EN 250: What is it and Why is it Stamped on my Regulator?

EN250:2000 Respiratory equipment – Open Circuit Self Contained Compressed Air Diving Apparatus – Requirements, Testing and Marking is a European normative standard that was published in the year 2000, and Regulators must be independently tested to ensure they meet these minimum requirements. The purpose of this European Standard is to ensure a minimum level of safe operation for apparatus down to a maximum depth of 50 metres (164ft).

If you’re not sure what EN 250 means, you’re not alone!

You may never have noticed the unobtrusive lettering on your first stage, except to point out that it isn’t the serial number and move on.

So, what is it and what does it say about your regulator?

Manufacturers and consumers alike expect regulators to perform to certain specifications. If you purchase a travel regulator, you expect it to deliver a good performance under the conditions it was created for- in warmer water. However, most travel regulators are not designed to dive in all conditions; there are temperature limitations on many of them that would keep you from using them in Great Lake diving or under ice. Conversely, there are regulators that are diveable in more difficult situations such as high current or ice diving. But what exists to objectively test these regulators to ensure that they all perform under these specifications and conditions?

Enter the EN 250 rating. This exists to ensure that your regulator will perform well in every environment and condition for which it is advertised. It is given by a third-party testing facility (also designated on the regulator). EN 250 is an assurance that your regulator can deliver quality breathing performance beyond the recreational depth limit. In 2013, they plan to release a new rating requirement: EN250A. This rating ensures that your primary and your octo will simultaneously breathe easily under the same testing conditions. So, here are a few markings to reference on your regulator if you’re not sure what yours is meant to do.

1. <10 degrees C/50 Degrees F: Regulators marked with that designation should not be used in cold water. In other words, your local quarry during the summer may be fine, but don’t take it in Lake Michigan

2. EN250: Your regulator is designed to operate to 165 ft and below 50 degrees F with unchanged breathing performance in the first and second stage. The octo will not perform to the same specifications and its use is not recommended below 100 ft.

3. EN250A: Your regulator is designed to operate to 165 ft and below 50 degrees F with unchanged breathing performance in the first and second stage as well as the octo.

4. CE0078 (or some variation) is the stamp of the center that tested the regulator.

Additional Markings and Abbreviations (EN250A)

  1. Demand regulators which are not designed for cold water use are marked with ‘>10°C’ on both the Second Stage Demand Valve and First Stage Pressure Reducer.
  2. Demand valves which are intended to be used with an Octopus, shall be marked with EN250 followed by an ‘A’. EN250A.
  3. You may also see the use of a; symbol (Octopus) which also indicates that Apeks First Stage pressure reducers are suitable with two second stage demand valves and for use as an escape device by more than one user at the same time.
  4. If a demand valve is marked with EN250A, this demand regulator is suitable, tested and intended to be used in water temperatures below 10°C (50°F) and configured with an Octopus.
  5. If a demand regulator is marked with EN250A >10°C, this demand valve is suitable, tested and intended to be used in water temperatures above 10°C (50°F) and configured with an Octopus.
  6. If a demand valve is only marked with EN250 and not followed by an ‘A’ or the (Octopus) symbol is not shown, then it will not be suitable for use with an Octopus and is not intended for use as an escape device by more than one user at the same time, also known as an Octopus.
  7. You will also see CE0098. This denotes the identification number of the Notified body who has independently certified and examined your product.
  8. A serial number can also be found, usually comprising of eight characters, on both the first stage pressure reducer and second stage demand valve.
  9. A hose can also be marked with the maximum working pressure of that particular type of hose, EN250 and can also include a serial number specific to that hose.

The PADI TecRec Range – When One Tank Is Not Enough!

The TecRec Range

Surface

Technical diving is scuba diving’s “extreme sport”, taking experienced and qualified divers far deeper and further than in mainstream recreational diving. Technical diving is marked by significantly more equipment and training requirements to manage the additional hazards this type of diving entails. Tec diving isn’t for everyone, but for those who want to be explore further, the TecRec courses are the answer.

Diver Levels

Most of the names of the courses in TecRec range include a number (eg Tec 40). This is an indication of the maximum depth in metres intended for a diver certified at this level. As a general rule, each course includes four dives. 

Discover Tec

This short session allows divers to give technical diving a try. It does not result in a certification, but lets a diver experience wearing the extra gear involved in technical diving and understand the rationale behind it.

Tec 40

The entry point into the technical range, Tec 40 provides a transition from recreational to technical diving. Although the use of full tech gear (doubles and wings) is preferred, it does allow modified use of recreational gear in some situations, provided the diver has two separate regulators, with one of the first stages fitted with a long hose. Double and single rigs

(For example, a main cylinder and pony cylinder combination). The intended working limit for a diver at this level is 40 metres/130 feet with up to 10 minutes of non-accelerated decompression. They may use any EANx mix with up to 50% oxygen content or air. To enrol on the course, a diver must be the equivalent of a PADI Advanced Open Water diver, with an EANx Diver rating and have deep recreational diving experience.

