How Antifouling Paints Works


The best answer to this problem is antifouling bottom paint. These paints reduce or eliminate any marine growth that develops on your boat's underwater surfaces. Antifouling paints do this by using biocides (chemicals) that slowly release during the season to repel underwater aquatic life. Most of the antifouling paints use cuprous oxide (copper) combined with other mysterious "stuff" to get the job done. Here are some basics:


These antifoulings are partially soluble. That means that as water passes across the surface of the coating, it wears down very similiar to the way a bar of soap would wear away. The physical action (friction) of the water over the surface steadily reduces the thickness of the paint at a controlled rate, which results in always having fresh biocide at the surface of the paint throughout the season. The paints should be used in high fouling areas. Boats painted with the Copper Pro and Copper Shield series paints can be hauled and relaunched without repainting since the biocides are chemically bound to the paint film and are only active when in the water. The longevity of these coatings is related to the thickness of the paint.Products Copper Pro SCX 67 Copper Pro 67 Copper Shield SCX 45 Copper Shield 45


Ablative antifoulings wear away with use like the controlled depletion polymers but at a much less controlled rate. Ablative antifoulings are affected more by water temperature, salinity and alkalinity than are the controlled depletion polymers and generally wear away faster. They are less expensive than controlled depletion polymers and they provide excellent antifouling protection but they don’t last as long as the Controlled Depletion Polymers Or Controlled Solubility Copolymers.Product Copper Shield 45 UNO


The technical term for these types of antifouling paints is ‘contact leaching’. The paint dries to a porous film that is packed with biocides, which leach out on contact with water to prevent fouling growth. This leaching is chemically designed to release biocide throughout the season, but the amount will steadily decrease until there is not enough biocide coming out of the paint film to maintain fouling protection. Once the biocide is exhausted, the hard paint film remains on the boat. Hard antifoulings do not retain their antifouling ability out of the water and cannot be hauled and relaunched without repainting. One of the main benefits of this type of antifouling is its resistance to abrasion and rubbing. This makes it ideal for fast powerboats, racing sailboats or boats where the owners have the bottoms scrubbed regularly. Most hard antifouling paints can be wet sanded and burnished prior to launch to reduce drag and improve hull speed.Products Copper Pro SCX 67 HARD Copper Shield SCX 45 HARD