Scuba Guide 2019: Chest Zip or Back Zip Wetsuit?

by Liz H. March 03, 2019

Scuba Guide 2019: Chest Zip or Back Zip Wetsuit?

The point of entry into your scuba diving wetsuit is referred to as the entry system and is an integral part of the efficiency of a wetsuit. There are two main types of entry systems: the chest zip and the back zip. Zippers are an important element of a wetsuit entry system. They come in different qualities, and usually a stronger and efficient zipper will cost you more than an inferior one.       

 

Importance of Zips to Your Wetsuit   

Before comparing the two types of zips, it is vital to know why zips are significant to your scuba wetsuit and the function they perform. The wetsuit material (neoprene) is elastic and tough hence making it perfect for water sports. The material is semi-porous which allows little water to penetrate and form a thin layer between your skin and the wetsuit interior. Since water is a poor conductor, this layer will insulate you from cold temperatures. If the zip doesn't close your wetsuit properly, the wetsuit will be either too loose or too tight. This will result into flushing (too much water) or little water inside your suit and thus reducing the insulation properties of the suit.      

 

Benefits of a Chest Zip Wetsuit  

If the wetsuit fits well there will be fewer gaps in the suit hence less flushing.     

The back of the wetsuit is in one piece because there are few panels. The chest zip wetsuitis therefore more flexible which makes maneuvering and paddling to be less tiring. This flexibility makes front zips to be the preference of water sports professionals.     

 

In case the zip jams you will not need any assistance because you can easily tackle the problem from the front.     

There is less constriction around your spine and back.     

There is no Velcro around the neck that would cause a rash.      

There is a swag element: they are considered cool and hence a favorite for professionals. 

 

Draw Backs of a Chest Zip Wetsuit  

For people with broad shoulders it is harder to put on because it has a smaller hole to get into a chest zip wetsuit.   

It is comparatively more expensive than a back zip suit.  

There will be flushing if the suit does not fit well.   

It has no Velcro: a poor fit will result into restriction around the neck.     

 

Benefits of a Back Zip Wetsuit

It has less restriction around the neck  

It is easier to put on because it has a bigger hole to get into.  

The adjustable Velcro strap results into an enhanced seal around your neck.  

Compared to a front zip suit, a back zip wetsuit is tough and durable.      

 

Draw Backs of a Back Zip Wetsuit     

The Velcro strap rubs against your neck and can cause rash.   

There is tendency of water to flush because of the bat wing  

In case the zip malfunctions, you will require assistance to unzip it.   

The suit is less flexible thus it makes maneuvering and paddling to be more tiring.    

 

Tips on Zip Care  

Kinks that occur next to your zip might cause snagging when you open or close it. In case this happens, don't attempt to force the zip because it may pull the slider off the teeth and even tear the neoprene material.     

Regularly clean your zips after use to prevent accumulation of salt deposits which will accelerate their rusting.     

Lubricate the zips to reduce friction between the slider and teeth: use bee or candle wax.        

 

Which Suit to Select? 

For learners at a scuba center, a back zip wetsuit is the best choice for diving lessons because it is more tough and durable than a chest zip which would be torn by inexperienced scuba divers. Intermediate and professional surfers should go for chest zip wetsuits, because its flexibility is suitable for extreme water sports.   

 

Conclusion 

Each scuba wetsuit having many advantages, the buck stops with you to weigh the pros and cons of both before deciding which one is perfect for your scuba diving requirements.

Liz H.
Liz H.


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.


Also in Buy4Outdoors Blog

Differences between a Wetsuit and a Drysuit
Differences between a Wetsuit and a Drysuit

by Liz H. July 27, 2019

To avoid the danger that arises from excess loss of heat from our bodies, it's important to be equipped with the right swimming or diving equipment. This is the reason why wearing an exposure suit be it a wetsuit or drysuit is an unquestionable requirement. The body temperature changes in response to the temperature of the surrounding. When we dive in cold water, the temperature of the body reduces. An exposure suit helps the body retain its warmth when underwater and also protects the skin o...
Read More
2019 Cold Water Wetsuit Buying Guide
2019 Cold Water Wetsuit Buying Guide

by Liz H. July 14, 2019

A wetsuit is something you would want to get the specifics right when you go shopping. Wetsuits are worn by surfers and divers to keep their body warm when they are surfing, snorkeling or scuba diving. You need a cold water wetsuit for cold weather. There are things you need to know so that you get the specifications right and buy a good wetsuit. There are several types of wetsuits. There are those that have short sleeves while some are full length. Here are the factors to consider w...

Read More
Congratulations to Our June Wetsuit Giveaway Winner!
Congratulations to Our June Wetsuit Giveaway Winner!

by Liz H. July 03, 2019

Congratulations to Steve from the UK, the winner of our 2019 June Wetsuit Giveaway. Steve has won his choice of MYLEDI 3MM Cool Formal Style Tuxedo Wetsuit from Buy4Outdoors.com.
Read More

Enter for a Chance to Win a Free Wetsuit