Tuesday, September 12, 2023

How To Get Rid Of An Old Fiberglass Boat

The Future Of Boat Recycling

One Way to Dispose of a Fibreglass Boat

The cross-linking of polyester and fiberglass is what makes boat hulls so strong. However, this also makes it extremely difficult to separate the components for recycling. While it could be shredded and used as filler, this solution isnt ideal. In a collaboration, Norwegian recycling company Veolia, SINTEF Materials and Chemistry, and several other companies joined together to see if they could figure out a way to recycle old ship hulls. After a significant amount of research, SINTEF has created a way to separate the polyester and fiberglass at impressive rates.

While the exact process isnt shared, it goes something like this: the fiberglass/polyester hull is soaked in a material at a high temperature. The chemical mixture dissolves the bond, making it possible to then recycle. The process isnt perfect yet, but this is a huge step toward recycling old boats rather than sending them to a landfill.

Some boating manufacturers have taken a hint from the auto industry and begun to design their boats with recycling in mind. While small steps like this dont solve the current issue, they are improvements worth applauding. As the boating industry continues to search out more sustainable solutions, we should begin to see new options appear across the U.S.

Feature image courtesy of Adobe Stock

All Good Things Must Come To An End

Countless boats have been abandoned across the province of Ontario in backyards, storage yards, and farm fields. If left untouched, these abandoned vessels contaminate terrestrial & marine environments , impact the aesthetics of facilities & areas where they have been abandoned, and pose a safety risk to individuals that approach the vessel.

As a boat owner, you are responsible for the proper disposal of your vessel. Boating Ontario has compiled a list of businesses in the province that offer boat disposal services.

Some businesses offer full-service disposal including pick up, transport, salvage & disposal, others offer partial service including one or more of the above services.

Please contact and work directly with these organizations to make arrangements to meet your needs.

Landfills Boat Recycling & Disposal Solutions

If you have questions that are not addressed below, please send us an e-mail at and we’ll find the answer for you!

What Does Boat Removal Cost

There are some companies that will remove your old boat for free. While free junk boat removal services do exist, they are often-times not a safe or environmentally friendly option. We carry liability insurance, which protects you in case of any damage to your property while removing your boat.

While some boats DO have valuable parts in them, they need to be torn apart to get those parts. The fiberglass debris that is left over needs to be disposed of properly. We have cleaned up many sites that other companies left the hulls of boats out to rot, causing environmental damage.

The average cost to dispose of a 17 boat in Northeast Pennsylvania is around $950. That includes all of the transport, dismantling, recycling, and disposal costs associated with getting rid of that old boat. It is cheaper and easier than trying to do it yourself!

A+ Enterprises not only recycles as much as possible from boats, but also ensures every boat is properly disposed of once it is time to junk it. With that said, every boat removal job is a little different. Give us a call so we can work out the best price on boat removal for you!

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Where Do Fiberglass Vessels Go When Theyre Past Their Useful Lives Until Recently The Landfill An Innovative Recycling Business Could Change All That

“Dead” fiberglass boats are finding new purpose as a fuel source for the cement industry.

When a southwest Florida law enforcement officer determines a boat is derelict or abandoned, that boat joins the ever-growing list on Justin McBride’s desk. Executive director of Florida’s West Coast Inland Navigation District , McBride checks his list of companies precertified to remove the derelict vessel, and a bid is placed. If the vessel is fiberglass, it’s hauled, towed, scrapped of valuable parts, and with no other options dumped in a landfill.

The cross-linked polyester and fiberglass composites of the fiberglass hull, ideal for strength and durability for a lifetime on the water, are not biodegradable and will sit in the landfill for centuries. “We’ve looked into recycling,” McBride says, but the local recycling facilities aren’t interested. It’s cost prohibitive.

American industry is also looking for a solution. Large marinas need to get rid of multiple dead boats manufacturers are trying to move toward zero-waste products and closing resource cycles. The car and airline industries are working toward fiberglass recycle during the design stage. Even individuals with old hulls on their property face challenges depending on size and situation, boat removal and disposal can cost upward of $10,000.

They Will Cut It Up And Part Out The Engine With Its Parts

How to get Rid of a Fiberglass Boat * Recycling Junk DOs ...

Then take off all of the other parts that are valuable to them to sell off.

This is something that you could do as well if you would like to. Take off all of the metal, rod holders, cleats, T-top, bow rail and everything else that is aluminum or metal and a recycling place will pay you for it.

Then you could also try and sell these items as well. That is if you would like to take a long time to get rid of the boat. Sure, you will get more money out of it, but it will take a lot longer to get rid of.

You will still then be left with the hull that has to make it to the dump, one way or another. You can pay someone to haul it off or you can load it up yourself and take it to the dump. That is if you have the trailer, truck and time to do all of this.

