Keeping your boat clean and looking good isn’t just a matter of pure vanity, it’s also an important part of basic boat maintenance. knowing how to clean a boat is imperative for any boat owner. It extends the useful lifespan of materials that are exposed to the environment, improves functionality in many cases, and if you keep it looking good you can sell your boat for more when the time comes to upgrade. But not everyone has the know-how to keep a boat clean. Below are a few tips on how to clean your boat properly.
Before selecting your Boat Cleaning equipment and products, consider the type of boat you have and its composition. This will ensure that you have the right tools and materials in hand for the job. Choose cleaning brushes that are sturdy and will get rid of stubborn dirt, grime and salt, without damaging the finish or gel coat on your boat. Don’t use a brush that’s too rough, or it could damage your boat’s finish. For most situations, a brush with medium-soft bristles will do just fine.
Whatever type or brand of brush you select, make sure the bristle material is durable and strong enough to withstand repeated use, sun exposure, cleaning agents and salt water. In addition to a good scrub brush, be sure to have other necessities, such as a bucket (large enough for your brush), washing pads, a mop, sponges, chamois cloths and towels handy. Store these items in the same place each time, so you won’t have to search for them.
Once you have the right cleaning tools and soap at your fingertips, it’s time to start cleaning. While you’ll still have to supply some "muscle," using the proper equipment and soap will make giving your boat a bath an easier, quicker process.
Before you think about applying any cleaning agents or touching the hull with a scrub brush, make sure you rinse the entire boat off completely. Use soft drying cloths that are highly absorbent and will soak up water without stripping or scratching. Chamois cloths or drying mops made of chamois material are good choices. To avoid "spotting," be sure to dry off your boat immediately after washing and rinsing.
Once you have dried off your boat completely, you may want to apply a quality wax and buff to shine and protect the fiberglass. It’s not really necessary to wax your boat after every use, but this should be done at least once or twice during the season to preserve the luster of the hull and protect against the elements and impurities. Be sure to apply several coats.
There are many quality cleaners and sealants available for keeping the chrome and stainless steel on your boat protected, shiny and bright. After applying a light film on your brightwork, let sit for about 15 to 30 minutes. Then, wipe off with a clean cloth.
Clean off your boat’s vinyl upholstery with a damp cloth to remove grime, dirt and salt. You may want to follow this by applying a quality vinyl cleaners/protectant and again wiping off the surface.
On a side note, once the upholstery is free of dirt and grime, apply a light film of spray-on furniture polish and wipe with a clean cloth. This should help guard against stains and preserve the life of your boat’s upholstery.
Hopefully these tips will help you make your boat look brand new once again!