A Brief Guide to Paint the Bottom of Your Boat - Boat Butler Skip to content

A Brief Guide to Paint the Bottom of Your Boat

If you are looking to prevent the barnacles and aquatic life attaching to the bottom of your boat, then you need to apply a fresh coat of paint. But before you start the painting, you have to do the boat bottom painting preparation that includes cleaning, sanding, and priming. After this, you will apply the 2-4 coats of antifouling paint to the bottom of your boat.

If you think that it’s time to paint the bottom of your boat, then you should hire a professional company like Boat Butler to get the best boat bottom painting services.

Now, let’s dive into the detailed process of painting the bottom of your boat:

Priming Your Boat

For this, you need to follow the below steps:

1 – You have to take your boat out of the water.

2 – You have to clean the bottom of your boat. If you see any algae or barnacles, then you should use a scour brush to scrub it off. No need to use soap for washing the bottom of your boat. For removing the stubborn grime, you can use a power washer.

3 – You need to remove the wax sealant if the boat was never painted before. To do this, you need to get a dewaxing solvent from a marine supply store. Just dip the clean rag into the solvent and rub it away with wax.

4 – You should completely remove the previous paint if you see bubbles, ragged chips, and large peeling strips. To scrape off the paint, you should use 2-inch (5cm) hook scraper.

  • During the process, you should place a trap underneath your boat to pick the debris.
  • You should only strip paint beneath the waterline of boat. Don’t scrape paint from topsides of boat.
  • If your boat is at a boatyard, then you can use a power blaster on your boat after taking permission from the management. This tool will be handled by the professionals because it can strip paint very fast. Furthermore, you may ask for soda blasting for fiberglass boat or sandblasting in the case of aluminum and steel boats. As this step needs professional assistance, so it is better to get in touch with Boat Butler to get the service regarding boat painting Cape Cod from the experts. Hire them and leave the rest on them.

5 – You have to scrub the exterior keel using the 80-grit sandpaper. Once you are done, there should be a dull frosty appearance.

6 – Apply the primer to keel using a roller brush. You should use a paintbrush to prime the edges before you fill the middle section with a roller. You need to ensure that there should be an even coating.

7 – Wait for 1 to 2 hours to let the primer dry. After this, you have to use fine-grit sandpaper to sand the primed surface before you are going to start the painting.

Apply Paint to Bottom

How to paint a boat bottom? Now, we will be discussing this process in details:

1 – To prevent water growth and barnacles, you have to buy the antifouling paint. For your information, antifouling paint contains chemicals called biocide. There are three types of antifouling paint that include hard bottom, ablative, and hybrid.

  • Ablative paint is best for slower boats that are frequently used for pontoon boats or fishing boats.
  • Hard bottom paint is best for fast boats. This paint will not wear away easily but is not easy to remove it when you are going to apply the new coat.
  • Next comes the semi-hard or hybrid paint, then you get the benefits of ablative and hard paint. This will be best for powerboats.

2 – Next, you need to stir the paint with a stick. You can utilize the piece of wood or a paint stirrer. You should stir the paint for at least five minutes. Furthermore, if you feel hard chunks at the bottom, then you should press it down using the stick and keep stirring until the paint gets mixed properly.

3 – Apply the paint using a roller on the keel. You need to fill half of the paint tray with the paint. Dip the roller in paint and roll it against the edge of tray for distributing the paint evenly. Moreover, you need to use a paintbrush for filling the small areas. Keep the following boat bottom painting tips in your mind:

  • Don’t do the painting above the waterline. The topsides of paint will need different types of paint.
  • If you want to add more paint to the tray, ensure that you should stir it in the can first.

4 – Note that the first coat should be dry with time you should finish rolling paint. You need to use fine-grit sandpaper and gently sand down the keel of the boat before you are going to add the next coat.

5 – Apply the second coat on your boat. This coat will increase the lifespan of your paint job. Note that some brands may recommend applying 3 to 4 coats. If you are going to do it, then you have to sand the keel between the coat.

6 – Let paint dry for several hours. The drying time may vary depending on the brand that you are going to use. You should read the instructions on the paint can.  

Tips for Maintaining Your Paint

1 – You should clean your keel after every four to six weeks. If you have used ablative paint, then use a hose to spray for removing grime and stains with the sponge.

2 – Note that antifouling paint is specially designed for the boat that is frequently in use. Your boat paint will remain intact more you use the boat.

3 – You should apply the same paint again once in a year.

This was a brief about painting the bottom of your boat. This entire process needs time and patience. If you think you are not able to do it, then you can contact boat painting companies like Boat Butler. The expert workers will paint the bottom of your boat using high-quality paint and the right technique so that paint can last longer. You will get the best quality at an affordable price tag.

To know more about the services, you can call us at (508) 294 6905.

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