Learn How To Clean Vinyl Boat Seats Of Mildew Without The Help Of A Service Professional And Commercial Cleaner In This Short Yet Informative Article
Mildew is a common problem among boat owners. As boats spend most of the time around the water, moisture present in the air creates an ideal breeding environment for mildew to thrive on the vinyl seats. Those unsightly-looking whitish dots not only decreases the boats aesthetic value but cause health issues as well. If your boat vinyl seats are stained from mildew, then read this article till the end to learn how to clean vinyl boat seats of mildew.
Boaters Edge Mildew Stain Remover
This Boaters Edge product is a must-have for boat owners. It comes in handy as a sprayer that you can carry and place anywhere inside the boat. Its not complicated to use as you only need to apply it on the affected area and wait for the stain to fade before rinsing it off completely.
Many boaters invest in this item because it works with any surface on contact. It can remove black mold in boat cabins, markings on fiberglass, and footprints on the wooden deck. Its triple-action formula is specially designed for marine use, making it safe for your boat.
It is also reliable when cleaning at home. Enough with the ineffective commercial bleaches and homemade vinegar and baking soda remedies. This remover can eliminate dirt, grease, and grime straightaway. If youre bummed out about that stained shower and kitchen tiles, then this stuff is the right pick.
This mold remover is pretty powerful, so you wont have to worry about scrubbing too much. Directly spray it on the mildew and watch it do its thing without breaking a sweat. It saves a lot of work while giving you those results youve always wanted.
However, it is not advisable to use fabric and clothing as it can cause bleaching. If youre unsure about possible discoloration, test it on a small portion before applying it entirely. You also need to be careful about getting direct contact on your skin. So, always wear gloves and extra protection on yourself when using it.
- Tougher stains need a little brushing to be removed
Can I Use Bleach On Vinyl
Although it may be tempting to use bleach, this whitening agent can dry out and in turn, damage vinyl. While some recommend a diluted solution of water and bleach, there are plenty of products that are far superior reducing your risk of damage and potentially needing to reupholster.
The same is true with any other harsh compound, including but not limited to concentrated detergents, waxes, dry cleaning fluids, solvents, and acid-based cleaners.
Regardless of the issue, its best to check your vinyl seats maintenance instructions. That way, youll gain insight into suggested best practices moving forward. If your seats are removable, take them off so that you can clean them more effectively and always use soft cleaning tools.
Its best to have soft-bristled brushes handy, as well as some spare sponges and/or dishcloths. This will reduce the risk of damage.
When in doubt, always opt for a specialized cleaner. For all of your marine needs, regardless of the application, there are effective products.
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The Importance Of Proper Cleaning
Proper cleaning and care of your boat will pay off in the long run. Not only will you create a safe environment for your passengers, you will also ensure your boat is showroom set if you decide to sell it. What’s more, regular vinyl maintenance will cut down on expensive resurfacing jobs and help preserve the integrity of your boat for years to come.
How To Clean Vinyl Boat Seats With Household Products
Boat seats can take a beating over winter storage and summer use in 2021. Cleaning and maintaining vinyl boat seats are important for you and your guests and lengthening the use of your boat furniture.
There are many boat cleaning products that you can purchase on Amazon or at your local hardware store but we recommend trying something you already have in your house dish soap.
Thank you for visiting us learning some best practices for cleaning boat seats. You may also be interested in our recent posts about bumpers, fenders, and accessories, portable toilets & privacy enclosures, replacement flooring options, and snow covers for the winter.
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Mold Cleaning Product Warning
Bleach-based cleaning products are some of the most popular options when it comes to getting rid of mold from boats. Not only is bleach an effective cleaning product, it is also extremely affordable. Unfortunately, bleach deteriorates the stitching on marine vinyl. The detrimental effects are even more noticeable when you combine bleach and sunlight. Mixing bleach and sunlight will cause the threads that bind vinyl seat cushions to weaken and eventually disintegrate. For this reason experts recommend using a mixture of bleach and water exclusively for smaller mold jobs.
If you have extensive mold growth on your boat’s vinyl exteriors, then you might consider using a more expensive cleaning product specially designed for the marine market. Doing so will eliminate bleaching concerns. However, before you buy a mold-killing product make sure to read the fine print. Some vinyl cleaners are automotive formulas repackaged for use on boats. However, they do not include special ultraviolet blocking ingredients that boat owners should be using to protect marine vinyl.
Get More Boat Tips From Smooth Moves Seats
Stay connected to our blog to find more boat tips or to read stories from our pro anglers on why they love using Smooth Moves Seats. To learn about the benefits of upgrading to our advanced boat seat system, browse our website for more details on our Smooth Moves Air and Ultra. Or find a dealer near you!
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How To Clean White Vinyl Boat Seats Even Mold And Mildew
Comfort is one of the things that guarantee a fun-filled sailing experience! Clean, white boat seats and well-kept pieces of equipment can make it possible. To maintain everything in order inside your boat, you should devote time for maintenance.
