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3 Natural, Non-Toxic Solutions To Clean Your Boat Dock

Whether you are renting one at the coast or have one off your lake house, the dock is an imperative part of your boat's function, operation, and value. Unfortunately, maintaining your boat dock can be difficult due to the possibility of water contamination. While surprising to hear, an estimated 5 million acres of lakes and 300,000 miles of rivers and streams are unfit for swimming and fishing. This water pollution may stem from a variety of issues including weathering, environmental concerns, and different pollutants, so ensuring your dock is cleaned in a safe, non-toxic manner is key to preventing further water contamination.

Pressure Washer

In most cases, a high-pressured spray of hot water will effectively remove dirt, debris, and even some growth of mildew or algae from your boat dock. Rent or purchase a light-duty pressure washer, which offers up to 2,000 PSI of water pressure. A higher amount of water pressure may loosen or damage the wood boards of your dock.

Connect the pressure washer to your outdoor spigot and hold the nozzle a few inches away from the dock surface. Start at the bottom of the dock, or nearest the water. Begin spraying the dock using long, side-to-side motions, working your way to the top of your dock.

Sodium Bicarbonate

Sodium bicarbonate, or baking soda, may sound like a harsh chemical, but it is actually a gentle, non-toxic means of removing a thicker buildup of dirt from your dock. When the baking soda combines with water, it begins to bubble and fizz, dissolving away tough dirt and debris.

To clean your dock, add 2 gallons of warm water and 3 cups of baking soda to an outdoor pump sprayer. Shake to mix, ensuring the baking soda dissolves into the water, before spraying a large section of your dock. Allow the solution to sit and soak for 30 minutes before rinsing off with a garden hose or your pressure washer.

White Vinegar

Mold, mildew, and algae growth are common in moist areas, so you may develop these patches of growth on your dock and your boat. Unfortunately, using chlorinated bleach to kill this growth can affect the environment, local waterways, and your health, so removing mold, mildew, and algae in a non-toxic manner is smart.

Combine 1 gallon of white vinegar with every 1 gallon of water to clean your dock. Place in a sprayer bottle and douse on patches of growth. Use a soft-bristled brush to scrub the patches before rinsing away with your pressure washer.

Protecting your dock while protecting the environment is possible. Using these non-toxic solutions, you can clean and maintain your dock in an eco-friendly, effective manner. 

For more help with maintaining or repairing your dock, contact a local dock construction and repair contractor, such as Abbott's Construction Services Inc.