The value of owning your own Scuba equipment


There are many advantages to owning your own dive equipment. Just as in any sport, once you have a personal set of equipment, you tend to use it more often and also get better at what you are doing with it. Familiarity with a personal set of scuba gear means greater comfort and a better dive experience. In a practical sense, being unsure of the quality and fit of the scuba equipment you rent can always be a nagging problem  you may have to deal with time and again. It is a sigh of relief if you dive frequently, and having that level of comfort knowing it is your own gear can make a lot of difference to your dive experience. More importantly, it can help you avoid an emergency situation.

Safety if an emergency arises
From a safety perspective, owning your own gear ensures you know how to manipulate it in an emergency – ditching weights for example. Get to know your gear: practice adjusting it and ask your PADI Instructor for recommendations. By consistently diving with the same equipment you’ll learn how things are “supposed” to feel which will also help you dial in scuba skills such as buoyancy.

If you frequently dive with the same buddy, it’s beneficial for both divers to own their own gear. By knowing your buddy’s equipment, you’ll be better prepared to deal with an unexpected problem. Consider an out of air situation: when seconds matter you’ll want to know whether to go for a yellow second stage, or if your buddy will give you his primary while breathing off a secondary located on his inflator. Another common problem is a readjusting a tank that’s slipped; knowing your buddy’s buckles and releases makes this a lot easier to fix in the water.

Not sure which piece of scuba gear to invest in first?
You probably own your own mask, fins and snorkel. If not, it’s a good idea to get these items first as there isn’t one mask that fits all faces, and who wants to use a snorkel that’s been in someone else’s mouth? Once you have the basics, it’s time to move on to the big stuff: BCD, dive computer, regulator, etc. Of these, the most practical and essential would be the dive computer, as it becomes more essential once you begin to dive regularly. The level of accuracy provided by the dive computer with regards to depths, water temperatures and more importantly the decompression limits definitely makes you enjoy your every dive and keeps you wanting more.

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