One lovely thing I gained when I bought the boat was a LOT of crap in the bilge. The entire back end of the boat surrounding the engine box was awash with swirling, brown, sludgy, oily, disgusting water which smelled of stagnation and disinfectant. The engine battery sat loose, three inches deep in it. Nice.


So that obviously had to be cleaned out. My weapon of choice was a fabric conditioner bottle thoughtfully saved for this purpose by Yvette, plus a heavy-duty funnel and a supply of 25l oil containers.

It took about an hour and a half and some incredibly tricky positions to get the bilge ‘water’ out. I’d started with gloves, but I trashed them and they became pointless after the first container was filled.

I found it pretty upsetting that the boat could have been left in this state, with the internal water sloshing against the internal wall of the hull and gradulally starting to erode it from the inside.

By the time I’d finished, I’d scooped 100 litres of the stuff out of my boat. Seriously. She was now sitting with her right side visibly higher in the water and the balance shifted over to the left.

100 litres of bilge.
100 litres of bilge ‘water’
Clean! Ish


  1. Victoria Charleston says:

    Hi Beth,

    How did you get the last of it out? I understand scooping with the bottle to get most of it but how did you get the last of it?


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