One of your concerns will be how to clean white vinyl boat seats. Its not grueling, although the color can easily catch dirt. There are different ways of cleaning these boat seats, such as with a stain remover solution, steam cleaner, or household items like baking soda, soap and water, and vinegar.
Read on to know every step you need to follow to keep your vinyl boat seats shiny and white
Scrub But Don’t Scrub
Alright, so we’ve gone over the cleaning and drying process but there is one more thing that we need to cover. I mentioned at the very beginning about a scuffed seat. After a few rounds, people start wanting to kick their feet up on anything available. I don’t blame anyone because I do the exact same thing, but it still leaves marks.
Check out these premium boat scuff magic erasers. They make removing these unsightly marks an absolute snap. Stay away from those green scrubbing pads and especially steel wool, and be amazed at how quickly these magic erasers can clean vinyl seats. They can work anywhere else on your boat as well!
You won’t find anything safer or easier. Speaking of scrubbing, when you’re using the ultra safe cleanser we mentioned you should pair it with an equivalent brush. This high-quality cleaning brush set includes one nylon brush for general cleaning, and a gentler horse-hair brush for any detailing that needs to get done.
Your scrubbing shouldn’t be overly vigorous, and the cleaning brush set above does wonders at helping you to apply just the right amount of force. With the arsenal of four simple items I’ve suggested, you’ll be prepared for any difficulties that might be presented. Mother Nature will cower in fear at your cleaning prowess!
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Wipe Away Remaining Mildew
Gently scrubbing the vinyl seats as well as the crevices will remove the majority of mildew. However, minor amounts of mildew and mold may linger. Use a microfiber cloth to wipe away the remaining mildew. Depending on the extent of mildew, several microfiber cloths may be needed.
Eliminating heavy mildew stains is unlikely to be accomplished in one round of cleaning. Successfully removing the mildew may require repeating the aforementioned steps several times. If a stain is especially stubborn, boat owners have a last line of defensemagic erasers.
A magic eraser sponge is manufactured with cleaners inside. Boat owners often notice good results immediately upon using the magic eraser on problem areas. A few passes may be necessary to get rid of the mildew. Apply gentle pressure to avoid causing further ruin to the vinyl boat seats.
Once the mildew stains are removed, add a vinyl protectant as a preventive measure against future mildew outbreaks. Since mildew thrives in moisture-rich areas, wipe down the vinyl seats after a day on the water. Run a towel along the seats cracks and seams to ensure a thorough dry.
Rub Stains Off With Magic Eraser
Magic Eraser can work wonders to get rid of stubborn stains on vinyl upholstery, but try not to overdo it. The stuff can abrade your seats and cause micro-scratches on the surface where dirt, stains, and other contaminants can settle later on. So it pays to work as gently as possible.
Unlike your brush or spray, Magic Eraser can more effectively work into nooks and crannies to get rid of deep seated dirt. As you work it into the material, youll notice it creates a grayish debris from all the contamination on your seats. When youre done, it would help to take your microfiber cloth and wipe away the stuff to reveal the Erasers effects.
*See our guide on: how to clean boat seats with Magic Eraser
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How To Remove Mildew From Boat Canvas
Do you ever wonder how the white canvas on boats stays clean? Arent these materials exposed to all the elements? If you look closer, youll see its not pure white. Mildew thrives on boat tops, which can be also covered in bird feces. Youve probably seen a lot of tutorials showing the use of bleach. However, dont hurry to use it right away as it might bring damaging effects to your canvas boat coverings rather than actually cleaning it. So instead of using bleach, grab a soft brush or a pressure washer.
Let me tell you why bleach is not on top of our list in cleaning the canvas of your boat. It is rather suggested that mildew stains be cleaned using natural substances rather than using chemical-based products. Chlorine bleach can cause the canvas stitches to gradually dwindle. So instead of just being a mildew stain remover, bleach can break and damage your canvas. In the end, you will need new threads to replace any dwindled stitches that will cost more cash.
Use Magic Erasers On Stubborn Stains
Magic eraser sponges come with special cleaners inside that are ready to tackle messes that stick. What’s also helpful about them is that you don’t have to scrub too hard to see results, so they make for an excellent relief if you’ve been having trouble with a problem area. All you need to do is get them wet and get to wiping.
Because of their size, too, magic erasers are more likely to be able to fit into any gaps and seams your brush can’t manage to get into because of the size. You may need to take a couple of passes with the eraser to get up all the stains, but you will start to see results.
Like with your brush, you don’t want to scrub too hard with magic erasers since they can potentially cause damage to your vinyl. Take your process easy, and you’ll be in good shape to clean up your remaining mildew mess.
You could start with magic erasers if you like, but you don’t need all that power for all stains. Save them for things you can’t get rid of with the above steps.
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Cleaning Sticky White Vinyl Boat Seats
You dont want to sit on slimy, sticky seats for sure. The thought of it can make someone feel disgusted. Therefore, your seats will be useless in this state. It may seem threatening, but it only takes vinegar and cloth to make the stickiness disappear.
