The dew point at 11Am today was 42f . But outdoor temperature fell to 36f during the night. Boat hulls typically are not insulated. Therefore, the hull temperature can fall below the interior air temp. That equals condensation like a tea glass in summertime.
When at the dock during cold months, plugged in to electricity, we run a dehumidifier. But being out on a mooring ball in St Augustine we don’t have the ability to run a dehumidifier.
Our catamaran, Yacha Fun has a Mr. Heater which we only burn when awake. As a result the interior temperature falls during the night.
Mildew becomes a constant clean up item. Clothing feels damp when taken out of a storage area. Wooden kitchen matches become so damp that the striking-flame dies before the stick can itself burn. Sugar, stored in a lock-seal plastic container, becomes a sugar-block and has to be scraped with a spoon to measure what’s needed.
My portable canvas upholstered cockpit seat with adjustable back has been stored in our port stern berth (converted to storage area). It rested against the painted hull fabric liner. I moved the seat to gain access to open drawers on a stackable storage unit. That area of contact between the seat and the wall had created a mildew spot.
The best prevention is to be where the lower temperature is typically higher than the dew point. That means being further south- to Miami or so.
The idea of being in St Augustine had included me being able to pick up a crewing position and also for Diann to enjoy “fall weather”. Now, however, is the slow season for tourists. The Black Raven pirate boat, for example, didn’t go out for over a week. February is maintenance month for the local schooner cruise boat. So, working to afford to be at a marina slip having electricity is not realistic. Until heading further south, we’ll just have to embrace the condensation.
The story / blog of Yacht A Fun, a Gemini catamaran sailboat, traveling the ICW and east coast with insights to the extended cruising life. Boat Condensation