We have all suffered the woes of water penetration. I certainly have
suffered my fair share. There are four schools of thought on this subject:
1) Use a product to keep water out. These products include Coax-Seal and
tape. I have some old-timer friends who seal the outside of their connections
with a silicone product called Welder's Cement available at Walmart. Although
bit messy, it is easy to apply and takes considerably longer than
conventional silicone sealant to set-up; so you can work it. They just smear it
over, and around the connection. IMO it is better that tape, as tape has
microscopic holes, shrinks, and peels. Coax-Seal, is difficult to work with,
hard as a rock, and is nearly impossible to remove.
2) Give the water no place to go. The popular product is Stuf. Dielectric
grease is another option. Stuf dries over time and shrinks, which creates a
vacuum within the connector sucking in moisture.
3) A combination of the two above.
4) Do Nothing
I have tried them all. IMO, and have decided that there is no way to fight
physics and keep the water out. That leaves out # 1 & 3. It is a waste of time
in most cases. My philosophy is to give the water no where to go, and if it
does get into the connector, give it an escape route. That means # 2.
I use dielectric grease as it does not shrink (although it is very icky on
the hands). I apply a liberal dose dielectric grease inside the connector and
do not try to seal the outside. It has been 4 years since I have had a water
problem with any connector (which I suffered from regularly for a long time
with the other methods). The dielectric grease is good for use at least,
through 70 cm.
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