Posted on November 2, 2015 - by Memphis Istaboa
We’ve been using Barnacle Buster Palm Beach for a couple of years and yes they’re kind of pricey, but going with, “you get what you pay for” logic I never questioned their price or their work. The young fellow who had dived on Istaboa seemed competent and he always showed up like clockwork; once a month.
I did mentally question the frequency of zinc replacements, but not going under myself in murky water, I couldn’t dispute it.
Then while cruising the Exumas I took advantage of the crystal clear water and took a look at the bottom with my own eyes. The job Barnacle Busters had done wasn’t perfect but not bad either. You could tell where they stopped cleaning as well as they should; below the level one could see from above the water. The running gear was okay, not as good as I’ve seen before, but adequate so I thought I would mention these things to the diver the next time they cleaned.
I had a Bahamian friend do a proper cleaning and afterwards I dove down to inspect. The bottom looked very good and I decided to wait another 6 months before painting. The Zincs were adequate and didn’t need replacing.
Then we came back to the States… before I could tell Barnacle Busters to not do a cleaning, they were under the boat. So, I thought this would be a good time to test Barnacle Busters’ integrity so I let the cleaning continue.
When I got the bill, after it was charged to my credit card on file, I was shocked to see that their opinion on the bottom condition was so different than what I had seen with my own eyes — just 4 days earlier.
I contacted Barnacle Busters via email and they never replied. I called and spoke with someone who disagreed with my opinion, but said he would ask the diver and get back to me. He never did and to add insult to injury, they came back, without asking, cleaned the bottom again and charged me. When I called to dispute, I was told that I had not contacted them and because I was on a monthly schedule and didn’t give notice, the charges would remain. I begrudgingly allowed it to stay on my credit card without dispute.
So, needless to say, my opinion of Barnacle Busters is not a good one. We will not be using their services anymore and not only will we not recommend them, we’ll advise against using their services.
Also, they’re no longer allowed to charge to the credit card in their files.