12 Best Bilge Paint 2024: Do They Matter? – Beautify Your Boat Easily

Is odor coming out of your bilge? Are you having a hard time cleaning and wiping your bilge?

Then trust us, we can completely understand your frustration. Unpainted bilges are very hard to keep clean and even harder to wipe and clean. Moreover, the unwanted residue causes a bad smell that’s also intolerable.

That’s why it’s an ultimate sailor’s dream to paint their bilge to reduce the cleaning hassle. Besides, the painted bilge also helps to work in the engine area. And most importantly, finding fastenings and small parts whilst working.

Therefore, sailors search for the best bilge paint and finding one is a great success for them. These should help you to get the ultimate pleasant bilge painting experience. So, let’s not waste any more time and dive into it-

Our Top Recommended Products

1. Rust-Oleum Rust Brush On Paint

Rust-Oleum Rust Brush On Paint

Time to say hello to our top pick which is the Rust-Oleum Rust Brush On Paint. Obviously, you can guess this product is the best of the bests that we’ve listed after thorough research. So, why did we crown it as the best?

First thing first, this enamel paint can put a protective layer on wood, concrete, masonry, and metal surfaces. It’s perfectly usable for both exterior and interior painting. But,  what makes it have superior protection?

So, this has an oil-based formula that creates a durable protective coating. Just to add with this, this formula also makes the paint rust preventive. The cherry on the top, this paint is also resistant to abrasion, fading, and chipping.

Oh, did we just forget to mention that it’s corrosive resistant as well? So yeah it has that too. Plus, it can resist corrosion. Besides, it can easily cope with different weather conditions and elements.

Therefore, you can see, this ranked top definitely for its extraordinary performance. Moreover, this protective layer makes this painting a durable one. The lasting protection makes this bilge paint worth every penny. Move on to the outer look and finishing part.

If you’re much fond of a beautiful glossy outlook, we think this should be your pick. It provides a shiny surface with a satisfactory glossy outlook. Now time to talk about the coverage area and the quality. So, no arguments about the coverage superiority. It’s top-notch in one word.

A half-pint of this paint can cover up to 22 square feet of area and it’ll take only 2-4 hours to dry. But nothing comes as a complete blessing obviously. You have to keep some things in mind while using this paint. That is the chemicals this paint is made of can create toxic fumes.

Therefore, make sure to have enough ventilation while painting your bilge with it. Moreover, a high concentration of this paint can be harmful as well, so take some safety precautions.

  • Creates a durable protective coating
  • Top-notch quality of the coverage
  • Rust and corrosion protective
  • Resists abrasion, fading, and chipping
  • Easily copes with extreme weather conditions

  • Glossy finishing might get fade after some years
  • Might create toxic fumes and harmful residues


2. TotalBoat Epoxy Based Bilge Paint

TotalBoat Epoxy Based Bilge Paint

Let’s introduce our second product from the brand TotalBoat. This one is an epoxy-based bilge paint which is cost-effective. This one can also be used for engine rooms, lockers, and bulkheads because of its hard durable coating.

Due to this hard coating, it can primarily be used as a leak coating before severe damage takes place. Moreover, the colors can hide some light damage signs. Next comes the easy application and the oil-repellent coating. So, this is epoxy-based and can be applied easily with a roll applicator even without professional expertise.

This paint has this unique feature that is its non-peeling and nonstaining quality. Must have to agree that this is something a sailor would want from his bilge paint.

Besides this paint doesn’t lift or crack in long-term use. Hence, user-friendliness is praiseworthy, as you can see. Also, its high gloss finish retains grime, grease, and oil. Therefore, keeping the bilge clean becomes much easier.

Another thing about this product is its opacity. This particular paint offers a very nice opacity and glossy finishing. One last thing that you should know beforehand is the optimum condition you’ll need during painting it. This particular paint needs a temperature between 50 to 95 degrees Fahrenheit.

Lastly, the relative humidity can be anything within 0-90%. In cases of layering on top of the previous layer, you might need to sad the inner one. So, keeping 100-150 grit sandpaper will be wise.

  • Resistant of crack, lift, peel and stain
  • Hard coating durability even protects from leaks
  • Prevents grease and oil
  • Cost-effective and easy to apply

  • The pre-paint preparation might be a hassle


3. Interlux Bilgekote

Interlux Bilgekote

Moving forward to our next product on the list from Interlux. Just like our previous product, this one is also hard wearing coating. This one is also perfect for bilges, lockers, and bulkheads. But this product has some uniqueness that made it stand out from others. This one can ensure a high opacity throughout the whole coverage.

So how does opacity help? Firstly, it provides a glazy finishing that gives your bilge a soothing outer look. Secondly, It hinders the light from passing through the colors so it remains intact for a long time. Therefore, it helps the paint have better long-lastingness.

