PS just did a comparison and several products got favorable mentions. I know the Starbrite Citrus was on the list and thats what I bought to attack the horrible sludge my bilge accumulated over the winter. Its pretty effective stuff and you'll need to wear gloves for the scrubbing.I am new to sailing and wondered what others are using to tackle the grimy cleaning of the bilge. Is there a particular product that is most useful in cutting the grime but that is also safe for pumping out....
PS just did a comparison and several products got favorable mentions. I know the Starbrite Citrus was on the list and thats what I bought to attack the horrible sludge my bilge accumulated over the winter. Its pretty effective stuff and you'll need to wear gloves for the scrubbing.
I added product to the nasty bilge water, scrubbed, bailed out the smuck and then rinsed with fresh water and the bilge was vastly improved. However, I then left some of the cleaner with freshwater to continue working. It will supposedly eventually eat the remaining accumulated grease and oil.
I don't think any of this products should be pumped into the bay though.
Dawn works great on grease, but I have always tossed some in and let it soak. I don't need to let it soak long. If you can let a mix of water and Dawn sit on the bottom that would work, but I don't know about the sides. I think it would work, but you'll want to keep the sides wet with Dawn while you scrub.Will the Dawn work for the nasty grease and oil on the fiberglass in the engine room, too?
I'm thinking I can spray something on the sides and bottom in there, then reach in with a sponge mop or brush and scrub it off, then rinse everything into the bilge and pump it out with my vacuum extractor that I use for oil changes. Does that sound like it will work?
Not sure what regulations you are talking about that apply to my blige. I clearly stated that I don't pump the stuff overboard, going to lengths to dispose of it at the approved facility at the country dump. The issue is more the oily water than the product, which is claimed to be safe for the environment.Even if the product makes the oil "appear" to vanish, it is still there and the regulation specifically forbid using soap/detergents to make oil apear to disapear..
That is why you leave some in the bilge after scrubbing, so it has time to work.There are a few products that claim they can "eat" the oil in the short time it takes to clean the bilge. Bacteria don't work that fast. Common sense. In a matter of weeks, sure, that is possible. Otherwise, without convincing 3rd party proof, it smells of snake oil..
I have no idea how you'd determine if the amount of oil in your bilgewater would wreck a public sewer system and our marina is on a septic system anyway, so you'd just be putting it in the ground water. We just do the "green" thing and take it to an approved disposal location.However, if the amount of oil is very modest (stains and a few streaks) it can go into the blackwater tank for on-shore pump-out. Up to a few hundred ppm oil (as delivered) will not tax the treatment plant.