ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How Long Does Air in a Scuba Tank Last?

Updated on September 1, 2011

Air Consumption: the Basics

Everyone has a different basic surface air consumption rate. This depends on gender (males have bigger lungs on average), fitness (those in good physical condition use less air), smoking (smokers use more air) and stress (the more stress the more air). On the surface, these differing air consumption rates really don't matter because the air that we are able to breathe is unlimited.

However, when you go underwater in scuba diving, your air is limited by the tank. This problem is compounded by the fact that when you go under water, the pressure increases, including the pressure of the air in your tank. For example, when you go to 10m underwater, you use the air in the tank twice as quickly as you would breathing from the same tank on the surface. At 40m, it's 5x more quickly. So things like gender, fitness and stress can really make a huge difference.

scuba-tank.jpg
scuba-tank.jpg

Air Consumption: Part 2

Now that we've covered the basics, there are a few more factors to consider about how long your scuba tank lasts when diving.

1. Water temperature: the colder the water, the faster you will use your air because you need a thicker wetsuit and more weights.

2. Weighting: the more body fat your have and the more inexperienced you are, the more weights you will need to use and the faster you will use your air.

3. Trim: if you have things dangling all over your body, it will be harder for you to move through the water and the faster you will use your air.

4. Current/work-load: if it's a very relaxing, easy dive, you will not use your air very quickly. If you are constantly kicking very hard, you will use your air rapidly.

5. Experienced level: the more experienced you are, the less air you will use.

6. Tank Size: an obvious one worth mentioning!

Did I miss any factors that influence air consumption?

See results
scuba-tanks.jpg
scuba-tanks.jpg

Just Answer the Question Already!

How Long Does Air in a Scuba Tank Last?

It should be obvious by now that there really is no answer. I'm a diving instructor and will occasionally have twice as much air remaining in the tank as other divers at the end of the dive. Most often, I have 10-30% more.

As a general rule though, in tropical conditions you can expect your dives to be between 40-60 minutes, unless you're going very deep for some specific reason such as a shipwreck, in which case you'll use your air much more quickly. In colder waters, where 5-8mm wetsuits or drysuits are required, you can expect your dives to be between 25-40 minutes.

How Long are your Dives?

See results

What's been your longest dive?

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • Countryluthier profile image

      E L Seaton 

      6 years ago from Virginia

      Still waiting to do it! I may just skydive first and then hit the bucket list. Divings on there just behind other priorities. Great lens!

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)