Find out the boat cleaning jobs you need to do to get your vessel into excellent shape before she heads out on the water
When it comes to boat cleaning we’ve got all the tips and advice you need to leave her sparkling.
First off, make sure you have all the boat cleaning products you need to hand to do the job properly. After all, there’s nothing worse than putting in the hours to find out you’ll have to do it all again, or worse, you’ve damaged your boat.
The essential equipment and products you’ll need
- Soft bristle brush
- Shammy leather, towel or dry rag
- Boat wash (Phosphate free)
- Fibreglass polish
- Boat wax
Begin by taping the waterline of the boat so as not to get any products on the underside or remove the antifouling as you clean.
Next, give your boat a good hose down with fresh water and then apply the boat wash liberally using a soft bristle brush. Make sure you’ve gone over all of the boat and work to improve the appearance of any substantial marks using a stain remover.
Once this is complete, rinse the boat down again so as to get rid of any soapsuds that may be left on. You can pick up a good boat wash for £7 to £14 from various outdoor stores or chandleries. Well-known brands include Starbite, 3M and Pro Marine. And if you like doing your bit for Mother Nature, there are also a number of environmentally-friendly boat cleaning products you can get your hands on.
Be careful not to use a household detergent such as washing-up liquid when cleaning your boat as it will strip existing layers of wax off the boat, meaning you’ll have to apply wax to it more often in future. Washing-up liquid also wasn’t meant for the marine environment and can be bad for waterways.
Using a dry cloth, apply an even layer of boat polish on to your vessel. Once you’ve covered the boat fully, wipe her down with a dry rag or towel, helping to remove any dust from the boat before you apply the wax. A good boat polish could set you back up to £18 with a number of brands offering good products.
Next thing on the list; in circular motions, cover your boat in boat wax. Ensure that you don’t miss any patches, as the wax is what will give you that fantastic shiny finish. Once you’re done, go over the wax with a dry towel to reveal a sparkling clean hull – as good as new. You should be able to pick up a good boat wax for between £10 and £20 from chandleries or outdoor stores.
If you have already dealt with your antifouling then you’re ready to head out on the water, if not, make sure you see the YBW.com guide to antifouling your boat.