Tec 45

The diver must use full ‘standardised’ tech rig, including wings and doubles plus an additional deco cylinder (note that side mounted cylinders are an acceptable alternative to back mounted doubles throughout the TecRec range). The course allows the diver to go to 45 metres/145 feet and make accelerated decompression dives using any mix of EANx or pure oxygen. A diver must have the equivalent of a Tec 40 rating to enrol on this course.

Tec 50

This course represents a high level of competency for a technical diver. Although the option exists to make the last dive of the course using trimix, it is intended as an air/nitrox rating and by the end the diver can dive to a maximum of 50 metres/165 feet and make extended, accelerated decompression dives.

Tec Trimix 65

This course opens up the advantages of trimix to the diver, and divers are qualified to make multi-stop decompression dives that employ EANx and oxygen for accelerated decompression, using any trimix with an oxygen content of 18% or more. They can dive to a maximum depth of 65 metres/210 feet.

Tec Trimix

Trimix Divers

This course lets the diver go deeper, opening up the option of using travel gases and trimix with less than 18% oxygen content. Dives made during the course can be as deep as 90 metres/300 feet. Once qualified, the diver can start to explore deeper; for this reason there is no numbered suffix after the course title as in the rest of the range — there are no limits placed on how deep the diver can go after training, providing they build their experience gradually.

Gas Blender

Cylinders

The Gas Blender rating certifies the holder to mix enriched air or trimix for divers to use in recreational or technical diving operations. Courses for this level are conducted by Gas Blender Instructors.

 

Give your kids a taste for scuba diving with the PADI Seal Team and Bubblemaker program

Struggling to come up with group activities for your family? Finding fun activities that your family can enjoy together is easy now with the PADI Seal Team and Bubblemaker experience. These two programs are designed for children who are eight or older. With a little help from PADI, you can give your kids a glimpse into the scuba diving lifestyle that you love so much and set them on the path to becoming a future scuba diver.

ST_UW_BoysDescend-200x200

Children who participate in the PADI Seal Team and Bubblemaker programs will develop new skills and have their eyes opened to a whole new world. The PADI Seal Team program teaches the basics of diving such as mask clearing and will introduce them to important scuba related topics such as underwater photography and environmental awareness.

With the Bubblemaker experience, kids will have the opportunity to breathe underwater for the first time and friends and family can be there to offer support and encouragement. Participants will also learn how to use basic scuba gear in a safe and effective way, preparing them for future endeavors.

Scuba diving is not only a fun activity for kids to enjoy, but it also encourages an active lifestyle. Being physically active promotes healthy growth and development, provides opportunities for kids to meet new friends and develop their social skills, and can even help with self-esteem. Get your children active and having fun with the whole family

We Won An Award!

DiveStyle were extremely proud to receive an award from PADI EMEA for the fundraising work we have been doing for Deptherapy.

A fantastic charity that uses scuba diving to help rehabilitate injured soldiers.

We will continue to support Deptherapy, in fact we have an amazing presentation on the Titanic happing on the 14th of April 2014.

Full details can be found here

TITANIC – THE ULTIMATE PRESENTATION

and tickets can be purchased from here

TITANIC BOARDING PASS

We won an award!

We won an award!

Don’t Let The Weather Stop You From Learning To Dive

The weather is not great but the dive centre is lovely and cosy!

Don’t let the weather put you of learning to dive. Why not complete an Open Water referral in a lovely warm classroom and swimming pool.

http://www.onlinescubashop.co.uk/padi-open-water-referral-488-p.asp

You then have 12 months to complete the Open Water qualifying dives either in the UK or maybe on one of our fantastic trips to Malta.

This month you receive a fantastic TankO2 water bottle absolutely free! These are not available anywhere else in the UK.

Offer ends 31st March 2014

Local Dive Shop Vs Dive Show

Its that time of year again and the dive show will be in full swing this weekend in London.

But please remember, great folk of the DiveStyle clan.

If you are at the dive show this weekend and you do see something that you fancy then give us a quick call to see if we can price match.

If we cant we will let you know but will be very grateful that you have at least offered us the opportunity to do so.

Remember, the dive show is once a year but your local dive centre, DiveStyle, are here all year round with great advice, great support and fantastic catering!

Support your local dive centre and have a place for life to rest those weary fins :0)

DiveStyle, Unit A, Bridge Farm, Arborfield,
Wokingham, Reading, Berkshire, RG2 9HT
t: 01189 761729
e: info@divestyle.co.uk

The Ultimate Titanic Presentation – 14th April

We still have lots of tickets to sell so once again, please share this post on your Facebook page, with family, friends, stranger on the street and anyone that you think would be interested!

We have an opportunity to raise some fantastic money for Deptherapy and the RNLI, two amazing charities!

https://www.facebook.com/events/1435863379958808/

or book direct by following the link

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/titanic-the-ultimate-presentation-tickets-10674089489