Cleaning Mold And Mildew Off Boat Seats
Some people suggest using a mixture of 3 parts water and 1 part mild soap, with a soft cloth or sponge. I think youll find that to be a complete waste of time. Mold is not just sitting on the surface of the vinyl. It penetrates a little and thats why you need to use a more aggressive product and procedure.
There are several products for cleaning mold. Not many actually work, but some work really well. In the video below, youll see what most would consider an extreme case. If you didnt see the boat seat vinyl become clean, you wouldnt believe it could be done. Yet, look how simple it was.
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.
Why Clean Your Boat Seats
Even though boat seats are designed to hold up against the environmental conditions they encounter, you will still want to make sure you are keeping them cleaned and well maintained.
The most obvious reason you would want to clean your boat seats is so that you and your passengers will want to sit on them without the fear of getting dirty,
It can be highly unappealing to sit on a boat seat that has stains, mildew, or even bird droppings on it so you will want to maintain cleanliness at all times.
You also will want to maintain cleanliness for your boat seats to protect them and their integrity.
Without regular cleanings and care, they will accumulate dirt and mildew that can cause damage to overtime.
To protect your seats and preserve your investment long term, you will want to clean your seats regularly as well as taking steps to guard them against the harmful UV rays that come from the sun.
You May Like: How To Remove Black Mold From Bathtub Caulk
Choose The Right Cleaning Solution
Oh, the horror stories Ive heard of some cheap Charlie that thought they could save a few bucks by attacking their vinyl seats with bleach and a pad of steel wool. I shudder at the thought. To clean vinyl seats you need to utilize the right cleaning product, or be at risk of wearing away the structural integrity of the vinyl itself!
Even supposedly lighter cleaning solutions such as Windex or that old Navy favorite Simple Green will deteriorate vinyl over repeated uses. You definitely dont want to end up with a color-faded seat, especially one covered in duct tape patches for the myriad tears that will start developing once the vinyl seat starts to give.
Of course, reupholstering every few years isnt an option for most of us either, so the only solution left to clean vinyl seats is a cleaner that doesnt use harsh chemicals and can protect your seats properly. Enter The Better Boats marine leather conditioner and cleaner with UV resin!
Our marine leather/vinyl cleaner is so gentle that it will not degrade seats or trim even after years of use. It adds moisture to restore color, and leaves a UV resin that will prevent the color from being stripped away. When I hear horror stories of bleach and ammonia, this is what I recommend. It just works.
Dont Miss: Diversey Harbor Slip Rates
How To Protect Your Boats Seats While Parked:
Maintenance is important to keeping your boat seats looking great, but it is not the only thing that you should be doing.
When you are not using the boat, you should cover your boat for its own protection. This will prevent all kinds of dirt and damage to your boat.
If you do not want to cover the entire boat, which can be a pain at times, you could look into boat seat covers.
When looking for boat seat covers make sure that you find some that are breathable to prevent mildew. You will also want to be sure your covers are made with a fabric that blocks UV rays.
Read Also: What Health Issues Does Black Mold Cause
Prevention Tips For Avoiding Mildew On Vinyl Boat Seats In The Future
There are several prevention tips you can follow to avoid mildew on vinyl boat seats in the future. One tip is to make sure the area where you store your boat is well-ventilated. Another tip is to regularly clean and dry your vinyl boat seats after use. You can also treat your vinyl boat seats with a mold and mildew-resistant spray before storing them for long periods. If you have vomit stains or other organic stains on your seats, it is also important to clean them up as soon as possible, as they can provide food for mold and mildew to grow. Consider that removing vomit stains from a carpet can be very difficult, so you don’t want to wait too long to clean up these types of stains. Also, similar to removing stains from car seats, you’ll want to be careful about what type of cleaner you use on your vinyl boat seats. Some cleaners can damage the surface of the vinyl, so it is important to read the labels carefully and test a small area first before using any cleaner on the entire seat. Also, when it comes to a similar topic, when you remove water stains from fabric car seats, you’ll want to be careful not to over-wet the seat, as this can also damage the fabric.
The Best Mildew Removers For Boat Seats
Boat seats are the most prominent part of any boat. If your boat seats have mildew stains and bird droppings, the entire boat will look unpleasant. Therefore, cleaning and maintaining play crucial roles in preserving your craft in terms of its appearance and overall condition. Thanks to mildew removers, mold and mildew are conveniently erased from the picture.
There are several mildew removers available in the market, making it hard to choose one to buy. Hence, here are my reviews on some of the best mildew remover for boat seats that you can consider.
