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Bad Air Fills? You tell me...
charstew - 7/15/2009 9:10 PM
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Category: Equipment
Comments: 7
I am a little perplexed. I got a tank from Todds Scuba at Twin Quarries in Circleville, OH. It was brand new and never filled. I was going to put it in service for Nitrox but I needed it on Sunday while I was there so I had it filled twice. I dumped the air and looked inside the tank and saw black spots all over the inside. The date the tank was made as 06/09 and a visual of 7/09. Black spots, correct me if I am wrong; are from a compressor throwing oil into the air. Does this mean that I should no longer get fills there? CO posioning can kill and add Nitrox to oil and you may blow up the dive shop. Any opinions? Now the stupid tank would need cleaned. Or I could just make it only Air it would almost be cheaper to buy another tank already Oxygen certified. It also makes me wonder if I should have my first stage cleaned as well. 


charstew - 8/16/2009 9:05 AM
Well is is really hard to tell. It may have been a one time thing but I had other tanks filled there and seemed to have no issue. I am left with no conclusion but I am only getting air fills from one place from now. If I get fills anywhere else it will only be Nitrox. My theory with that is if a shop has contaminated air and add oxygen then they will eventually blow themselves up. LOL So if they can fill Nitrox and still have a shop left the air must be good. One thing for certain after paying 50 bucks a bottle to get them cleaned I have become motivated to take Visual Inspection and Oxygen cleaning classes. I am looking at PSI for the classes.
dalehall - 7/24/2009 11:20 AM
So, how did everything work out in this case?
nauidiver - 7/17/2009 8:28 AM

Hey man if you know for sure it’s oil, I would make sure the dive shop knows about it so they can get that compressor fixed & I would have them clean your tank like you said... Even if it’s not doing it anymore the compressor still needs the rings replaced & to be serviced before it kills someone. You would think that is something the shop would want to know about. I know I would! After that’s done I would still get my tanks filled there as long as they do all they can to fix the prob. If they don’t then I would not go back & I would make sure it get posted in the paper!
Thats not something to play around with as you well know. If a new diver walked in there & did not know what to look for like you did it could have turned out really bad.
Sorry to hear that your having to deal with that. Hope it all works out for ya!

- Dale
charstew - 7/16/2009 4:39 PM
I am still wondering if it wasn’t just a fluke I had a buddy that had a new tank and had no issue it looked good. I am not sure if there is another way to know or find out. I swear I could smell oil around the threads of the tank valve. I like the shop up there so I don’t want to jump to conclusions and I will ask him to clean or replace it.
scubaclay - 7/16/2009 2:47 PM

As a shop owner, take the tank back to Mr. Todds, and make him clean it, wash it and then take it to a reputable air fill service. Make sure he does NOT charge you. And yes you should have your regs serviced.

RonSubmerged - 7/16/2009 9:57 AM

I spoke with my instructor about this problem and he was concerned that I would have it in the tank I used as well. We did a vis on it and there was slight discoloration, mostly what resembles the coloring on the outside of the tank. He also informed me that if the tank did in fact get oil inside, it would be concentrated on the valve (the tube that goes inside tank when screwed in) and it would be right around the rim under the opening. His advice was to check the tube and run your finger along the rim in a circle and verify if it is slick or rough, look for any oily odors, and verify if the spots aren’t the natural discoloration of the inside texture. 

Im not doubting you in any way, but just giving what I would consider expert advice on this matter. Let me know what you determine, 

DeepAddiction - 7/16/2009 9:31 AM
Man, that’s not good. I’m a newbie and just took my Nitrox class last night but your blog sounded like the text book case of all the bad stuff that can happen. Good Luck.