Antifouling Paint

There are two basic bottom paint antifouling systems, self ablative (also called self-polishing) and hard matrix.

Hard matrix bottom paints are based on resins and do not wear with use, each time the yacht is bottom painted a new coat adds to the existing bottom paint thickness. When the thickness is excessive the bottom paint has to be completely removed. The advantage of hard matrix paints is that the smoother surface improves laminar water flow on the bottom hull and that translates into a better fuel efficiency.

Self polishing antifouling paints on the contrary wear with use, releasing the antifouling agents and refreshing its surface. Self polishing antifouling bottom paint has the advantage of not building up over the years.

Using the boat often also improves the overall condition of the bottom as the paint self cleans with the water flow.

It is also easier to maintain by non professional divers as the paint can be refreshed using a scrub pad. On the contrary this bottom paint offers worst fuel efficiency than hard matrix based antifouling paints due to the increased drag.