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Boat Cleaning

Boat cleaning is one of those not so fun things about boating, but it is a necessary evil. Having the right tools for the job is paramount to getting your boat cleaning completed fast and efficiently. Spend a bit more on the tools and spend a lot less time cleaning your boat. We offer everything from deck brush handles (who hasn't lost one of those) to cleaning compunds and chemicals. If you are looking for top of the line Deck Brushes or Window Squeegees we have them. We also offer complete line of Cleaning Kits to save you money!

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Bubbles and Brushes: Time to Wash that Boat

The Importance of Boat Washing

At some point after taking your first boat out a time or two that there are no drive-through boat washes on the high seas. A car owner has the choice to wash his vehicle at home, bring it to a self-service bay car wash, take it to a drive-through car wash, or even hop out at an automated car wash. Boat owners do not have quite as many choices, yet boat cleaning is even more important than the cleaning of road vehicles. What many new boat owners don’t realize is how important it is to wash down a boat after every single time it is used. Salt water is extremely corrosive and it just gets everywhere. Even if you don’t take your boat out for a spin, it should be washed regularly. The salt gets in the air and can damage your boat that way, as well. Salt corrodes aluminum parts in no time and that damage can not be reversed. If left on glass for too long, it actually stains it. It is damaging to almost all boat finishes including gel coats. Remember, too, when salt dries, it is rough and can scratch surfaces, just like sand. For those of you that trailer your boat rather than docking it in season, it is very important to wash your boat between uses in different locations – even if none of them are salt water. Invasive aquatic species can actually be spread from one body of water to another by boats that have been used both places. A species of plant or animal that may not be harmful in one body of water could be harmful in its non-native environment.

Tips to Get Started

Before you even pick up the hose, you need to make sure you have the right materials for the job and that starts with boat soap . Of course, what kind of soap you use will depend on what type of material your boat is made out of. Many multi-purpose type boat soaps can be used on all fiberglass surfaces, the motor, glass, and even fabrics. In some cases you will want to buy a separate cleaner for the fabrics on your boat. Read the descriptions of products carefully to make sure you are getting what you need. If your boat is heavily salted, you will want to consider purchasing ad additional Salt-Off product to remove salt residue and crystals. If your boat has teak, without a doubt you need a different type of cleaner for those surfaces. Depending on the level of dirt and or salt on your boat, you may need other products like: rust remover, plastic cleaner, hull cleaner, deck cleaner, mildew remover, and metal polish. There are even specific cleaners available for black streaks on your boat. Marine Supply Dock carries a full line of Boat Soaps and specialty cleaners for all areas of the boat.

In addition to boat soaps, you will need a boat brush or boat brushes depending on your situation. Again, a lot depends on the type of boat you have. Marine Supply Dock has a wide selection of brushes and brush handles for every nook and cranny on board. For smaller areas and areas that need to be scrubbed on hands knees hand held bushes, like the Captain’s Choice Bottom Scrubber and the Captain’s Choice Handy Scrub are great choices. For large jobs, like the deck, brushes with attachable handles like the7.5” Swobbit Medium Deck Brush are perfect. At times special locations are more easily cleaned with specialty brushes. The windows, hull, and wheel, for instance, can be easily cleaned with the 5” Shurhold Soft Bristle Round Deck Brush.

A little elbow grease
Once all of your supplies are in order it’s time to get down to business. You will want to start by hosing off the whole boat. A lot of experts recommend letting the first hosing sit a minute or two to start to dissolve salt and then hosing the boat down again to rinse away the salt before continuing. Remember dried salt can be very abrasive. At this point you are ready for some soap and that elbow grease. According your specific soap’s directions add it to a bucket and water or attach it to the hose. Depending on the surface you are cleaning use a brush or sponge to scrub the boat. Work section-by-section rinsing each right after washing. While you may not want to hand dry every part of the boat, it is suggested that you dry as much as you can to prevent streaks. Glass can be cleaned and then dried with a squeegee. Cleaning your boat often and thoroughly may seem like a lot of work, but it is certainly worth it to protect your investment!