Using Magic Eraser Just In Case
Im pretty hopeful that you would manage to get rid of mildew if you follow the above steps. In case any stubborn mildew patch remains intact on your vinyl boat seats, this step will do the rest.
Sometimes you need powerful cleaning tools to counter the stubborn stains. Magic Eraser is one of the cleaning products that would eliminate mildew once and for all.
Apply Magic Eraser on your vinyl boat seats to deal with remaining tough mildew patches. As and when you wipe it, you would see that mildew had never been there.
Afterward, use a clean microfiber cloth again to wipe off the remaining cleaning fluid, if any.
Spray Mold And Mildew Stain Remover
Take your mold and mildew remover spray and give a liberal spritz all over your seats. Pull back cushions where the seats might fold so you can really get into those nooks and crannies. As a general rule, youre going to want to be generous with your application to really get the stuff to work.
Once everything is nice and coated in the spray, leave it to sit for 10 to 15 minutes. This should help the formula really work its magic and eat away at those stubborn stains. If your mold and mildew stains arent too old, this might be all you need to get the job done.
Recommended Reading: How To Detect Mold In My Home
Heres What You Need To Keep Boat Seats Clean
According to J.D. Power, Most manufacturers use vinyl for their seats across their types of boats since this material can stand up to the wet conditions of regular exposure to water and the other strains of being on the water. Even so, vinyl is susceptible to mildew, and you need to gather the right materials to get started.
The recommended materials include:
- Mr. Clean Magic Eraser sponges
The good news? The products listed above are affordable. Just be sure to stay away from bleach. Using bleach products on vinyl seats can ruin the material and the stitching.
Cleaning With Mineral Oil:
Mineral oil is a less common ingredient than vinegar or bleach. Mineral oil is created as a by-product during the distillery process of petroleum.
This cleaner is recommended for cleaning vinyl stains that are older, or even stains that have been caused by oil or grease.
This is because mineral oil has the ability to decompose oils while not doing damage to the surface featured underneath.
One important thing to note when using mineral oil for cleaning your seats it that it is mainly used for the stain itself. For this reason, you will want to make sure your seat is cleaned before proceeding with the mineral oil.
Tips on using mineral oil on marine vinyl seats include:
- To apply the mineral oil you will want to use a small piece of dry cloth that you have applied a few drops of mineral oil to.
- Wipe the stain with the cloth.
- If the stain seems to be really deep, you can consider using a few drops applied directly on the stain.
- Keep the stain on for about 5 minutes.
- Make sure you wash off the mineral oil.
- Repeat this process until the stain is sufficiently removed.
Mineral oil should not be used as a basic cleaning ingredient, it should be used more as a spot corrector for stain removal.
Make sure you are using the proper oil and that you are following any directions or special instructions.
Read Also: How Much Is Mold Removal In Bathroom
Cleaning Products For Boat Seats
After decades of playing with boats, I have found some cleaning products that I count on to do the best job for me. One might expect that you would have to spend a bunch of money on marine only cleaners. However, thats not what Ive found, and I dont just work on cheap beginner boats. I have boats that are upwards of $50,000 and I use the same products if theyre required.
On BeginBoating.com youll most often see examples of projects being done to some pretty neglected boats. This is done with purpose, because when most people begin boating, they do it with a beginner boat. Just like in the video above, Im cleaning boat seats of a boat that I most likely am going to donate . It does you no good if I demonstrate how to clean a newer semi-dirty seat.
For cleaning vinyl boat seats, these are a couple trusted ones:
Dont Create Additional Work For Yourself
Many people start out by cleaning their boat seats with a low-grade, low-intensity cleaner such as dish detergent solution to see if that does the job. Unless your problem is very minor, you may as well skip this step. If your mildew or mold problem is serious enough to cause odor, theres a good chance its already deep-set in your boat seats. Youre going to need a cleaner with a little more heft to make quick work of it.
Read Also: How To Clean Clothes Exposed To Mold Spores
Preventing Mold And Mildew From Growing
Once youve effectively cleaned your boat seat, you face another question: how do you prevent this infestation from happening again? Mold and mildew tend to grow when the conditions are ripe. Be on the lookout for the following:
- Plenty of moisture or humidity in the air. Mold and mildew thrive on moisture. If your boat is stored near lakes, rivers, and oceans, this is often a given.
- Warm weather. Your boat tends to be outdoors longer in the warm weather, leading to the promotion of mildew growth.
- Quick drops in temperature. Condensation that forms due to temperature swings can create a friendly environment for mold on your boat seats.
