It is not tough to take care of sails. Adopting certain habits and precautions will help you maintain their shape and allow for them to age without getting any wrinkles!
Before using your new sail, check each piece of deck hardware & rigging that could damage the sail, and cover them with the necessary protection (stanchions, cleats, stays and fittings ...)
Mitigate and predict
During the first sea trips, avoid windy conditions: only go out in medium winds to allow the fabric fibres to settle in to place in a balanced way.
Avoid excessive tension (hoist, trim, battens,leech lines) and limit flapping.
You can increase the longevity of your sail by limiting the amount of sailing under full sail, and by taking care not to exceed the range of use for your sail.
Alizée Palomba Allures Yachting
Loosen and protect
When heading into port, loosely roll, fold, or slab the sails without crushing the fibres.
Take care to protect your sail from the sun and from bad weather (using the cover, bag, lazy-bag, etc.).
Immediately repair any small snags and minor tears: there are many technical solutions and repair kits available from all good boat chandlers. Please contact us for advice or an expert opinion.
We recommend regular rinsing with fresh water: salt does not damage the sails, but it retains moisture and causes corrosion on metal accessories. Any spots of mold, rust, oil, blood and tar can be removed using appropriate products available in boat chandlers, or in hardware stores. For a complete wash, use a pH-neutral products, and use light and gentle brushing.
Winter is the perfect opportunity to thoroughly inspect your sail: check the seams, batten pockets, reinforcements, straps, leech line, etc. Also, check the upkeep of your lazy-bag, spinnaker sock and boat cover…
Take care to secure the leechline and trim, loosen the battens. (Hint: take a note of the batten tensions to find the right setting during the first sail of the following season.) Rinse your sail with fresh water, with particular attention to fittings such as eyelets, batten casings, the head plate, etc. Once the sail is dry, fold or roll before storing in a clean, dry, ventilated place, protected from UV and extreme heat. Never store a wet sail over winter.