Besides, this product resists fumes, fuel, and oil. Hence, the regular sight of fume marks on bilge and engine adjacent areas won’t be visible. Another fact that makes it very user-friendly is its capability of holding up. That too without any extra hardener.

This is utterly important for any paint. Otherwise, the paint might crack and fall, which can even lead to mishaps.

Lastly, as a matter of fact, this product contains some harmful chemicals. Therefore, having aids and safety measures will help you big time to keep you safe. Otherwise, toxic chemicals and materials can harm your body.

  • High opacity gives a soothing finish
  • Long lastingness makes it user friendly
  • Fume and fuel resistant
  • Good for a protective coating

  • Contains harmful chemicals
  • The price might seem high for some users


4. Rust-Oleum Marine Topside Paint

Rust-Oleum Marine Topside Paint

We are near the end, and it’s time to introduce our fourth product to the list. This one is from Rust-Oleum as well. Well, you might be wondering why we have two products from the same brand?

We’re not trying to promote them, rather we find their quality and consistency very reliable. Therefore, we’ve two of their babies that will suit your needs just perfectly. So, what made this product stand out from the others? In one word, its UV resisting power makes it a unique one. Besides, it can resist extreme weather conditions.

On top of these, it deserves some extra points for providing gloss retention. This thing helps the bilge from getting extremely dirty or oily. As gloss retention makes the surface easier to clean, therefore it’s really helpful for bilge and adjacent areas.

But you must know the pre-requirements of this product before choosing it. Like the time and weather conditions for setting up. 70 degrees Fahrenheit and 50% relative humidity. Also, using it during rainy days won’t be a very good decision.

So, you must make sure that you’re painting with this one under the mentioned conditions. Otherwise, this might get you in a huge mess even. Another thing that you must avoid if you choose this paint. But what’s that?

That is applying excessively without letting the color dry properly. But on the bright side, it dries up pretty quickly. And lastly, this is super durable that makes the buy worth the money.

  • Resists UV and extreme weather conditions
  • Very good as a primer paint
  • Adhesion is great so durable
  • Retains oils and dirt so keeps the bilge clean
  • Dries up quickly

  • The weather condition might be tough to maintain
  • Adding a thick layer at times makes a huge mess


5. Pettit Paint EZ-Bilge

Pettit Paint EZ-Bilge

Yeah, we’ve come a long way and it’s time to reveal our last product on the list. The last one is the Pettit Paint EZ-Bilge which is a high-performance bilge paint. Even though this is our last product, in our judgment this product is also a good one. Everything that a sailor might want from his bilge paint, he’ll find it all in it.

This product is thick and has a nice adhesion. Moreover, the outlook is very nice, glossy, and smooth. But to get the best outlook from this product you must paint it in a well-ventilated room or in a sun-filled space.

Just like any standard good quality bilge paint this one has a super tough finish. This resists fuel, abrasion, and oil. Therefore, the chances of getting greasy and dirty decrease.

As a consequence, you don’t need to worry much about the cleaning. On top of that, this product has an Alkyd finished formula that can withstand extreme bilge conditions and antifreeze, grease, and gasoline.

It can resist years of abrasion and wear off as well. So why not give some extra credits for this, right? Extra points to this product for being extremely easy to apply with minimum equipment and effort. Besides, the superior quality coverage makes it a good pick for any sailor.

  • Thick and sticky
  • Gives a nice and glazed final outlook
  • Tough coating resists extreme bilge conditions

  • Might take more time to dry than mentioned
  • Needs some improvement in the overall quality


Buying Guide

Best Bilge Paint

Picking the perfect bilge paint for your yacht isn’t an easy job at all. It might get very confusing at times. So to make the long story short for you, here we made this buying guide. It has all the necessary factors that you must focus on when you’re planning to get one. This buying guide should help you in this regard just perfectly.

So, let’s dive into it:


One of the major reasons why a sailor looks for a good bilge paint is protection. You must notice if your bilge paint can resist abrasion, fume, oil, grease, and corrosion. The user’s needs will have an impact on this.

Other than that, if you carry corrosive materials, then better you choose one that is anti-corrosive. Just like that, you have to choose your bilge paint depending on it. Again, if your engine emits fumes then high chances of fume-marked walls. So, picking a paint that’s fume resistant will help you big time.


Painting isn’t something that you invest in your money and labor every day. So definitely you have to find one worth your money. If your paint doesn’t last enough it won’t be a good investment obviously. Therefore, checking the durability of the bilge paint will help you to pick the long-lasting one.


paint boat

Speaking about opacity, a lot of people don’t understand the importance of this clearly. But not even exaggerating a bit, this is one of the most important factors of buying a bilge paint. Opacity has a direct impact on durability. But how?

