How Long Do Survival Suits Last?

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Last Updated on June 12, 2023 by Umar

Survival suits, also known as immersion suits, are essential pieces of equipment designed to protect the wearer from hypothermia and increase the chances of survival in cold water

On average, a survival suit will last three to seven years, depending on how often it is used and how well it is taken care ofWith proper care, a survival suit can last over ten years.

Types of Immersion Suits

There are three main types of immersion suits:

  1. Fishermen’s suits: These suits are worn continuously by fishermen working in frigid temperatures to keep their bodies warm and insulated.
  2. Emergency suits: These suits are mandatory on all ships, boats, and oil rigs, providing protection during emergencies.
  3. Aviation suits: These suits are designed for pilots and aircrew members, featuring airtight materials and forced-air cooling systems.

Proper Care and Maintenance

To extend the lifespan of a survival suit, it is essential to follow proper care and maintenance guidelines:

  • Routine inspections: Check the suit material, zippers, and inflation hoses for any damage or malfunction.
  • Proper storage: Ensure the suit is clean and completely dry before storing it. Roll the suit from the bottom up, folding the arms across once you reach the top, and place it in its bag with all closures sealed.
  • Monthly drills: Check the seams, equipment, and fit of your suit during monthly drills.
  • Manufacturer’s recommendations: Follow the manufacturer’s maintenance and cleaning instructions, and regularly inspect your immersion suit to ensure it is in good working condition.

Factors Affecting Suit Lifespan

Several factors can affect the lifespan of a survival suit:

  • Usage: The more frequently a suit is used, the shorter its lifespan will be.
  • Care: Proper care and maintenance can significantly extend the life of a survival suit.
  • Storage: Storing the suit in a clean, dry, and well-ventilated area away from direct sunlight and heat can help prolong its life.
  • Quality: The quality of the suit’s materials and construction can also impact its durability and lifespan.

Innovations in Survival Suit Technology

There have been significant advancements in survival suit technology in recent years, with companies like White Glacier developing next-generation suits like the Arctic 10+ 

These suits offer improved safety, comfort, and survivability compared to traditional neoprene survival suits

Other innovations include the incorporation of Outlast technology in helicopter passenger survival suits for better comfort.

In conclusion, the lifespan of a survival suit depends on its usage, care, and quality.

With proper care and maintenance, a survival suit can last for several years, providing essential protection in cold water environments.

As technology continues to advance, survival suits are becoming more effective and comfortable, further enhancing their life-saving capabilities.

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