The fouling we’ve seen this Summer is harder and growing faster than I’ve experienced in 15 years. This is bad news for fuel efficiency and boat performance but there are a few things you can do to help. First know the age and condition of your bottom paint. Most boats where bottom paint is over 1 year old we see bb sized barnacles forming back in as little at 10 days. Boats with paint over two years are growing even faster. Even boats with brand new paint are forming small barnacles in 20 to 30 days this year.
Please do not skip cleanings! You can and should expect your boat will be thoroughly cleaned and that the growth will be returning much faster than it did during the winter months.
If this is the case with your boat, please watch your video to see what your boat looked like right after the cleaning vs what she looks like now. If you need to increase frequency of cleaning, we can do that, or you may be in need of a fresh bottom job.
Below are some key info points about antifouling paint:
- The 2 types of antifouling paints are Hard Paint and Ablative Paint
- Ablative bottom paint job is recommended to be performed every 2 years. -The first year it cleans up well and significantly slows the growth from building up. The beginning of the second year its still working but not as effectively and over the course of the year keeps losing its effectiveness.
- If your Ablative paint is over two years old and your vessel is getting quickly fouled it's time for new paint.
- Hard paint is recommended to last 3 to 5 years and can be cleaned more vigorously. It will get fouled quicker than ablative paint but can take the more aggressive cleaning and will last longer.
- The most effective paint jobs are a combination of the two hard paint of one color as the base with an ablative topcoat of a different color. As the ablative paint wears it will show the second color. When that happens its time to redo the topcoat. This type of paint job is expensive but will provide the best protection for your hull and give a clear indicator of when its time for new paint.