How to Repair Faded Silicone in Dive Masks


As with all dive gear, a well-fitting scuba mask should be properly maintained by soaking and rinsing to remove any deposits and storing in the mask box for protection. After extended use, the mask skirt and strap can show wear by fading from exposure to salt and sunlight or cracking from dryness. Before a mask skirt dries out, the rubber shows some warping that can lead to intermittent leaks while underwater. Silicone can be applied to lubricate the rubber on mask skirts and straps to prolong its utility.

Things You'll Need

  • Sponge or toothbrush
  • Water
  • Towel
  • Dive silicone pump
  • Examine your mask and clean away any debris thoroughly using a toothbrush or sponge. Fading and warping around the edges are signs of wear; cracking indicates that the mask needs to be replaced.

  • RInse the mask thoroughly in water and dry with a towel.

  • Lay your mask on a towel and spray silicone liberally on the mask skirt and strap, on the inside and outside.

  • Wipe off any excess, particularly if silicone spills onto the lenses.

  • Rub the mask skirt and strap to check that it's lubricated and suppleness is restored.

Tips & Warnings

  • Purchase silicone spray from your local dive store that is appropriate for rubber on masks.
  • Reduce sensitivity to silicone by wiping off any excess that may be present before donning the mask.
  • Add a few pumps of silicone spray to your rinse water for enhanced conditioning.
  • Only use food-grade silicone, found in silicone sprays made for dive equipment.
  • Do not use silicone spray on equipment when diving with enriched air (EANx or nitrox) because the material is flammable.

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