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Mask leak

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by XPATMANX, Jun 7, 2008.

  1. XPATMANX

    XPATMANX Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
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    hello. im new to diving so this question is probably pretty dumb but its serious so pleasae take me serioustly.

    question: i was taking my open water course for the last month or so and at the end of the pool sessions i noticed that my akona mask was leaking from somewhere. so i went into the dive shop and they gave me the same mask free of charge.I went diving for my first time with this mask today. I went on two 40 foot dives for about 40 minutes each. i came out of the water and went home without a problem. I then thought to myself that i would check my mask just incase of a leak. I tried them on and when i would suck in through my nose i could see air bubbles comming throught the right side of my mask by the seal. I was wondering, since this is the second time... if you know what could be causing this leaking problem or if the mask is designed this way. Its not a heavy flow leak but its enough to be a newsense.

    I appreciate all of your answers :) thankyou
     
  2. fisherdvm

    fisherdvm Divemaster Candidate

    # of Dives:
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    Either your face is too big or too small, it could cause a leak. Second, if the seal is folded upon itself, it can cause a leak. Third, if you had a beard, or if strands of hair is caught between the mask skirt and your skin it could cause a leak. And, finally, if the strap is too loose, it can cause a leak.

    Diving with a hood causes additional problem, as the hood can cause the skirt to lie above it, kinked up, or other issue. Some times it is hard to flatten the skirt with gloved hands.

    Lastly, if you dive in very cold water, some times the skirt becomes stiff, and does not mould well to your face. You might have to tighten the mask a bit more in cold water.

    Finally, if all fails, look for a mask that is made closer to your facial dimension. Although most masks fit 90% of the face, a few people have faces that only 30% of the masks will fit.
     
  3. Dan Gibson

    Dan Gibson Divemaster

    # of Dives:
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    I find most leaks are either related to a poor fitting mask or the straps being too tight which distorts the skirt. With a proper fitting mask, the mask will generally stay on underwater without straps until you equalize that space.

     
  4. XPATMANX

    XPATMANX Angel Fish

    # of Dives: 0 - 24
    Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
    35
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    Sorry for the bad definition of the problem i came up with. The seal between the skirt and the hard plastic is leaking. Right where the hard plastic and the seal that touches your face meet.
     
  5. yyidus

    yyidus Angel Fish

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    It sounds like either you didn't fit the mask directly to skin (hair, hood, tension from the snorkel can alter the mask fit) or the mask is simply the wrong fit. Also, straining to bite down on the regulator can alter your facial fit.

    Have you tried, out of the water, doing the following:

    Take off the snorkel, move the mask strap away from the front. Hold the mask right up to your face, and breath in. Then 'hold' the air (don't let any air out of your nose). Without sucking in, the mask should stick to your face. Keep it stuck on for 30 seconds, while tilting your head in all directions (especially down). If it doesn't stay on, you've got a bad fit. Get a different mask.

    If you are going to try a different mask, try going to an LDS with an onsite pool and see if they'll let you try several.
     
  6. yyidus

    yyidus Angel Fish

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    It's leaking from the skirt/hard plastic border? That's definitely a bad mask. The normal place for a leak is the skirt/face barrier. Anything else is a manufacturing defect. It might be a bad batch of masks that all have the same problem.
     
  7. fisherdvm

    fisherdvm Divemaster Candidate

    # of Dives:
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    3,423
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    Interesting, I've not observed it. I've only observed when I go through a thermocline, and it gets real cold, my mask would leak. In that one instance it happened, I tighten up my mask, and the leak stopped. I would never think of loosening it... But it certainly can happen for some mask.
     
  8. Rick Inman

    Rick Inman Advisor ScubaBoard Supporter

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    No problems diving the mask? Then I think I would just enjoy it!
     
  9. Dan Gibson

    Dan Gibson Divemaster

    # of Dives:
    Location:
    1,410
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    I see it weekly during class with new students. Too tight is not good. These students generally think tighter is better so they really crank down which results in distortion of the skirt. I even demo to these people that mask straps are not necessary to keep the mask sealed. Assuming a proper fitting mask, once the straps are lossened up a bit, problems with leaking tend to go away.

    I personally have never experienced a leak when going into cold water. Then a again, I wear a frameless which gives me a perfect seal anyway.

    Obviously the OP has a different problem.

     
  10. Charlie99

    Charlie99 Solo Diver

    # of Dives: 500 - 999
    Location: Silicon Valley, CA / New Bedford, MA / Kihei, Maui
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    Give your mask back to the dive shop.

    Keep the one that works.

    The bubbles at the joint between the frame and the mask skirt in the 1st mask are probably caused by manufacturing defect.
     

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