Boat antifouling is necessary to keep the vessel in top form. But nobody is really sure what measures are sufficient and which solutions offer the best value. Some of the options are expensive, others complex, some of them are simple and cheap. Is an ultrasonic antifouling system worth it? Do the antifouling paints do the job? It’s hard to say definitively – the options are there, but the choice is left to the owners.
Antifouling coatings and paints
Before electronic antifouling systems and other modern solutions, the choice was simple – just go for the coatings. Antifouling coatings were by far the most popular choice in the 20th century and still remain a key component of comprehensive antifouling protection today. But there are many problems – paints are toxic, they don’t last long, can affect the performance, even the costs add up. Not to mention constant maintenance and overhauls required to ensure the best results. It seems simple in the beginning, but it’s not so in the long run.
Modern electronic systems offer a better experience for most owners. While coatings are simple in the beginning, an ultrasonic antifouling system will demand a bigger investment of both work and money to start. The kit is not that hard to install, but still, there’s work to be done or a professional to be paid. In the long run, though, an ultrasonic antifouling system will work even unsupervised for years to come. Just check the control panel every now and then, but if the system is set up properly, electronic antifouling should work on autopilot.
The simplest option with the worst result
The simplest option? Just leave the boat exposed to the elements! This solution is suitable for short term, or if you just don’t care about your boat. It’s the cheapest, as well.