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I just came back from a cruise in the caribbean and my z1 flowed seawater in with my air at the surface. needless to say, i swam back to the boat and got a rental reg/console, thus not getting to use my supposedly more reliable reg and my dive computer.
maybe i missed something, but i could swear that the padi instructor said that the only failure a reg could have was free-flowing, which my daughters atomic octo did, thus neccesitating her switch to rental gear.
i'll be bringing both regs into the shop for service, but i'm confused about the possible causes of the seawater leak.
Cracked mouthpiece is common cause. Could also be a tear or fold in the exhaust valve. Or just some dirt preventing the valve from sealing. Worst case is probably a cracked case. There are many possible failure mode for regulator. Thankfully, almost all will still allow gas delivery. In your case, if you were at depth when the problem occured, you could have switched to your octo or purged the primary to keep the gas flowing.
Cracked mouthpiece is common cause. Could also be a tear or fold in the exhaust valve. Or just some dirt preventing the valve from sealing. Worst case is probably a cracked case. There are many possible failure mode for regulator. Thankfully, almost all will still allow gas delivery.
yes, I was still able to get air mixed in with the water.
In your case, if you were at depth when the problem occured, you could have switched to your octo or purged the primary to keep the gas flowing.
I was at the surface, but that's an excellent point to remember re: breathing using the flow while using the purge button, or switching to the octo.
The number 1 reason I sea for water getting into a reg... mouthpiece. It is very seldom the exhaust valve or diaphragm unless it's a very old reg. Try pulling on the mouthpiece a bit and look for cracks... and try to twist it around. If it moves, then the tie wrap probably is not tight enough.
I'd say the odds are normally 9 out of 10 end up being mouthpiece when we get the "water in my mouth" complaint.
Well I'm a cheap "fix it myself until I break it worse" kinda guy, so I'd try to figure out just where in the reg the water is coming in. The diaphragm, mouthpiece, and exhaust valve are the most vulnerable parts of the thing, so I'd poke and prod those first. I've seen sand get in some of my club's rental regulators and prevent the exhaust valve from closing up all the way and all it took was a good rinse. Same thing with the diaphragm.. but I've seen pinholes in those that can be hard to see.
If it's not obvious after looking around the reg and playing with the mouthpiece, take it to where you bought it and let them have a look.s
A small amount of water entering the second stage is normally due to a pin hole in the diaphragm. ($5.00-$10.00)
Larger amounts are normally due to a stuck/folded over exhaust valve ($0) or a crack in the case (big $).
A mouthpiece with holes or cracks in it is usually somewhere in the middle but is very common. We catch a lot of them in the shop at annual service that have apparently been asymptomatic. But on the boat it is the number one casue of wet breathing reg complaints. Usually really wet reg breathing complaints when the crack(s) reach a critical size and/or location.
When I first got my Atomic Z1, it leaked around the mouthpiece during every dive. I found that the stiff regulator hose was twisting the regulator out of my mouth and creating a gap between my lips and the mouthpiece. The fix was to get a more secure mouthpiece (I didn't care for the stock mouthpiece anyway) and to get a 2nd stage swivel.