Tom’s Tips About Cleaning Anchor and Chain

By Tom Neale, 5/31/2007

1. The better the mud for holding, the harder it’ll be to clear from your gear. Be glad that your problem is cleaning it up, not trying to deal with a collision or grounding from dragging anchor.

2. If you install a wash down pump buy one that’s designed for the purpose and that has high pressure and volume. Use sea water, not the fresh water from your tanks. You’ll deplete that soon. Install it well and properly. It may be living in a wet and unfriendly environment.

3. Often the mud on the last few feet of chain and on the anchor can be cleaned by dragging it through the water for a moment or two after the anchor’s free from the bottom.

4. But be very careful that the anchor’s well clear of the bottom so it won’t snag as you move and do damage. Take care that neither it nor the chain impacts or entangles with any part of your hull or running gear or the bottom.

5. If you do drag your gear through the water, go very slow and only drag a few feet of chain. More may create too much stress on the windlass and anchoring gear.

6. Moving the boat in a circle will keep the anchor and chain off to the side, lessening the chance of it’s impacting or tangling with the boat.

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