You have to soak the cloth in white vinegar. Wipe it on the sticky parts. If it persists, you can dab lubricating oil on the affected surface. The final step is using the cloth to remove the residue.
Shall I Use Bleach On White Vinyl Boat Seats
Bleach is considered a whitening agent. However, is it safe to use on white vinyl boat seats? Unfortunately, it dries out vinyl and even causes damage. Dont mind recommendations saying to dilute it with water for making a cleaning solution.
There are stain remover solutions that are way safer and more effective than bleach. You have to be aware of harmful substances aside from bleach. Some of them are ammonia, detergents, waxes, solvents, acid-based cleaner, and dry cleaning fluids.
Its crucial to know and avoid harsh substances so reupholstering wont be needed later on. Also, you have to be careful with what you use for scrubbing. Soft-bristle brushes are the ideal tools. You may also prepare spare sponges and dishcloths.
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How To Remove Mold Mildew Or Leaf Stains From Leather Or Vinyl
Mildew, mold and leaf stains on marine vinyl, boat upholstery or leather furniture often cannot be completely cleaned, but they can be concealed with Rub n Restore®. These stains must first be treated to kill any living fungus, so it does not grow through the new finish.
For leather, treat mold or mildew with denatured or rubbing alcohol . Alcohol is better than undiluted distilled white vinegar due to its less acidic pH. It also leaves less odor. Allow to sit for 30 minutes to several hours and then gently scrub the surface.
For marine vinyl, weve had many years success with a solution of 10% bleach in water, but EPA and OSHA have retracted bleach as an effective mold remediation. Bleach is no more effective than alcohol or distilled white vinegar but is more toxic. It does, however, work faster . It also lightens the remaining stains most effectively. Some customers have also reported success with Marine 31® Mildew Remover.
Never use abrasives like borax or baking soda on leather or vinyl.
If the mold is present on the interior stuffing, if it returns after treating the leather or vinyl, or if youre concerned about mycotoxins, the items should be placed in a sealed ozone chamber. Contact a local fire or flood restoration company. Otherwise, the piece will require replacement or reupholstery.
Protecting Vinyl Boat Cushions From The Sun
UV rays take a constant toll on your boats vinyl and every other surface, for that matter. And while there are several vinyl protectants on the market that claim to offer a shield against harmful UV rays, none of them is half as effective as physically blocking out the sunlight.
Fortunately, many boat cushions are held down with snaps or mounted on tracks so they can be easily removed. If you can, remove your cushions and stow them in a dry, well-ventilated console or cabin between trips. Itll be well worth the effort. In the case of large cushions that are difficult to remove or cushions that are affixed to the boat, the best protection is a canvas cover that fits over the seating module or the entire boat. Yes, it can be difficult to put on and take off a full boat cover every time you go boating, but the cover will extend the lifespan of your vinyl by many years and help protect all the other parts of your boat from damaging UV rays. You might even want to consider adding a cowl cover to your outboard to protect your investment from end to end.
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Will Vinegar Make The Canvas Smell After It Dries
No, using white vinegar to clean mildew out of canvas will not cause the canvas to smell like vinegar after you rinse and dry the canvas. Once the vinegar dries completely you do not smell it at all.
If you are still concerned about it, add a little Woolite or other mild soap to the mix, as was mentioned earlier to add a little fresh smell to the canvas. This is completely optional though.
What if you do not want to mix up your own DIY solution for removing mildew?
Proven Ways To Remove Mildew From A Boat
If you own a boat you know what a chore it can be to remove mildew from canvas and other surfaces like vinyl.
On my boat, I get a lot of mildew on the vinyl seat bolsters even though they sit outside in the sun. For this reason, I have tried a few different methods for cleaning mildew from boat canvas and vinyl.
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Cleaning White Vinyl Boat Seats In Different Ways
1) Vinegar Method
The first homemade cleaning solution for white vinyl boat seats comes as no surprise. It is the well-known powerhouse of getting rid of dirt vinegar!
Although this element alone is often enough to clean dirty spots and rusts, it may need some help from other agents to do its job right on vinyl seats. This happens since vinyl is a pretty sensitive material that needs a little extra care. Besides, no one would like to mess up an expensive purchase like it.
To prepare the cleaning mixture, combine white vinegar and warm water in the ratio of 1:2. This proportion is important if the seats are white in color. Including warm water will help you to retain the original shine of these seats. Then add two tablespoons of the liquid dish soap you prefer the most.
You can pour this mixture into a spraying bottle and spritz it on the seats. Alternatively, you can absorb some of the mixture on a clean washcloth and use it to scrub the dirt off your boat seats.
2) Baking Soda
There are two ways to go about this. The first one aims at cleaning the whole seat and leaving no spot behind. For this cleaning solution, all you will need is some baking soda and a clean towel.
Sprinkle some baking soda on the towel and rub it on the vinyl surface. This will get rid of all the debris accumulated on seats.
Apply a bit of this paste on the target spot. Then use a clean washcloth to scrub off the stain.
3) Club Soda
6) Warm Soapy Water