Scuba Tech Tips: Choosing A Good Dive Store – S08E18

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Walk into any dive store, can you tell if it’s a good one? Alec shows how you can tell a good dive store based on his decades of dive store ownership experience.

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Rating: 4.92

35 Comments
  1. wmdoucette says

    It’s always nice when a staff member can be bothered to help you within 15min of walking in the door.

  2. Steven Liu says

    Nice video again! Great tips.

  3. Alexandre Boudreault says

    Mr.Alec question for you, where is your store in Ontario? I would love to visit it and also scuba dive with you.

  4. Sirax123 says

    What an idiot, i watched all 12:20 of the video, glad i stopped before I finished the video.

  5. Disgruntled Mule says

    Thanks for sharing your knowledge Alec.

  6. DrLandscapeInc says

    Thanks again for a great video Alec. You are becoming popular – Simply Scuba – another youtuber has quoted some of your comments. Your Academy Award nomination is on its way!! 🙂

  7. SoFlo Exotic Life says

    This guy is so underrated. Hos experience and talk game is inpecable. I love this old guys advice

  8. mudman0572 says

    Hi Alec, Just curious about your opinion on snorkels. Should they be worn on mask, or get a roll up one and just carry with you. Seems like there is a lot of controversy on this issue. Would truly appreciate your opinion and recommendations. Thanks for all your hard work.

  9. diver dave says

    These days you can google search a stores name and read reviews and I must say they are quite accurate and if you don't believe me just read them and walk into that store … And also follow Alex's tips from this video he never lies ! It was much easier 40 years ago because there wasn't 1000 different colors to choose from …. ha ha ha

  10. Ice Game says

    Can you talk about full face mask

  11. Nick Abadiotakis says

    Hey, do you happen to have a video regarding the lifespan of an aluminum tank and the bad alloy luxfer used? I have tanks made outside the range where the bad alloy was used but still no one wants to hydro test my tanks. If they pass the hydro test, doesn't that mean they are good?

  12. Bob1551 says

    Hey Aleic great video. What about a video on cold water diving (0-15 °C)/low visibility diving? Here in Germany we always have these 2 conditions and I'm often not sure whether to spend extra money on gear that is actually "cold-certified" or if that would be only for extreme ice diving… Many people here e.g. dive with 2 tanks and 2 first stages. Is that an overkill for water > 0 °C?

  13. Hunting NZ says

    Hi Alec, I recently got my dive tanks refilled and went for a dive, I felt like I was burning underwater/ over heating under water (I was diving around 90ft) my face was bright red i was told. Ive been told that it was because of the air in my tank being stale? Ive been diving for over 10yrs and this is the first time this has happened

  14. Paul White says

    Alec I was in that very store last year speaking to whom I was told was the owner. He was a very nice man to speak with, but spent more time pushing me towards a trip and less time talking to me about the equipment I came in to get. I was told to go home and do some research, and come back when I was ready to buy? I called a place in Toronto who invited me down to chat and offered to help me out. I spent an entire day with them and bought a full kit from top to bottom. A nice looking store is one thing, but good listening skills and patience is another. I do very much enjoy your videos however. LOL….

  15. Richard Currin says

    I have to confess I now just click on like before I watch these

  16. Jess Peoples says

    Hi, Alex. If you are in the Birmingham, area, you should stop by scuba Ventures. I bought some new fin spring straps today. They are the best in the state of Alabama. They are an awesome dive store.

  17. alan salter says

    Hi Alec
    Have watched a whole load of your videos over the last year and now am almost feeling I am starting to actually know you. How weird is that? Loved the video on choosing a dive store. How different is the one I use ! Here in the U.K. I tend to buy my gear from the internet as local stores are quite limited. Could you step outside your comfort zone and talk about online retailers?
    Some of my equipment has come from other countries in Europe and has proved to be excellent. Anyway whatever you decide I’ll still be watching. Regards. Alan. Shoreham-by-Sea. West Sussex. England.

