December 7, 2015
Quantum Expert Answer
The best way to keep your jib, (or any sail) from developing mildew is to use it. The longer a sail is folded or tightly rolled--particularly if stored wet--the more likely it will be for mildew to develop. Roller-furling headsails left furled and unused for long periods of time are prime candidates. Mildew has long been a problem for sailmakers, particularly since the advent of composite materials. Whereas woven materials "breath," composites consisting of multiple layers are more prone to trapping moisture thereby serving creating an environment for mildew growth. All modern composites used in cruising sails have fungicides added during lamination to discourage mildew growth, but they are not 100% mildew-free. The good news is that mildew will not harm the performance of the material, only the appearance. Quantum has a variety of options to mitigate mildew; speak with your local loft about which option is best for you and your sails. We also recommend coating mildew-susceptible sails with a hydrophobic solution, which will severely limit or completely eliminate future growth.