Imagine one day you head down to the marina and see an
officer of the Coast Guard—or a similar authority—next to your boat. He
announces that he has to cite you for polluting the water and, as you can see
by observing the oily film next to your boat bilge, he’s right.
The fines for such a violation can be hefty—far more costly
than the miniscule time and effort it takes to ensure that your boat bilge is
running properly. And in order for it to run properly, it has to first be
clean. But it doesn’t have to be an ordeal to get it that way, even if your
boat bilge has gone ignored for a while now. Here are three tips for making
bilge cleaning easy:
Tip #1: Get the Right
Because your boat bilge is one of the key areas in which the
debris and junk from your boat meets up with the water outside, you have to
make sure that your bilge cleaner is environmentally-friendly. If you search
online, you’ll see all sorts of “home remedy” tips for cleaning your bilge.
Although many of these solutions are cheap, they also run the risk of being bad
for the environment and earning you a citation—along with a hefty fine.
We say, avoid that altogether, find the right cleaner, and
buy a whole gallon of it. Our Bilge Cleaner Gallon fits
the bill thanks to its non-foaming, biodegradable formula. This cleaner is also
good for keeping fish and bait wells clean, which also means you’ll get plenty
of use out of it.
Tip #2: Let the
Cleaner do the Work
A frequent recommendation for bilge cleaner is to let it “do
its thing.” In this case, its “thing” is to serve as an emulsifier that breaks
down oil and scum and makes it easy for cleaning. Naturally, if you have any
environmentally unsafe debris that needs to be cleaned out from your bilge, you
should make sure to keep your boat out of the water and use a hose to get that
The cleaner is there so you don’t have to scrub; so don’t!
Instead, let it sit for a while in the water. As it emulsifies, it will loosen
much of the tough grease that’s built up and make the bilge much easier to
clean in a matter of hours. From there, you’ll be able to wipe out much of the
debris and clean the bilge much more simply.
Tip #3: Drain Safely
The question remains: where do you drain a bilge? Dumping
your bilge water down the sewer can be considered an environmental hazard
because of issues like dumping oil—and in many places, it’s illegal. Drain your
bilge into a predetermined bilge container instead, which can then be taken to
a company capable of disposing of this kind of waste.
The materials that gather in your bilge can be a more
serious issue than you might have considered, but if you take the right steps,
use the right cleaners and equipment, and follow our tips, you should have no
problem disposing of your dirty bilge water easily—and safely.