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Old 18-05-2014, 06:24   #1
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Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

I will be leaving my 33 ft sailboat for 3 months in SW Florida in summer. How should I prevent mildew?

It will be in a slip with shore power, but must be buttoned up without AC in case of storms.

I will leave all fans on for ventilation.

Any suggestions will be much appreciated.
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Old 18-05-2014, 07:09   #2
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

I had my Hunter 356 in Florida for 4 months last winter, 3 of them in SW Florida. We left the AC on while we were gone, about half the time. We Had no mildew problems. Why don't you want to run your HVAC?
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Old 18-05-2014, 07:17   #3
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pirate Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

If you've an auto bilge pump why not just get a cheapo de-humidifier and have the hose lead into the bilge..
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Old 18-05-2014, 08:21   #4
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

My AC is not installed in the boat. It is a household window shaker than is on the deck and blows in through the overhead hatch. I want to be able to secure the hatch for security and weather so I can't use the AC.
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Old 18-05-2014, 09:25   #5
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

I'm with the boatman. Buy a decent size dehumidifier and have the water drain into the bilge or the shower sump.
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Old 18-05-2014, 13:44   #6
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

Portable dehumidifier is definitely your best bet. I'm in SC so the weather is very similar, and most people use em to prevent mold and mildew.

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Old 18-05-2014, 13:48   #7
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

Anyone have any recommendations for dehumidifier brands and models?
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Old 18-05-2014, 13:50   #8
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

I have never used them, but got very good reports on them from people in Rio Dulce, Guatemala, which is more humid than Florida. SunPac are the ones most used.

Kill mold and mildew
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Old 18-05-2014, 15:01   #9
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

If you can, install the dehumidifier high enough so that it can gravity drain overboard. That way there is no bilge water, no reliance on the bilge pump.

I'd also buy whatever mildew preventive spray you can find locally, and heavily dose the boat before you close it up. PS did a review of them a while ago, several do work well.

Prop up any cushions, etc., so there's ventilation all around them as well.
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Old 18-05-2014, 15:07   #10
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

A solar hatch vent can really make a difference. I left my boat on the hard in Grenada, and twice in Antigua during the hurricane season, and had very little mildew to deal with when we put her back in the water. Wiping down interior surfaces with white vinegar also helps keep mildew at bay.
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Old 18-05-2014, 16:01   #11
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

Humidifier good idea just remember it elm run on 220 your bilge pump will run on battery so you will need to keep your battery charged.

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Old 18-05-2014, 16:54   #12
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

I put the dehumidifier on the counter and it drains into the sink. No bilge pump involved. I think mine came from Sears and has been working for a long time. No need for a marine one. A dehumidifier will make an appreciable amount of heat though so you need a way to let the heat out.
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Old 18-05-2014, 17:12   #13
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

Plus 1 for leaving it on the counter draining down the sink.

I was told to put several open containers of vinegar around the cabins. This is supposed to keep the atmosphere in the boat too acidic for mold. I put one in each living area and engine room (large yogurt or cottage cheese containers) and have left the boat for a month at a time with no issues.
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Old 18-05-2014, 17:21   #14
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pirate Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

[QUOTE=darylat8750;1544177]Plus 1 for leaving it on the counter draining down the sink. QUOTE]

That won't work.. my bucket empties by hand..
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Old 18-05-2014, 17:24   #15
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Re: Leaving boat - How to prevent mildew

[QUOTE=boatman61;1544182]
Quote:
Originally Posted by darylat8750 View Post
Plus 1 for leaving it on the counter draining down the sink. QUOTE]

That won't work.. my bucket empties by hand..

Drill a hole in your bucket and put a barb fitting in
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