It's the last thing you want to hear: O-ring failure. As cheap as they are, O-rings usually are responsible for protecting our most valuable gear - cameras, lights, computers, regulators. Replace them periodically, even if they look fine. In between, keep them maintained to ensure the life of your largest investments.
- Remove the O-ring with a thin, blunt tool - never a sharp or pointy tool. Special O-ring tools are a good, cheap investment.
- Use a cotton swab stick to remove lubricant from the O-ring seat (groove). Inspect the groove for irregularities or burrs.
- Remove old lubricant with a paper towel. Inspect the O-ring for cracks and drying. Replace if damaged.
- Re-lubricate the O-ring with a very thin coating by pulling it through your greased thumb and index finger. Re-install.
- To help them keep their shape and elasticity, remove O-rings before storing equipment.
- Store greased O-rings in zipper-seal plastic bags with the equipment so you remember to re-install them.