How Often Should I Clean the Hull of My Boat?

How Often Should I Clean the Hull of My Boat?

April 29, 2020

An important part of being a boat owner is making sure you keep your boat clean and in good working condition so you don’t have to put extra money into otherwise avoidable repairs and maintenance. While it’s relatively easy to keep up with cleaning of your boat’s interior and some of the more easily accessible exterior surfaces, hull cleaning is an entirely different beast. Because it can be a more challenging process than other types of boat cleaning, you might be wondering how long you can get away with going between hull cleanings.

There are a variety of factors to consider here. Here’s a quick overview of what you should know about the frequency with which you’ll need to clean boat hulls in Fort Lauderdale, FL.

Cleaning the hull

It is a misconception that frequently cleaning your hull can cut down on the amount of time your anti-fouling paint will last. In fact, frequent cleaning with the right practices and cleaning products can result in your anti-fouling coating lasting longer than it otherwise would.

If you’re going to extend the maximum life of your anti-fouling paint, you need to prevent it from getting so dirty that it’s unable to be cleaned with soft cleaning media. On average, most serious boat owners will have their hulls cleaned every three months, but that might be too much time to avoid dirt sticking to the surface, and may require you to have divers cleaning the boat with something more abrasive than you might otherwise like. The more abrasive the tool used for scrubbing, the more likely it is there will be paint scrubbed off, shortening its lifespan. You can expect a bottom job that is cleaned four times a year to last about two years.

However, when you consider how much you invested in your bottom job in the first place, it makes sense to engage in more regular cleanings to ensure it lasts as long as possible. This means if you’re able to get your hull cleaned every two months instead of every three, it will result in a longer lifespan, because it allows the diver to use the softest pad possible when cleaning the hull, cutting down on the amount of abrasion and potential impact on the painted surface.

Another reason to engage in more frequent hull cleanings, beyond just ensuring your bottom job lasts for as long as possible, is that there will be fewer impacts on the environment. When you use more abrasive pads, more copper gets released into the water because more of the surface gets removed. In addition, staying on top of regular hull cleaning improves performance of the boat under both power and sail, cutting down on fuel consumption and carbon emissions—just one more way you can help the environment with regular hull cleaning.

To learn more about cleaning boat hulls in Fort Lauderdale, FL, we encourage you to contact the team at Starboard Yacht Group LLC today. We look forward to answering any questions you have about our services!

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