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Underwater Hull Cleanings – How Often and Why Should I Do It?

Imagine coasting on the blue waters with the fresh ocean breeze carrying a light salty mist providing the perfect relief from the gleaming sun. The Gulf of Thailand is an excellent avenue for exploration and relaxation as well as an important hub for merchant maritime activities and trade in the region.

No matter what kind of ocean-going vessel you choose, whether it’s for business or pleasure, all ships must conduct a pre-sailing check list prior departure. This type of list may include checking the ships rigging and hatches, estimating fuel requirements, watching the tides, loading safety equipment, etc., But first and foremost, you need to check your vessel’s seaworthiness – most notably your ship’s hull!

Forming the outer structural shell of your vessel, the hull is an integral part of your ship; this is why regular care and maintenance are necessary. Here’s more about hull cleaning:

Why Should You Clean Your Hull?

Fuel Consumption:

The presence of bacteria and barnacles tends to harden over time and become dense. This will add weight to your ship, resulting in drag while increasing fuel consumption and operational costs.

Paint Deterioration:

Untreated bio fouling can prompt permanent damage to your ship’s antifouling paint coating. This will increase biological roughness affecting the hydrodynamic performance.

Early Problem Detection:

Regular maintenance will ensure that you are aware of any problems that might affect your vessel’s speed, power, or overall performance. This also helps avoid hefty treatment costs, ensuring maximum cost efficiency.

Increased Speed:

A clean hull will help your ship glide through the water effortlessly, so whether it’s for personal pleasure or business operations, you’ll always enjoy smooth sailing.

Prevents Engine Problems:

A build-up of marine species can block intakes, which can lead to serious engine problems like overheating. A clean ship will ensure that everything is clear and the engine functions per usual.

How Often Should You Clean your Hull?

We recommend getting your hull cleaned every six months to maintain the efficiency of your vessel. Hull cleanings will also help you gain access to the ship’s underside to determine any problems that require immediate action.


How Do Professional’s Clean Hulls?

There are three standard methods used to clean the hull or boats and ships:

  • High-pressure water: Professionals use ahigh-pressure water jet to remove all algae deposits and marine growth from the bottom of your vessel. This method requires heavy commercial equipment and proper operational techniques as incorrect usage can remove the antifouling paint, causing more damage than cure.
  • Hydraulic/ Pneumatic: Power driven tools using oil pressure (hydraulic) or air pressure (pneumatic) can be successfully used to remove particularly stubborn marine growth. Although sometimes bulky, these tools are extremely versatile functioning in the rotatory or reciprocating fashion and greatly reducing cleaning times.
  • Underwater Brush Kart: A specialized machine resembling a ‘Go-Kart’ fitted with rotating brushes which is driven underwater. The centrifugal movement of the brushes creates a suction that keeps the unit attached to the hull whilst the motorized wheels keep the machine in motion. Depending on the fouling condition, the brushes can be swapped for softer or more rigid bristles to best suit the purpose.
  • Manually: The default method when all else fails! Manual cleaning refers to non-power assisted hand tools. Tools like brushes, chippers and scrapers can be deployed down to the divers to aid in underwater cleaning. While there is no risk of breakdowns, this technique is time-consuming and can be extremely strenuous.


Thailand’s Finest Hull Cleaning Service

Are you looking for underwater hull cleaning services? Thai Subsea has got you covered!

Thai Subsea offers ship services at competitive rates. We’re one of Thailand’s best underwater ship services that offer ship hull cleaning inspection, propeller polishing, subsea welding, and other services at competitive prices. Contact us today for a free quote!