How to clean a mold disaster?

Discussion in 'General Scuba Equipment Discussions' started by ChristineG, Sep 4, 2007.

  1. ChristineG

    ChristineG Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Houston, Texas
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    After diving overseas late last year I packed all my gear in a storm case for travel and safe keeping. Unfortunatley, something must have retained water because I now have jungle mold growing on everything from my fins, through my BC, and up through the Regs. I really don't want to soak my stuff in bleach for obvious reasons...what (if any) are the best products available to get this bio-mess out of my gear? Will the dive shops just laugh me out of the room if I show up w/ my regs to have them take care of it? Is this stuff junk now?:confused:

    HELP!!!!!!
     
  2. MurkyRockDiver

    MurkyRockDiver Scuba Instructor

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    Try calling your LDS and ask I wouldn't use bleach but thats just me, I am sure you are not the first with this issue although I have not seen it :) Good luck and let us know how you make out.
     
  3. Ana

    Ana Manta Ray

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    I wouldn't discard the power of bleach. Just think about the strengh used for each case.

    Depending on the type of fins, they may be able to handle an almost pure solution, diluting more according to each item. Several rinses afterwards and you'll have the cleanest gear in your area.

    My gear is either in the back of a truck or in the boat. Once when it was in the truck, it took a soak from a 2.5 gal. container filled with chlorine I use for the pool. The heavy duty denier of the divebag got the worse of it, but everything else got its share too. The only true fatality was a T-shirt that pretty much desintegrated, the BC used to be black and now has redish clouds, the outside pocket of the dive is in threads but the rest of the bag is fine (with a few redish clouds too).
    I realize that just about everything lost structural integrity to certain degree but I've dived many times since the incident without having to replace anything yet.

    On a less dramatic note, I know of people that regularly add a few ounces of bleach to the tub where they rinse their gear each and every weekend after their dives, with no negative effects.

    I'd be willing to loose up to 50% of the life of my gear before considering dealing with mold.
     
  4. Teamcasa

    Teamcasa Sr. Moderator Staff Member ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Near Pasadena, CA
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    Dry it out, clean it in a mild bleach solution, rinse - repeat. Have the regs cleaned and serviced.

    Dave
     
  5. spectrum

    spectrum Dive Bum Wannabe ScubaBoard Supporter

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: The Atlantic Northeast (Maine)
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    Mild and multiple treatements were suggested for a non-dive gear mold problem I have. The importatnt thing is to repeat to get it all. If you avoid destructive concentrations you stand a good chance. Remember to rinse thouroughly and dry as effectively as possible.

    Pete
     
  6. PerroneFord

    PerroneFord DIR Practitioner

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  7. Leisure Pro Brett

    Leisure Pro Brett Dive Shop

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: New York City
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    Christine,

    First off I would like to wish you luck in cleaning this stuff off, I have a feeling you are in for quite a bit of work. I would say the first step would be to get the bulk of the muck off, just a regular rinse with a hose to loosen everything up. Then try one of these three things

    Mirazyme

    Slosh LFC

    500 PSI Wash

    My first recommendation would be the Mirazyme. All these products are designed to be used on scuba gear so you don't have to worry about damage to your gear like bleach might cause. I would also recommend a full service on the regs once you are done cleaning them, who knows what damage the mold may have caused there.
     
  8. Hank49

    Hank49 Scuba Instructor

    # of Dives:
    Location: Mullins River, Stann Creek, Belize
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    The sun is a great disinfectant also. Let everything bake (and flake the mould) for a couple hours. Fill up a barrel with water and mild soap and do a good old fashioned hand wash, sloshing it in and out of the water. Rinse and dry. Repeat if necessary.
    Use a toothbrush and soap solution for the mouthpieces. You can easily take the mask apart by removing the clips that hold the glass in place. (this is probably one of your uglier pieces?) It's easy to clean and reassemble.
     
  9. Skeeter1097

    Skeeter1097 Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Spanaway, Wa
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    Don't Guss at this. I am not sure of the spelling but the co. to call is surfpro. They clean all molds out of anything.
     
  10. ChristineG

    ChristineG Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 50 - 99
    Location: Houston, Texas
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    Thanks everyone...you gave me the courage to go at it in my bathtub w/ a mild bleach and liquid detergent solution (about 2 cups for an entire tub of warm water)...after 3 rounds of bleach soaks followed by rinsing things are looking much brighter (and I have yet to fade/discolor anything which was my primary concern). I still won't know the extent of the cleaning until everything is fully dry and obviously, I'll be taking the regs to the LDS for proper servicing before using them again....mold + breathing apparatus = scary + proceed w/ caution
     
  11. Angry Turtle

    Angry Turtle Surface Interval Member

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    I would try Listerine mouthwash. It is disinfectant but safe.

    I use it every so often on my bc's wing.
     
  12. PerroneFord

    PerroneFord DIR Practitioner

    # of Dives:
    Location: The Borg Cube
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    Listerine is a disenfectant, but but maybe not a good one for this purpose. I learned about the two products I linked, from the rebreather divers. They use them to clean their breathing loops. These fabric and plastic/rubber materials must be made sanitary because whatever is in there goes straight into the lungs of the diver. These two products seem to be more widely used than any other's I've read about for that use.

    Based on their use in hospitals, veternariy clinics, as pre-surgical scrub cleansers, etc., I feel pretty safe with them.
     
  13. Mako Mark

    Mako Mark Scuba Instructor

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    one thing that works well on regs and other silicone items without damage is mild hydrogen peroxide solution, not at hair bleach strength, but at first aid kit strength, your chemist will be able to give you the right one.
     
  14. Mako Mark

    Mako Mark Scuba Instructor

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    one thing that works well on regs and other silicone items without damage is mild hydrogen peroxide solution, not at hair bleach strength, but at first aid kit strength, your chemist will be able to give you the right one.
     
  15. lmorin

    lmorin Loggerhead Turtle

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: New Hampshire
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    My wife's mask has custom lenses in it and there are a number of tiny spaces in which moisture lingers. Once, it did not dry properly before being stored in an airtight container. LOTS of mold. I killed the stuff with a small amount of straight bleach, then diluted that and let it sit for a half hour. Stuff was dead, but not completely gone. After a thorough rinse, hydrogen peroxide took care of the rest.
     
  16. scubak

    scubak Manta Ray

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    I will have to try these...
    I have my "second" mask and I love it but it is getting some discoloration and mold/mildew around the skirting...doesn't bother me but does bother my dive buddies...
    Hehe.!!!
    K
     
  17. Leisure Pro Brett

    Leisure Pro Brett Dive Shop

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: New York City
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    Christine, I'm glad to here that you got it all clean!
     
  18. Cave Diver

    Cave Diver Moderator Staff Member

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    Or you could just replace them...
     
  19. Tassie_Rohan

    Tassie_Rohan Manta Ray

    # of Dives: 200 - 499
    Location: Melbourne
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    Sun and saltwater works for me.

    Whenever I even suspect the smallest spot of mold on any of my dive gear it means I have to take all of it somewhere hot and dive the hell out of it.

    At least thats what I tell my wife.
     

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