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Personal Flotation Device Serviceability

Your PFDs must be in serviceable condition, which means:

  • The buckles or zippers must work correctly.
  • The straps must be securely attached and not torn.
  • The fabric must not be frayed or deteriorated.
  • The seams must not be torn.
  • The buoyant material must still be resilient and not compressed, waterlogged, or moldy.

Any PFDs not in serviceable condition should be discarded and replaced.

To keep your PFDs in good condition, rinse them thoroughly after each use. As you rinse them, inspect them for frayed fabric or ripping seams. If you have an inflatable PFD, make sure it has a full CO2 cylinder and that all status indicators on the inflator are green; follow all manufacturer maintenance recommendations. Make sure the PFDs are completely dry before you store them. Store the PFDs out of the sun, because UV rays can damage the nylon fabric.

Don't use a PFD as a cushion, because when the foam gets compressed, the buoyancy decreases.

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