Avoiding Fuel Drool Page 2

Maintenance Q & A — July 2003
By Capt. Ken Kreisler

Avoiding Fuel Drool
Part 2: Addressing flaking bottom paint, keeping fenders clean
 More of this Feature
• Fuel Spill Prevention
• Bottom Paint, and more
• PMY Tries... Serious Shine

 Related Resources
• Maintenance Q&A Index

During a recent haul-out I noticed a patch of flaking antifouling paint on the otherwise clean bottom of my boat. What could have caused this, and what can I do to fix it? T.P., via e-mail
Most likely it’s due to inadequate surface preparation; some contaminant—grease, oil, or residue of some sort—was not removed before painting began.

First remove all flaking paint. I suggest using a flexible plastic paint scraper instead of a metal one to make sure you don’t scratch or gouge the fiberglass. A few criss-crossing strokes over the area should remove most of it. Next sand the patch with 80-grit sandpaper to get any remaining flakes, making sure you go about two inches beyond the perimeter of the affected area. Then wipe down the area with a clean rag and paint thinner to remove any sanding residue. To determine if there’s any contaminant present, pour a bucket of water over the area. If it beads instead of sheeting, you need to sand some more. Once the surface is clean and dry, apply two coats of bottom paint.

I’ve got some rather stubborn stains on several of my fenders. I was thinking of using acetone to get them off. Is this a good solution? B.W., via e-mail
While the acetone may get the stains off, it will break down the plastic and leave the surface of the fender sticky or tacky, which will compound your staining problem and shorten the life of your fenders.

You’re better off using a product designed specifically for this purpose. I’ve had good results with products such as Star brite’s fender cleaner, a good-quality hand-held scrub brush, and some arm power. Once you’ve got the fenders clean, keep them that way with a quick cleaning at the first sign of staining.

Need help with a maintenance problem? Write to Maintenance Q & A, Power & Motoryacht, 260 Madison Ave., 8th Fl., New York, NY 10016. Fax: (917) 256-2282. e-mail: ken_kreisler@primediamags.com. No phone calls, please.

Next page > PMY Tries... Serious Shine > Page 1, 2, 3

This article originally appeared in the June 2003 issue of Power & Motoryacht magazine.

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