So, it’s basically a mechanism that doesn’t allow the light to pass through the colors. Hence the outlook becomes glossy. People who are fans of outer look always look for this. But mainly the opacity helps the colors to not get affected by the sunlight. Hence, the color remains protected. Therefore, the longevity of the paint increases.

Weather Pre-conditions

Some paints have their own weather requirements. Some need a certain limit of relative humidity. Others have temperature demands as well. Hence, you must have thorough knowledge about the product’s requirements.

Then choose one that suits your native weather condition. Otherwise, you will end up in a huge mess as the drying up process will be a tough one. So, have some prior knowledge of this before you choose the final product.

Safety Information

Logically, colors contain toxins hence knowing the safety information is the best someone can do. You must know which paints have which toxic materials. So that you can take your precautionary measures accordingly. Otherwise, you might face health hazards that can even harm your respiratory and reproductive health.


Is bilge paint waterproof?

As they’re specially formulated to be used in bilge areas. Henced, they must be waterproof. The purpose of putting this paint is to give a protective and resistant finish. Therefore, bilge paint has to coat the bilge area from water, oil, salt, and grease. Also, add gel coat on your boat.

What can I do with oily bilge water?

Before we start talking about what you should do. Let’s know what you shouldn’t do and that is not pumping the oily bilge oil overboard. Using absorbent pads or sheets should just work fine.

How do you clean a bilge before painting?

The first thing you should do is to absorb the oil or such residues. This is also your prime time to tackle this problem. Then using a wet rug to get rid of the dust and grit will be great. Lastly, wiping the surface with denatured alcohol will put a nice full stop to your bilge cleaning.

How do you get the smell out of a bilge?

Adding environmentally friendly disinfectant can help you to get rid of the waterlogged odor. Another trick is to spray degreaser or cleaner and let it sit for some minutes. Then you can wipe it dry and the smell will get reduced.

What happens if the bilge pump fails?

As the bilge pump is a critical safety device hence its failure can lead to severe consequences. It can fill the hull of the boat with unwanted water. Therefore, to avoid long-lasting damage, this bilge pump should be checked regularly.

What is special about bilge paint?

Bilge paint is a specialized type of paint designed specifically for use on the bilge area of a boat or ship. The bilge is the lowest part of the boat’s hull where water can collect, and bilge paint is formulated to withstand the harsh conditions of this environment.

There are a few characteristics that make bilge paint special. Firstly, it is designed to be waterproof, which is essential for protecting the hull from moisture damage. It is also formulated to be resistant to oil and other chemicals that may accumulate in the bilge area.

Additionally, bilge paint is designed to be durable and long-lasting. This is important since the bilge area can be difficult to access for regular maintenance, and the paint needs to be able to withstand the wear and tear of being in this location for extended periods of time.

Overall, bilge paint is a specialized type of paint that is specifically formulated to protect the hull of a boat or ship from the harsh conditions of the bilge area. Its unique characteristics make it an essential component of any marine painting project.

Yes, in most cases, bilge paint requires a primer before application. The primer helps to prepare the surface of the bilge area for the paint, ensuring better adhesion and a more durable finish.

The type of primer used will depend on the type of bilge paint being applied. For example, if using an epoxy-based bilge paint, an epoxy primer would be appropriate. If using a solvent-based bilge paint, a suitable solvent-based primer should be used.

It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s instructions regarding the type of primer to use, the method of application, and the drying time before applying the bilge paint. Proper surface preparation, including cleaning and sanding the bilge area, is also important to ensure the primer and paint adhere properly and provide the necessary protection.

In summary, while it is possible to apply bilge paint without a primer, it is not recommended for achieving a long-lasting, durable finish that can withstand the harsh conditions of the bilge area.

What color should you avoid in the ocean?

When it comes to choosing colors for the ocean, there are certain colors that should be avoided as they can attract unwanted attention or be mistaken for something dangerous.

The color to avoid is generally considered to be bright, vivid orange. This color can be mistaken for a distress signal, such as an orange life raft or life jacket, which can cause confusion and delay rescue efforts.

In addition to bright orange, it’s also recommended to avoid wearing black or dark colors as they can attract unwanted attention from certain marine animals, such as sharks or jellyfish. It’s also worth noting that wearing highly reflective or shiny clothing can also attract the attention of some marine animals.

When choosing colors to wear in the ocean, it’s generally recommended to opt for muted or neutral colors such as blues, greens, and grays. These colors blend in with the natural environment and are less likely to attract unwanted attention or be mistaken for something dangerous.

Final Words

That’s all we have about the best bilge paint. We really hope this read will take you closer to your perfect one! I mean the most suitable and the one that complements all your needs.

So, this is the time to part ways. It’s your time to paint the bilge with your yacht. Take out your painting brush and start the mission then. Good luck with your coloring game friend.

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