2 Use silicone grease sparingly. The grease is not what seals your housing – the O-ring takes care of that. Too much silicone grease attracts dirt and debris. Just use enough to keep the O-ring glistening and moist.
3 Don’t open your housing more than you absolutely have to. Every time you open it there’s a chance water, sand or dirt will enter the housing or stick to the O-ring.
4 Dismantle connections (strobe cables, macro/dome port spacer rings etc.) regularly, especially where different metals meet. Corrosion has a tendency to make them fuse together.
5 Use a couple of bags of silica gel to absorb moisture and prevent fogging – especially if you have a polycarbonate housing. Make sure you place them where they can’t jam any of the controls.
6 Ensure your housing is dry and dust-free before storing it. Leave it closed to avoid dust and dirt entering the housing. Change the O-ring as soon as it gets flat or depressed or shows any signs of wear.
7 Don’t use any detergents to clean the housing. This may damage the finish and dissolve silicone grease from the O-rings, especially in the buttons. Use lukewarm water with a little vinegar if you need to dissolve salt crystals or any other deposits.
8 Remove batteries from the camera and strobes when in storage. They may rupture and the acid can cause irreparable damage. This is especially true for cheaper rechargeable batteries.
9 Leave the O-rings alone as much as you can. You don’t have to remove them after every dive. Pay extra attention if you’ve been diving where there’s very fine sand or silt – cleaning may be necessary.
10 Be careful with DIY fixes. Ask your dealer or the manufacturer if you have problems getting everything to work properly.
Read the full article on camera maintenance in the May 2014 issue of DIVE.