Foggy masks! It’s the age old problem! We have all experienced this many times during our diving lives. It’s just Sooo frustrating! After preparing our mask, we enter the water, or pool and then the mask starts to fog up. No matter how many times we flush out the mask with water, or how many times we take the mask off on the surface and spit in it, the mask fogs up again and again within a few short moments.
So many people get so frustrated by this, but the solution to this problem is very simple. It’s all about the preparation.
Oh, I know that everyone is aware that they have to put some fluid onto the mask at the beginning of the dive. Some spit, some put commercial anti fog fluid and some put baby hair shampoo. All of these preparations are fine if they are applied correctly.
So, what is the correct way to prepare a mask? It’s surprising that even many Diving Instructors that I meet don’t know the correct proceedure, but it’s all to do with if the Mask is wet or dry.
Once you have removed the protective silicone from a new mask with toothpaste, you will then have to prepare your mask for every dive.
When you first apply the anti-fog fluid (I like the baby shampoo option!) The mask MUST be bone dry. So often I see people rinse the mask out with water, then while still wet spit or apply fluid to the mask. This will almost certainly not work! The mask will probably fog up at some point during the dive.
Once you have applied the fluid to your DRY mask, then you need to rinse it in water. Now the trick is to keep the mask wet until you want to use it. This is why some Dive Boats have buckets or tanks for you to keep your mask in between dives.
As long as your mask stays underwater, it will be fine for your dive.
I do all of this, but my Mask still fogs up! why is this?
So lets have a look at why some masks still fog up.
The main reason is because the diver has let the mask dry before putting it on. In warm conditions, this only takes a minute or two. Imagine that you have put anti-fog fluid into your (dry) mask, then rinsed it. But then you have put it onto a bench while you put on your fins, or do a buddy check. The mask could easily have dried a bit, then you put it on, go diving, and then it’s likely to fog up.
I’m a PADI instructor, so a problem that I often see is in the pool. Between skills, divers often take off their masks and put them around their neck while an instructor briefs the next skill. During that time, the mask dries out and will soon start to fog.
So the big tips are… Put anti-fog fluid onto a DRY mask, Keep the Mask WET until you want to use it, and then KEEP THE MASK ON. (or at least keep it submerged if you do take it off)
I hope that some of these tips will help you have a fog free life!!
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