Maintaining the underside of your houseboat is one of the ongoing duties of being a boat owner. It is unavoidable that barnacles, algae as well as a myriad of greatly creatures settle on the bottom. To prevent against sluggish performance and prolonged corrosion, consider the following methods to clean the underside.
READ ALSO:BOAT PROPELLER EXHAUST TIPS
If the houseboat is within the water and has to be cleaned in this position, you will need a hookah or scuba equipment to clean the bottom. Most houseboats are cleaned easily with a scrubber or scraper. You could also make use of a pressure washer beneath the water surface to clean out copper, fiberglass or wooden houseboat bottoms. It is a much easier and efficient practice to clean the houseboat bottom once it is taken out from the water or propped up during low tide.
Steel or Copper Bottomed Boats
If the houseboat has a copper bottom, pressure washers are a ideal way to clean it. Make sure to first scrape out most of the growth and then follow it up with the pressure washer. Do not use chemicals as else you will not be able to let the water from the washer flow back to the sea. If the growth has been around for a long time and dried up as a result, you would have to use chemicals or sand blaster equipment for a thorough cleaning.
For wooden bottomed houseboats, the cleaning is more hands-on, challenging and physical. For caulked hulls, you should not use excessive pressure and ideally the wooden bottom of the houseboat has to be scraped during cleaning.
For a houseboat with a fiberglass bottom, you should clean the base as soon as the boat comes out from the water. You can use pressure washers but use it at oblique directions while spraying so the water just skims the surface. If you use high pressure while spraying, it could damage the delicate gel coat of the fibreglass.
If the growth has been around for a while and has become encrusted on the houseboat bottom, you require commercial cleaners to get the dirt out. You could paint or spray these cleaners over the growth followed by a pressure wash after a specific duration. Make sure when using chemicals that you do not let the water from the pressure wash to flow back to the sea or river. A good remedy to take out stubborn dirt is a mixture of warm water and tri-sodium phosphate with a proportion of 1 gallon per 1 cup respectively. This solution is known to stop algae stains and algae from houseboat surfaces. Another eco-friendly alternative is to use a mix of 4 parts of Lysol and 6 parts hydrogen peroxide, which you would have to soak over the algae growth for 2 hours followed by a pressure wash.
Sometimes for ingrained stains, you would need to use Muriatic acid. However, since it is abrasive, be very careful. Make sure to use gloves and wear goggles. Never let it flow into waterways because it would pollute the sea.