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jnvoss 02-19-2015 08:57 AM

Cleaning Bilge
 
I have a little water and/or oil, etc in my bilge from time to time. Suggestions on how best to clean the bilge. Thanks

RT Firefly 02-19-2015 09:27 AM

Greetings,
Mr. jn. One can emulsify the oil with a detergent (some will suggest Simple Green but I hate the smell so I use Spray 9) and vacuum up the resultant contaminated water with a wet/dry vac and disposing of the guck in an accepted manner. A few good rinses with the garden hose and you should be good to go. Put some oil absorbers in the bilge to trap any further oil.

ranger42c 02-19-2015 09:28 AM

No single thing worked for me.

Used a combination of cleaners (Dawn, Simple Green, Kaboom, Goo-Gone, Magic Erasor, etc.) with a combination of applicators (rags, rags at the end of a flat blade screwdriver, mop, toothbrushes, buffer pads, manual wire brushes and wire wheels on a drill, etc.). Added both steam cleaning (where I could insert the tool heads) and power washing. Everything helped.

Did a section at a time until it was all finally done. Wasn't really horrible in the first place, but I wanted it clean enough everywhere so any new dirt/oil/water source is immediately obvious.

Sounds like in your case you'll need to start first with absorbent material (e.g., Zorb pads) to capture oil... and then you'll want to identify the oil source and fix that.

-Chris

Ronald 02-19-2015 12:47 PM

Recently did a clean up from a small fuel leak. Used hot water and Dawn. Wet vac to pick up the water. Repeated twice and it cleaned up nicely.

Alaskan Sea-Duction 02-19-2015 02:33 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ronald (Post 309437)
Recently did a clean up from a small fuel leak. Used hot water and Dawn. Wet vac to pick up the water. Repeated twice and it cleaned up nicely.

100%:thumb:

funangler 02-19-2015 02:57 PM

The ShopVac with the pump on it so you can pump into a drum make the process go very nicely. Instead of handling a ShopVac full of water and grime.

No Mast 02-19-2015 04:59 PM

You say it's a little water.. I'd put an oil diaper into the bilge to absorb the oil then use a big sponge to mop up the water into a bucket.


PS- If anyone wanted to order a TF shirt time is quickly running out. PM me if interested, don't hijack this thread.

Capt.Bill11 02-19-2015 08:20 PM

If you use a shop vac to suck up oily bilge water, use an oil sorb in place of a filter and put one in the bottom of the vac as well. Makes clean up of the vac easier. As well as disposal of the water in the vac.

CPseudonym 02-19-2015 11:40 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capt.Bill11 (Post 309584)
If you use a shop vac to suck up oily bilge water, use an oil sorb in place of a filter and put one in the bottom of the vac as well. Makes clean up of the vac easier. As well as disposal of the water in the vac.


Great idea and one I'll remember too. Hate cleaning oily shop vacs.

hmason 02-20-2015 08:00 AM

Where do you dispose of a shop vac full of contaminated water? And, how do you transport it? ��

Capt.Bill11 02-20-2015 08:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by hmason (Post 309665)
Where do you dispose of a shop vac full of contaminated water? And, how do you transport it? ��

Depends on where you are located. And whether you want an honest answer or the PC feel good one. :D

psneeld 02-20-2015 09:30 AM

After letting it settle a bit and having oil pads in it and they are still absorbing...there's probably less oil in 10 to 20 gallons of bilge water than somebody washing greasy parts in a deep sink.

If your municipal waster water system doesn't prohibit it...down the drain is one way.

I so e places I lived, the proper disposal of antifreeze was down the drain...they probably figured it was better than to transport with spillage.

seasalt007 02-20-2015 12:47 PM

I have always wondered if soap residue would make a bilge pump's float switch more prone to sticking?

Alaskan Sea-Duction 02-20-2015 04:00 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Capt.Bill11 (Post 309676)
Depends on where you are located. And whether you want an honest answer or the PC feel good one. :D


Yep. Either pour it into a jug and put it in the trash or dump it in the river and rinse you shopVac out with river water.:smitten:

Capt.Bill11 02-20-2015 04:25 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by seasalt007 (Post 309719)
I have always wondered if soap residue would make a bilge pump's float switch more prone to sticking?

Oily sludge is way more likely to cause a switch to stick than soap.

LWW 02-20-2015 04:52 PM

Use to be a product called "Oileater" you could get at Costco. Used it on my bilges all the time. I think you can get it at HD in a small Qt size.Larry


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