for stuck buttons is whacking, and if that doesn't solve the problem, disassembly and a thorough cleaning and lube.

#2. On my AOW dives this weekend the bladder on my Ranger filled with a little bit of water making it difficult to empty all the air out, so I kept popping to the surface.

I don't understand how water in the bladder could cause that problem. Could you elaborate? I would think that, since the air will always rise to the highest point, you would be able to dump from the inflator regardless of whether or not there was water in there.

Could it perhaps be that your difficulty in dumping air is what caused the water to get in there, and not the other way around?

08-14-2008, 17:52
I just don't understand how I could possibly float with 35 pounds on. My buoyancy has been fine up to this point, with no pop ups. I've been working on it every time I hit the water, which has been a lot this summer. Most of my lake/pond/pool dives here are specifically to hone in on my buoyancy and I don't even bother to log them.

Anywho, the water in the bladder is probably as Larry explained it: holding the deflate button too long. I think that both Larry and Matt are dead on with the fact that water in the bladder shouldn't pose a problem as far as letting air out or deflating the BC. I think I might have everything looked at by my LDS. Maybe something's screwy...

I've gotta figure out those pop ups though before I go 70 ft. Then again, once you're at 70 ft you sink like a brick. That's still no excuse, though...

08-22-2008, 03:27
35 pounds - are you using a drysuit?

Lots of people have difficulty controlling buoyancy with a drysuit / BC. Very possible you're not getting enough air out of the suit before the dive, or are having difficulty venting throughout the dive.

I'd recommend on your next dives keeping a bare minimum of air in the drysuit, just enough to keep the squeeze from being uncomfortable. Also check your undergarments to make sure nothing is lofting up around the exhaust valve.

If I'm wrong and you're diving wet, no matter... keep in mind that the Ranger has a ton of lift, way more than you need. It'd be very easy to overdo it and cram a ton of air into that bad boy. As others have mentioned, learn to use your dump valves as effectively as possible. One of the easiest ways for new divers is to just switch to a vertical orientation when you need to vent air, which will force the air to the top of your bc. Then hold your inflator up high and hit the deflate button. All of the air should come out... you can hear and feel it, so you should know when to stop!

You'll find that your buoyancy improves over time, despite what type of suit you wear. I started with 36 pounds of weight in my drysuit, now I'm down to 22. I have friends that dive with 40 or so, one guy as much as 60. People tend to use excessive weight as a sort of "training wheels" to overcompensate for lack of good buoyancy control. You'll figure it out, it just takes practice!

Small amounts of weight do make a difference - I was 2 pounds heavy on my last dive and noticed it. I also notice a difference if I switch from my Flathead to my buddy's titanium Atomic regulator - about 1 pound too light =)


08-22-2008, 06:42
I've found that both my husband's Ranger and my Zena will hold a small amount of air in the top of the bladder if you don't roll slightly to the left when deflating. Definitely not enough to "pop to the surface" though.

08-22-2008, 18:01
As was mentioned above, body position is important in venting. Try assembling your rig at home just as you would for a dive, put it on and stand a little bit sideways in front of a mirror. You will probably notice that the hose passing under the velcro on the left shoulder becomes a low point in the system trapping a pretty good bubble in the bladder unless you really roll your left shoulder up. One solution that I have seen work is to velcro the LP hose but not the corrugated hose.
The sticky inflator valve could be contributing to the problem venting air. If you purchased from an LDS, bring it to them and let them fix it.
Atlantic Divers in Danvers, MA is a Zeagle dealer.