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Old 10-12-2019, 22:30   #1
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How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

Looking for tips on how to prevent mold from forming in the hull/walls and any advice to keep the interior smelling good.
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Old 11-12-2019, 02:34   #3
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

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Looking for tips on how to prevent mold from forming in the hull/walls and any advice to keep the interior smelling good.
One word answer, VENTILATE!
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Old 11-12-2019, 02:50   #4
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

First, have a boat without hidden areas. No wooden paneling you can't get behind to clean. No hull liner pans. Have access to the hull everywhere inside. Paint the entire hull glossy white inside and do periodic inspections. If you see any dirt or mold, sponge it off.

Second, if you have some areas that get moldy all the time, sponge it with a healthy amount of Borax. No mold will ever grow in a spot that has a Borax film on it.

Also, make sure you have good ventilation to keep fresh air in the boat. There's nothing mold hates more than fresh, dry air.

Note, air conditioning works even better than ventilation. Very dry air.
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Old 11-12-2019, 06:11   #5
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

it's the humidity that causes mold and mildew. ventilation does not do much if the air is not dry. interior wood should be varnished or painted so it can be wiped down. fabrics can be treated with febreze. dehumidifiers can work wonders.
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Old 11-12-2019, 07:20   #6
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

Amen on Gonesail's wisdom. Ventilation can mean getting more moisture into the boat, and does in our case. At the dock we use a small cheap dehumiditfier from Amazon with a tube run from the collection tank into a sink. Therefore, we don't have to empty the tank each day. It works. Underway, the various sources of heat seem to do the job.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:02   #7
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

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ventilation does not do much if the air is not dry.
This is true, but cold air is always dry.

It really helps to understand the physics.

Our bodies fool us into believing cold air is damp. It is actually dry. Cold air even if it has 100% relative humidity does not contain much moisture. The physics is quite simple, but it defies our common perception and belief. So a little like discovering the earth is round not flat it can be difficult to understand. Our eyes tell us the earth is flat and our skin tells us cold air is damp, but these are both wrong.
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Old 11-12-2019, 08:39   #8
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

Personally I don’t feel you can prevent mold on a boat. There is always places that stay damp and get no ventilation. But if you find and clean the hidden spots and spray it with mold presentation treatment it seems to last a while.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:17   #9
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

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Looking for tips on how to prevent mold from forming in the hull/walls and any advice to keep the interior smelling good.
Add as much copper as you can, copper will kill the bacteria..
https://www.csemag.com/articles/anti...-improve-hvac/
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:28   #10
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

Ventilation of every cabin is a must, but I would add that the bilges should be bone dry too. Not only will bilge water help to add moisture to the atmosphere, but it will also add smell to clothing and the general atmosphere.
As the winter progresses, the moisture from the hull sides will likely add more water into the bilges.
I notice the difference when I have spilt some water into my bilge particularly at the end of the season when I am draining engine water and checking antifreeze. The damp smell pervades in the boat and my clothes start to smell which I notice when I get home!
Wooden boats are the worst for this.
I have noticed that many of the Taiwan GB lookalikes have smelly interior and dampness as they do not fit enough or any dorados on the deck for each cabin.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:31   #11
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

One home remedy is to mix a quart of hot water and add 2 parts borax, 2 parts baking soda and 1 part TSP. I think I've read a teaspoon is the right amount for 1 quart. I've also seen the formula with the same ingredients but with 2 parts TSP and one of the other ingredients as the one part. Can't remember which.

A separate observation concerning humidity. I find that living aboard here on the Chesapeake that I need a Humidifier rather than a dehumidifier. I keep the boat at around 60% relative humidity with a temperature in the low 60's F. Right now the heat pump is doing a good job and I can go to electric heaters and even a vented propane unit should the need arise. I do keep the dorade vents open unless we get single digits. Also using kanberra gel.
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Old 11-12-2019, 09:56   #12
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

The other good cleaner is white viniger used neat on a sponge or cloth to wile away ang mould.
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Old 11-12-2019, 10:02   #13
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

Formaldehyde gas bags really work. No mold any where in the boat after 5 months of storage... no ventilation needed. Also kills insects. I only wish I had used them in deck lazarettes: everything was covered with mold. Starbrite NosGuard also works.

https://www.smsdistributors.com/prod...ew-musty-odors

http://www3.epa.gov/pesticides/chem_...3-20121221.pdf
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:29   #14
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

"but cold air is always dry."

Noelex, your general point is well taken, and surely if you get air temperature below freezing, it can't hold water as water.

But "cold" is a relative term. Outside my window it's 15 degrees C, cold by our standards, and misting. The air can carry about 15 grams/cubic meter, half what it can carry at 30 degrees C, but still pretty capable of supporting mold.

Cold also is changeable, so one day you've got a cold desert and the next it's warmer but wetter, and Pallantejm needs to keep the mold out over the seasons.

I guess I'm questioning the blanket absolute.
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Old 11-12-2019, 11:45   #15
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Re: How to keep mold out and the hull smelling good

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"but cold air is always dry."

Noelex, your general point is well taken, and surely if you get air temperature below freezing, it can't hold water as water.

But "cold" is a relative term. Outside my window it's 15 degrees C, cold by our standards, and misting. The air can carry about 15 grams/cubic meter, half what it can carry at 30 degrees C, but still pretty capable of supporting mold.
For growth of mould it is the relative humidity that is important.

If you ventilate with colder air, the relative humidity of the air will drop as it enters the warmer boat.
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