The scrappers will take it for free usually because they get the value out of being able to part out the boat and engine. Otherwise, there is no incentive for them if you have removed all of the valuable items.

Then you will be stuck paying them money!

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Where Can You Dispose A Fiberglass Boat

In states and cities where boating is common, you should be able to find a vessel turn-in program that offers to take your boat off of your hands if you find that it no longer serves its purpose.

Again, these services are pretty limited since theres no market for them in some places. But if youre in these areas, then you should be able to access the service:

The Easiest Old Boat Removal Option

If you have tried these 3 options or decided they are not worth the time or risk, A+ Enterprises is here for you. We are Eastern Pennsylvanias largest and most reputable boat removal service.

Our company takes care of your boat from start to finish. Regardless of the condition of your boat or trailer, we have a solution to remove it and properly dispose of it for you.

If your boat is untowable, we have rollback rucks to haul the boat and trailer on to safely get it back to our processing facility. From there, we will remove any recyclable materials from the boat. Finally, your boat hull will be demolished and properly disposed of in a landfill.

This is much better for the environment than letting your old boat sit around leaking oil and collecting water.

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Examples From Across The Pond

Coastal Europe has challenges similar to Rhode Island’s, with limited amounts of high-premium land and thousands of end-of-life fiberglass boats. Norway, a country with a long coastline and thousands of decommissioned boats, is challenged by the fiberglass problem. The Norwegian recycling company Veolia, along with SINTEF Materials and Chemistry and other regional partners, developed a chemical process to separate a boat’s polyester and fiberglass, allowing both parts to be reused.

Some European governments are considering limitations and bans on landfills and dumps. Germany has restrictions against disposal of composite waste in its landfills. In 2018, France enacted an eco-tax for the disposal of end-of-life boats to stem France’s rising costs of dismantling and recycling them. As of 2018, China, once the consumer of the world’s trash, is no longer accepting U.S. recyclable waste.

How To Recycle A Fiberglass Boat

Getting Rid Of Old Screw Holes In Fiberglass

Recycling your boat can possibly result in some financial gain if you an get all the good metal bits off it and cut up all the worthless fiberglass. You can either recycle your fiberglass boat yourself, or find somewhere else to take it.

Lets start off with the DIY method.

Step 1 Drain all fluids

Like any mechanical device, there are lots of toxic fluids required to make it run, these can include fuel, oil hydraulic fluid, and other liquids. You will need to first drain all of this into drums.

Do not mx the fluids into one drum as worst case you will create some exothermic chemical reaction or could get a tongue lashing from the people at the hazardous waste disposal facility.

Always dispose of any hazardous fluids through the official channels.

Dont be that person that dumps chemicals into water ways and municipal drains the knock-on effects of your actions contribute to devastating environmental damage.

If your boat is large you may have sewerage tanks on it as well. I dont recommended you try to clean this yourself, unless you are a sucker for punishment and looking at getting some nasty disease relating to handling sewage!

Step 2 Remove all equipment and gear

Once all the fluids are removed you can begin by disconnecting your battery from the boat. This is to ensure that you do not get any unwanted shocks while removing any other electrical devices.

It is also important to note which components are worth salvaging.

Step 3 Cut the boat up

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Take It To A Landfill Site

One option is to simply take it down to your local landfill site, but make sure you first phone ahead before taking the boat. There are usually a lot of rules for dumping and disposing of fiberglass boats, and you may be required to first remove all toxic fluids from the boat before taking it to the landfill.

Taking to a landfill site can be expensive, but might be your only viable disposal option,

They will then proceed to deconstruct the boat with whatever heavy equipment they have on hand if you have fond memories of your boat you may not want to witness this part!

There will also be a charge for taking the boat and if this is too much you can then move onto the final option below.

Two Common Boat Junkyard Scams:

Delayed Payment: Never agree to deliver your vessel and accept payment later. Get an agreement written down with terms of payment. Some companies will try to get your vessel and then renegotiate the price with you after it is no longer in your possession.

Your Boat is Worthless: They may try and tell you that your vessel is worth nothing. This is just a negotiating tactic to get it at a cheaper price. Its IMPOSSIBLE for it to be worth nothing to a junk yard. Remember they will sell the parts off if it and whatever is left will sell for scrap.

Also Check: Pencil Tracing Of The Hull Id Number

Give The Boat Removal Experts A Call

If you are located in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area and need an old boat removed from your property, feel free to give us a call! A+ Enterprises Junk Removal is the junk hauling company that can make your boat disappear.

By simply sending us a picture and description of the boat, we can give you an upfront cost to dispose of it. From there, we can make an appointment to get rid of that old boat! Our crew of professional junk haulers know exactly how to get rid of your old boat. You can book a free estimate by submitting your information below or by calling us at 570-373-9996!

