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Anchor Rope Cleaning? More Harm Than Good?

Posted on May 08 2018

Anchor Rope Cleaning? More Harm Than Good?

Anchor rope cleaning can be confusing. There are two schools of thought on the topic of cleaning anchor ropes in general. One school finds cleaning line a waste of time. It’s an anchor rope, and it’s either in the anchor locker or in the water. It isn’t seen in either condition, so why should you be concerned with its appearance? The other side votes for periodic line cleaning. Keeping your boat ship shape and in Bristol fashion is merely taking care of your vessel. Do you need to polish the brass bell or re-varnish the wood? You don’t have to, but pride of ownership often forces even the saltiest sea dog into homely chores like cleaning.

Anchor Rope

What Good Does Cleaning An Anchor Rope Do?

If your anchor rope spends a lot of time in a damp anchor locker, it’s possible that your white line has become bilious shades of green and brown. That, in itself, isn’t harmful, but what lies beneath could be. Heavy mold can conceal deterioration that may weaken your line. The ability to check easily your rode for signs of wear and damage is important in maintaining safety.

If your line builds up a lot of salt, sand and debris, these particles can exacerbate wear. The sharp particles act like tiny teeth, and over time, this can degrade your line fibers.

Does Cleaning An Anchor Rope Cause Harm?

Cleaning your rode won’t cause any harm, but the ingredients you use could. Soap and oxygenated cleaners won’t harm your lines. Fabric softener added to the rinse water makes the line more supple and easier to work with when dry.

However, bleach can degrade the line and should be used only in a diluted form, or it should be replaced with an oxygenated cleaner for stubborn stains.

Fabric softener does not damage the fibers of a line. Fabric softener merely coats the fibers and thereby reduces friction.

Best Methods To Clean An Anchor Rope

If you’re using a washing machine, put your rode in a pillowcase and secure the top. Be sure to remove the anchor first.

If a washing machine is not an option, soak the line in a large tub,

Throw some water and cleaner in the anchor locker and let it soak right there. The water will wind up in the bilge and help clean that grimy compartment.

We probably don’t have rope soap, but stop by our store when it’s time to replace that worn and dingy anchor rode!

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