If you are having trouble staying steady underwater, try these buoyancy control scuba diving tips.
It can be frustrating if you are always adding air or letting air out of your BC. We have all been there and can relate.
Fiddling with your BC can also take some of the pleasure out of the dive since you are preoccupied trying to stay at the proper depth. No to mention adversely affecting your air consumption.
Looking neutrally buoyant in this picture. You can get there too.
If that's not enough for you, DAN (Divers Alert Network) states that "Diving incident reports often cite overweighting and/or poor buoyancy control as a contributory factor to, or a factor associated with, accidents or near accidents."
So what can you do improve your buoyancy control and get neutrally buoyant? Try these:
So what is the proper weight? The most common answer is when you are on the surface, you should be at eye level with the water with no air in your BC.
However, this is with a full tank.
Using the proper amount of weight is key to buoyancy control.
As you use up your air, your scuba tank will become positively buoyant. This is especially important at your 15 foot safety stop because if you use the above method, you will be underweighted and will begin floating toward the surface.
If you can't get a near empty tank to test your buoyancy at the surface, you should be a little negatively buoyant at the surface with a full tank and no air in your BC and your lungs half-full.
This does not mean to put 5 extra lbs. on your weight belt. A safe bet is to put 1-2 lbs. extra on and go from there.
Your goal is to be neutrally buoyant at your 15 foot safety stop. This method is also cited in articles on DAN's website (Divers Alert Network, a non-profit organization that provides emergency medical advice and assistance for underwater diving injuries).
So at your safety stop with no air in your BC, if you are motionless (concentrate on that!) and you start ascending, your are underweighted. Conversely, if you are sinking, you are overweighted. Make adjustments in 1-2 lb. increments on your next dive.
Also, just give the BC a short shot (or release) of air. See if that is sufficient. If not, you can always add more. You do not want to overinflate - or vice-versa.
If you are wearing a scuba diving wetsuit, it will become less buoyant as you descend. As it becomes wet and the bubbles in the wetsuit compress from the pressure, the suit will lose buoyancy.
You may think you are underweighted at this point but wait until you a down for a bit before you decide - especially if you are unfamiliar with the affects of your wetsuit.
In addition, over time your wetsuit will lose some of its buoyancy as the bubbles break down. Unfortunately, it also means it will lose some of its insulation effectiveness.
Some buoyancy control tips to get the last of the air out of your BC:
Eventually you will get to the point where you can ascend or descend a few feet solely by breathing in or out. Yes, it will happen. Which brings me to the last of the buoyancy control scuba diving tips:
Hopefully these buoyancy control tips will help you with any problems you may have. Believe it or not, after enough diving, you won't even be thinking about buoyancy control. So relax and enjoy and practice these buoyancy control scuba diving tips, you will soon be neutrally buoyant.
(Since you are reading about buoyancy control, I will give you a heads up here. In the "Diving Tips Cheatsheet" which you can get below, one of the bonuses I refer to has to do with buoyancy control. You don't want to miss it.)
For even more in-depth tips on attaining neutral buoyancy, check out our Special Report "Stop The Elevator Ride". Click here for all the details.
And here are more of our scuba diving tips you can check out:
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