Boat Salvage Yards Guide

How To Get Rid Of A Boat: Disposing An Old Boat!

Maybe you had a seamanship disaster and your boat sunk, maybe you ran E15 fuel through the engine and ruined it forever, or maybe the years have taken a toll and your boats simply all worn out. If it doesnt have enough value to sell on the open market, it might be time to contact your local boat salvage yard and find an environmentally friendly way to dispose of it. We mention the environmentally friendly part right up front, because the idea of abandoning or sinking a boat doesnt just run afoul of the law, its also a serious environmental hazard. Fuel tanks, chemicals, and batteries all need special treatment, and abandoning or sinking a boat intentionally shouldnt ever so much as enter the mind of any responsible boater.

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Places To Junk A Boat In California:

California has similar places to junk boats as those in Florida.

These are commonly located in coastal cities.

Some options include:

  • Plastics
  • Other loose trash

Because of these possible environmental hazards, you will not want to junk your boat in an improper way.

This is not only dangerous to the environment, but it is also illegal and you get a few thousand dollars in fines in addition to the cost of removal and demolition.

Should There Be A Sales Tax On Buying A Boat

The idea of a sales tax is supported by Phil Horton, the RYAs environment and sustainability manager, who sees it as part of a broader picture.

We need to consider the issue of extended producer responsibility, he says. Boat manufacturers need to think about the long-term impact of what they are doing and contribute to the boats eventual disposal. Its like batteries: you can take any make of battery to a recycling centre because manufacturers are required by law to join the Battery Compliance Scheme and pay for old batteries to be recycled.

Elsewhere in the world, governments are taking a more proactive approach and dealing with the growing problem of abandoned boats. In Canada, the government has paid to have derelict boats removed from its coasts. In 2018, the Swedish government provided r300,000 in subsidies to scrap 500 boats under 3 tonnes free of charge, providing the owners paid for transportation costs.

But France seems to have found the best solution. Thanks to new rules introduced in 2019, owners are required to pay an eco tax when they register their boats which is obligatory and the funds generated are used to scrap old ones. As in Sweden, all the owners have to do is have the boat transported to an approved recycling centre.

So far, the British government has taken a lackadaisical attitude to the problem, but the growing interest in environmental issues and in particular about plastic pollution is likely to change all that.

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How To Dispose Of Used Boats

Consider the advice of Harbor Salvage, which offers boat disposal services in the Chesapeake Bay and surrounding areas: If you think your boat has any value, your best choice is to sell it. If you think it has no value left, or youve tried to sell it and have not been able to, then contact us. Or consider the offer from Trashcan Willys, which removes junk boats in New England and charges for boat removal: If there are any items of value that go with the boat, they may choose to discount the price of hauling the boat away. Some other outfits, like BoatDump.com, will remove a boat for free or pay cash for some boats 1995 or newer, but then charge fees based on missing boat parts that would be of salvage value, such as engines or drive units.

How We Dispose Of Boats

How To Clean Your Fiberglass Boat Hull and Remove Water Stains

Properly disposing of a boat is important. Some people will do terrible things just to get rid of a boat such as sinking it in a lake or river, throwing it in the woods, or trying to burn it! The only proper way to dispose of a fiberglass boat is to take it to the landfill to be safely and responsibly disposed of.

We salvage as much as we can off the boat such as the engine and trailer frame for scrap metal. This keeps as much out of the landfills as possible. These engines & trailer frames will then be reused in other boats, to keep them from getting junked as well. This is the most environmentally friendly way to dispose of old boats.

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Leave It On A Landfill Site

Those who want to get rid of their old boat immediately can consider dumping the boats in a local landfill site. But, for this, release the toxic fluid from the boat first. The staff of the landfill site will deconstruct your boat finally. If you are not okay with this option, you can always go recycling your old boat.

How Do Boat Salvage Yards Work

Boat salvages purchase wrecked vessels that are worth less then the repair costs. They sell any remaining functional parts for use in working boats. They get their inventory from various sources including private owners, insurance companies, auctions, and the government. Some provide dismantling services and work closely with scrap yards and recyclers.

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Drain It Of All Fluids

That includes everything like fuel, oil, coolant, and whatever else that your boat has inside. These toxic fluids need to be disposed of separately, and will not be accepted with the rest of the boat if youre eyeing to recycle the fiberglass material.

One thing to keep in mind when draining the fluids is that you shouldnt mix them together. This could produce dangerous fumes that could be potentially toxic. Whats more, this could earn you a well-deserved reprimand from the folks at the hazardous waste disposal facility.

For bigger boats, its also possible that you might have a sewage system on board. For the love of your own health and wellness, avoid draining the sewage on your own. Hire a professional to get the job done and make sure you dispose of the waste properly.

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