The sport of hookah diving, also known as scuba diving, is ideal for anyone who wants to explore the underwater world without the heavy gear of traditional scuba diving. You can explore the underwater world with minimal interference when using a hookah diving system.
When you’ve mastered snorkeling and are ready to progress to scuba diving, a hookah diving system is a great option. Scuba combines the ease and freedom of snorkeling with the underwater breathing capabilities of snorkeling. Please be aware that you must present proof of your scuba certification when ordering a hookah diving system.
Review of Hookah Diving:
Hookah diving, or “scuba diving,” involves an air compressor that delivers air through a long, flexible hose to the diver under water. Depending on its size, it can run for three to five hours on a tank hookah diving and supply air to more than one diver at a time. Hookah diving usually takes place at depths of less than 40 feet. The word “hookah” conjures images of a tall, multi-hosed tobacco pipe from the Arabian Nights. It is probably because of this that surface supplied air diving has become known as scuba or scuba diving.
It is not necessary to use a BCD or first stage regulator when hookah diving. The diver wears a harness which is the attachment point for the down-line and weight belt. The hookah regulator is specifically designed for use with a second stage regulator. This will not work with a traditional scuba regulator.
Although hookah diving requires minimal personal gear, to purchase a hookah system you will need a scuba certification. Hookah diving is no different from scuba diving because all safety precautions apply. Decompression stops, compressed air and diving computers, and other safety factors need to be learned and understood before diving. Decompression sickness (DCS), commonly called “the bends,” occurs when a diver surfaces too quickly. Hookah diving can pose a serious health and safety risk.
Depth Limit of the Hookah Diving:
Hookah diving is normally done in water less than 12 meters (40 feet). However, there are hookah systems that are used by advanced recreational and commercial divers that support two divers at 25 meters (80 ft.) and one diver at 40 meters (130 ft.). Setting your own personal depth limit should be based on your training, dive experience, and capabilities. Consider that the Code of Practice for the Tasmanian Abalone Industry stipulates that professional hookah divers are not permitted to dive below 30 meters (100 ft.) using Surface Supplied Breathing Apparatus (SSBA).
How Hookah Diving Does it Work?
The PETER Diving system uses compressed air tanks, just like a SCUBA system, but the tanks can stay on the surface while the divers explore beneath the waves. There is no need for buoyancy control devices, and being attached to a floating object on a surfboard provides safety.
Components of a Hookah Diving System:
Diving with a hookah doesn’t require quite as much equipment as diving with a scuba tank. It is vitally important that the Surface Supplied Breathing Apparatus (SSBA) be properly configured, used, and maintained.
In the end, choosing a safe and reliable dive hookah can literally mean the difference between life and death.
- Air Compressor:
Hookah divers do not wear air tanks on their backs like scuba divers. The air compressor on the boat or floating platform supplies them with air. Diaphragms or pistons operate at low pressure (“low pressure” compared to the 3000+ psi of scuba diving cylinders). A pressure-relief valve prevents pressure from building up. When multiple divers are involved, more air is provided.
- Air Reserve Tank:
In a sense, the air reserve tank is a “reservoir.” As well as providing a constant volume of air, it also provides cooling and condensation. When hot air enters the air reserve tank, it is cooled. Afterwards, condensation occurs so that the diver doesn’t breathe as much moisture. It also prevents surges from the compressor. As a result, air flows evenly. If the compressor runs out of air or the engine fails, the diver will still be able to breathe pressurized air for a couple of minutes.
- Air Hose:
The air hose is made of food-grade vinyl, nylon webbing, and PVC that is oil, gas, and UV-resistant. Usually, it’s a bright color like yellow or orange so it’s visible above and below the surface. In addition to being kink-, collapse-, and abrasion-resistant, the air hose floats so that it does not entangle divers or underwater obstacles. It supports one diver at a time.
Divers breathe through hookah regulators. By inhaling this device, the diver is able to control how much air he or she receives. Hookah diving only utilizes hookah-specific second stage regulators. Scuba regulators cannot be plugged directly into hookah air lines.
The diver wears a harness to keep the air hose out of the way. It also prevents the regulator from being pulled out of the diver’s mouth (since the regulator hose attaches to the harness). To counteract your natural buoyancy and improve depth control, harnesses often integrate a weight belt.