  18. Ted Reitsma says

    Hi Alec. great video as usual. I agree with you for the most part. Some owners just get tired and let things slide – not good business sense. 
    I actually have been to Scuba 2000, AquaSub (you worked at both but we never met) and a fair number of others. I would also suggest that a good dive shop, when they service your equipment, gives you back the old o-rings/parts in a bag. They of course should not be used, but it shows or should show that they actually replaced the old ones when servicing your regulators etc. I took a course on maintenance of equipment, they showed what a 'vis check' on a tank does. I know for a fact that the other shop I used to bring my tanks to does not do the job properly (e.g. have a device to look at the cylinder threads for damage). I would tend to trust dive shops that did advanced training / tech training more too to service equipment. My only other comment (for AquaSub in this case) is that it would be nice to have a copy of the scuba course books out where clients can look inside them vs behind the counter. I used AquaSub once (they were the only ones 'close by' that could service my Poseidon rebreather). I was happy with them but they were way to far away from my home to use them regularly.

  19. MDO VIDEO says

    Nice

  20. This may blow your mind but women are perfectly capable of running a business

  21. Velvetmango says

    Thank God that shop is not near me. I can almost feel my paycheck draining away…

  22. Jacques Poirier says

    I'm believeing that many dive store owner can be jaleous of your store because it calls for huge maintenance energy and ultimately increased operation costs

  23. Team Peg Leg says

    For me the thing I look for the most is a good fill station, with reasonable prices. Beyond that the little dohickeys and repair parts that you need.

  24. david frank says

    I have been very fortunate to have a working relationship with two different dive shops. Once you have been into a good dive shop you know what to expect and when you walk into a bad one you pick up that right away. I have one shop that is less than a half a mile from my home. I have only been in there a handful of times over my 30-plus years of scuba diving. The only time I stopped there is if I need my tanks filled and do not have the time to go to my other two choices.

  25. Pricediver says

    woww, I went to my local dive store today, and it was the WORST experience I've ever had. I walked in and regulators BCDS waiting to get serviced were lying everywhere, and the owner was literally doing his own stuff the entire time, he said he was really behind and busy…. he said that he can make another appointment with me. I am soooo disappointed. Is this normal ?? or I'm being too strict?

  26. David Hellyer says

    My store lets me in their service area.  Big and nice–but still do not know why service costs are so high everywhere.  Tech wages and O-rings are not that much

  27. iranicus says

    Will be heading up to the local dive store this weekend to get some fins to wear with my dry suit, I shall have to test them out :>

  28. Will says

    Hi Alec
    That is great advice Alec. Down here in Fl one can swing a cat and let it go and find a dive shop that easy lol.

  29. Justin Shrawder says

    Great tips I agree with your tips, keep up the great videos!!!

  30. tkmcdon says

    Another extremely helpful video! Thanks for always sharing so many great tips with us. I’m still waiting for the Full Face Mask video. I’m considering the Ocean Reef FFM, but need your advice. Thanks!

  31. HD Scuba says

    Very smart comment you made, so many dive stores are only diving orientated and don't know the basic in retail industry. Often the staff are DM or instructor with little knowledge and interest in products that they sale. Other thing you could mention is website, with clear information about course, dive site , eg. Some shop advertise course that they can't conduct. For instance, they told you about some specialties or tec diving but they use an external contractor without clear mention in they ad about availability, minimum numbers of people… . So they give wrong impression about they activities that sometime could be assimilate to a fraud for fake advertisement (courses, maintenance, dive site acess…).
    Last thing, Alec pierce, you are a very pleasant and passionate person to lesson and please keep doing your awesome video!!
    Hugo, an instructors 🙂

  32. Travis Tobiasson says

    I've been in one store where they didn't have something I was looking for and actually referred another store and actually called to see if that other store had what I was looking for. I appreciated that gesture.

  33. Alain Dumesny says

    no mention of seeing their service area or fill station ? that would give a good indication if they cut corner where it matters the most. a new BCD or regulator is gonna be the same no matter where you buy it pretty much…

  34. Joe Blow says

    I have no retail experience/operating knowledge and can’t help but wonder about the costs of having such an expensive inventory. Do manufacturers provide the product and get paid after it’s sold or do shop owners actually pay for all those cool toys and just hope it sells? After being in business for some time with continuous cash flow, I can see it working but initially investing in that much inventory seems daunting…

  35. David S says

    We used to have nice consumer oriented dive stores like that in WA state. Not like that anymore that I know of. Probably way too expensive to do in this state anymore. Miss those old days. Thanks again guys!

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