Whether you took too long to slow the boat down and you scrape
the side of the deck, or your vinyl has been out in the water too long, there are
a lot of different ways in which your boat can be damaged. Sometimes the damage
can be very threatening–as in the case of leakage–or it can be surface-level
issues that harm the overall look of your boat. Either way, you need to know
how to spot this damage and how to
address it when you find it.
One of the most alarming discoveries you can make on your boat
is a leak. Although many people fear a boat sinking
because of a leak, small leaks can still do damage by letting in water and
rotting away at wood.
Make a regular inspection of your boat’s hull to check for
leaks; if you notice water constantly gathering in any area of your boat, be
sure to check around the damaged area for leaks. Sometimes they’re difficult to
identify because they’re minute and the water comes in slowly; even so, pay
attention to any added water on your boat, drain the area, and then inspect it
later to see if more water is coming in. Then it’s time to take your boat out
of the water for repairs and have a closer look.
Product to use: Life Calk
After sufficient experience with a boat, you might not think
much of the occasional “ding” or knock while you bring your boat to dock. But
you’d be surprised at just how heavy these marks and scuffs can be if you’re
not too careful, even on fiberglass.
Because fiberglass is such a common element on boats, it’s one
of the materials often exposed to small collisions and scuffs. Give your boat a
scan every time you bring it back in just to make sure that your boat is clear
of these marks; if not, it’s time to spring into action.
Product to use: Fiberglass Rubbing Compound
Stainless Steel Debris Buildup
It’s tempting to think of stainless steel as, well,
stainless–but like any other material it’s vulnerable to blemishes and damage.
Scratched stainless steel is a problem, as is running into debris that affixes
itself to the stainless steel on your boat; sometimes, you have to deal with
both problems at once.
For scratches, you might think about trying out a stainless
steel scratch “eraser” kit. Once you have that finished, clear out the debris
and use a quality stainless steel cleaner to restore its original shine.
Product to use: Stainless Steel Cleaner
There’s nothing that will make your boat look older than vinyl
that’s succumbing to staining as well as wear and tear. Even if your boat’s
hull is spotless, the vinyl within your boat has to look spotless or it will
reflect poorly on the entire package.
Sun damage is also an issue, which is why you should look for a
cleaner and protectant when dealing
with vinyl. Vinyl needs to be protected regularly just as you’d protect any
part of your boat that suffers damage from constant exposure to the sun.
Product to use: VinyLIFE Vinyl Cleaner & Protectant