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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Türkiye
    Posts
    1,492

    Default Power washer choice?

    My marina are ultra strict about using detergents and there are a couple of clowns around who have set themselves up as the soapy suds detectives and take delight in reporting every bubble. It's difficult enough to get the boat properly clean with just a hose and brush. Some owners use a non soapy chlorine mix but I'm worried this may damage the gel-coat and be even more environmentally damaging than fairy liquid. So I'm thinking about a power washer but wondering if this may also be a bad idea. Will power washing damage the gel-coat? what about the bimini tops? What bar rating should I buy. There are relatively cheap Karcher and Bosch models available here with 100/110/120 bar ratings. All advice appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Portugal
    Posts
    549

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Don't know how well it works but someone old me to use a dishwasher tablet in the water. Low foam but still cleans. Might be worth trying before a jet washer.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2008
    Location
    Scotland
    Posts
    2,051

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by Irish Rover View Post
    My marina are ultra strict about using detergents and there are a couple of clowns around who have set themselves up as the soapy suds detectives and take delight in reporting every bubble. It's difficult enough to get the boat properly clean with just a hose and brush. Some owners use a non soapy chlorine mix but I'm worried this may damage the gel-coat and be even more environmentally damaging than fairy liquid. So I'm thinking about a power washer but wondering if this may also be a bad idea. Will power washing damage the gel-coat? what about the bimini tops? What bar rating should I buy. There are relatively cheap Karcher and Bosch models available here with 100/110/120 bar ratings. All advice appreciated.
    If you decide on a power washer, plain water works very well. Do not put the lance closer than about 10-15cm from the surface being cleaned. Gel coat is unlikely to suffer damage at that distance. Wood and any fabric WILL be damaged by power washing. Avoid. Ours is 140Bar, but has an adjustable strength nozzle.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    The Known Universe
    Posts
    779

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Hey I use a small Karacher no issues on gel coat or on Kiwi Grip , not on teak or fabric , use nozle distance from surface as yourt guide to pressure, there is also Enviromentally friendly washing up liquid , ECO in most super markets , and my detergents and sprays and toilet cleaners are from this brand, so no isusses for the water , but you might have to show the label to the Gestapo
    Flying birds have no master

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2001
    Location
    Larkhall, South Lanarkshire
    Posts
    342

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    I used to buy Karacher but no longer. My last one was basically designed to fail and predominately built of breakable plastic. Perhaps okay for the very ocassional use but have their limitations and can't survive heavy use. I now use an Mac International Atom and find it to be excellent.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Deale, MD, USA
    Posts
    1,637

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by greeny View Post
    Don't know how well it works but someone old me to use a dishwasher tablet in the water. Low foam but still cleans. Might be worth trying before a jet washer.
    Also contains percarbonate (oxygen bleach), which should help with mold.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Location
    up on the moors.
    Posts
    33,141

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by FlyingGoose View Post
    Hey I use a small Karacher no issues on gel coat or on Kiwi Grip , not on teak or fabric , use nozle distance from surface as yourt guide to pressure, there is also Enviromentally friendly washing up liquid , ECO in most super markets , and my detergents and sprays and toilet cleaners are from this brand, so no isusses for the water , but you might have to show the label to the Gestapo

    Gooseba, don't confuse "environmentally friendly" with "biodegradeable". Ecover makes great play on being kind to the environment, and having a "eco" brand name, and gently coloured packaging, biut it still has the same ingredients that are unkind to animal life including simpler eukaryotic organisms such as slime moulds, algae and fungi.

    Heavy fuel oil and plastic are both biodegradeable, given time and the right sort of hungry bacteria, so I suppose they could be described as environmentally friendly.

    If the OP's marina is for real about protecting the environment, they will need to ban hull polishes (especially the nano ones), teak cleaners, paint strippers, etc.

    Here are the ingredients from an ECOVER spray
    <5%: Non-ionic surfactants
    Aqua,
    Alcohol,
    Caprylyl
    Capryl glucoside
    Candida bombicola
    glucose
    rapeseed oil ferment
    Sodium citrate
    Lactic acid
    Parfum

    You are not going to drink that, are you ? So why should little fishes ?
    I think, therefore I am. I am, therefore I sail.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2005
    Location
    Shoreham - up the river without a paddle.
    Posts
    1,166

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    That looks like the formula for a hand moisturiser. No wonder it is so hopeless at cleaning dishes!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2017
    Location
    Türkiye
    Posts
    1,492

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    Quote Originally Posted by sarabande View Post
    If the OP's marina is for real about protecting the environment
    They're not, unfortunately but that doesn't stop them having a raft of stupid regulations. There's a notion in Turkey that you meet best practice by publishing the strictest possible regulations regardless of whether you ever have any intention of enforcing them or if they are even enforceable. The Blue Card scheme is a case in point. It's a complete sham but the authorities keep citing it in PR blurb as evidence of Turkey's commitment to the environment. Nobody talks about the number of raw sewerage outlets flowing into rivers and seas including many municipal discharges. The marina management don't give a fig about detergent but they have to send someone to hassle you when the busy bodies complain. If they don't the busy bodies are likely to complain to the coast guard who are also inside the marina and I don't want to draw them on me.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Ammersee, Bavaria
    Posts
    4,647

    Default Re: Power washer choice?

    I have a €69 Kärcher K2 Basic (110 bar) that lives on the boat permanently. So far it's lasted 5-6 seasons. I'm happy, it shifts the dirt in Spring and then I use oxalic acid mixed up from powder for removing stains - sprayed on from a bottle and best applied when it is warm and there is direct sunlight - once it has done it's job, washing it off with copious amounts of water dilutes it until it is not much different to vinegar or lemon juice in strength. No foaming so no one really knows you are using it. Then polish to seal the surface again.
    The best argument against democracy is a five-minute conversation with the average voter.

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