The simplest solution for each of these situations is to stow your boat away in a dry place and never use it. That, of course, is unrealistic. So apply some protectant to your boat seating instead. We
M Mildew Stain Remover
It is tricky to penetrate through those deep, mildew stains and bring back the color of your spotless white vinyl seats. Luckily, this powerful 3M boat mildew remover can help you eliminate those stubborn dark mold stains.
Specifically formulated for marine and outdoor use, it can clean multiple surfaces on your boat, including deck furniture, seat upholstery, and more. Additionally, it offers lasting protection because it can penetrate through layers and deeply-embedded parts from where mold can sprout again.
In detail, the incredible results of this product also go beyond the surface. It not only clears the top layer but also deters widespread mildew formation by seeping through the material to reach the source. Mainly, boat owners get a hand on this item because of its long-term effect of slowing down mold growth.
This cleaning agent is easy to use by just spraying it on and wiping it off with a cloth. Any dirty surface can be restored to back to its original fresh condition with this quick and simple stain remover.
- Deeper mildew stains need extra time for soaking and scrubbing
Ultimately, we vouch for this boat upholstery mildew cleaner for getting through tough stains. It also works well with different surfaces that may be touched with water and removes unwanted marks with just a spray.
Also Check: Who Owns Freedom Boat Club
Read Also: How Can You Tell If Mold Is Toxic
Iosso Mold And Mildew Stain Remover
Lets face it, a mold in boat cabin brings a lot of headache and stress to all boat owners because it is an indication that there is a problem with the cleaning and maintenance of the boat. However, there are a lot of products that a boat owner can use to remove this unwanted fungus in the boat.
One of my friends have tested and used this product and the feedback was extremely good. According to him, this product can effectively remove black mold in boat using non-toxic and biodegradable ingredients which is excellent in my opinion. Anybody will like products that not only clean but also will take care of the environment.
Being a non-toxic product, I am also impressed when I learned that this stain remover does not contain strong chemicals such as chlorine and bleach which are normal with other regular stain removers. Actually, you will notice the nice smell it produces during the application which is great.
Meanwhile, I also like the versatility of this product in terms of cleaning different types of surfaces not only in the boat seats but also in the other parts of the boat. This product has been proven to effectively clean and remove stains, oil, algae, and other types of dirt. It can also be applied to the different types of surfaces such as fiberglass, carpets, canvas, wood, vinyl, and painted surfaces.
- Need to dilute before the application
Mildew Keeps Coming Back What To Do
No matter how hard they cleanse your boat seats, many boat owners are tired of witnessing mildew outbreaks again and again. Unfortunately, mildew spores can be sneaky.
Even if you clean your boat seats thoroughly, theres no doubt youll at least leave some spores behind. And, once your seats are exposed to moisture and humidity, these spores are bound to grow and trouble you.
Therefore, if youre willing to clean boat interior fabric upholstery instead of replacing them, please feel free to do it.
But as the President of American Marine Canvas and Upholstery, Phillip Liberson has mentioned, you need to replace the entire seat foam and vinyl covering to get rid of repetitive mildew issues.
Don’t Miss: How To Cover Up Mold
How To Prevent Mold From Forming On Boat Seats
Aside from using vinyl protectant, there are plenty of things you can do to prevent the need to clean up mold and mildew on your boat seats. Here are a few:
- Wipe down your seats after use. Mold and mildew form from moisture, so wipe down those seats after you’ve had a day on the water! Even if it doesn’t seem like there’s any wetness, it pays to run a towel through cracks and seams.
- Maintain your boat while it’s in storage. Mildew can spring up when you least expect itâespecially if your vessel’s in storage. Checking in on your boat, even when it’s not in use, can help you catch a mess before it becomes a problem.
- Purchase mildew-resistant seat material. If you are in the market for a new boat or you’re replacing a seat that’s too far gone, look into mold-resistant materials. While not one-hundred percent foolproof, they will reduce your chances of getting a moldy mess in the first place.
Keeping your seats clean will pay off when selling your boat, as mold and mildew can decrease your ship’s value.
Needed Equipment And Products To Remove Mildew From Boat Seats
Depending on the material of your boat seats you may need different products and materials but most seat cushions and boat seats are made with vinyl. Vinyl is a material that can withstand a lot of exposure to sun and water and it wont get damaged easily as other materials, which is why most boat manufacturers use it for the interior. However, it is still susceptible to mildew and as a boat owner, you will need to get the right equipment and products to get rid of the mildew from your vinyl seats. The products we recommend are affordable and wont cost you a fortune. The things youll need to remove mildew stains are:
- Soft brush
- UV and Marine protective spray
- Microfiber cloth
Also Check: Can Toxic Mold Kill You