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Old 20-09-2014, 14:45   #1
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Favorite cleaning products

Hello! We are closing on our first boat Monday and are super excited. I can't wait to get on there and clean the boat so it feels fresh for us. It is an older boat, with some nice teak down below. So, my question is are they any special cleaning products that you all recommend for us to get? I want to take great care of this boat! Thank you!


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Old 20-09-2014, 15:02   #2
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Oh boy!! Congratulations!!

The most important thing is constant and continuous maintenance. I've got a lot of mahogany below and it's some work. Every so often you'll have to revarnish areas that get wear or lots of sun...do it before they get nasty and take a lot more work.

As for cleaning products. I'm pretty big on Murphy's Oil Soap for the interior wood. I use a lot of the citrus degreaser that you can get at many hardware stores. It works pretty well in places where you need a "soap" type product and leaves a nice aroma instead of the weird flowery smells of many soaps. I even use it for cleaning the bilge. And finally, Joy! It's a little hard to find but I look for it when I'm in the stores. It works in salt water so it's great for cleaning dishes and I use it for salt water bathing...followed by a fresh water rinse.

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Old 20-09-2014, 15:19   #3
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

For vinyl with Black mold spots I have found MSRs mold away to be fantastic! Normally I'm not to enthusiastic about products; However with this circumstance I have tried numerous other products without any success.

I'm thinking of trying their other items as well.
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Old 20-09-2014, 15:58   #4
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Another vote for Murphy's Oil Soap for interior wood (and gelcoat). Distilled vinegar works pretty well on mold. A product called "Marykate Spray Away" works wonders on grease and diesel spills. Cleaning wax or rubbing compound for really tough gelcoat stains.
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Old 20-09-2014, 17:04   #5
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

murphys
vinegar
baking soda
clorox only for clothing-- whites after engine rebuilding assist
laundry soap (clothing and dirty bilges, occasionally to rarely. like after an engine rebuild)
they dont have bilge soap here so i throw some non bleach mexican liquid soap of favorite scent into bilge occasionally as the water here is not clean. ( i found lavendar is not overpowering when used in moderation)
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Old 20-09-2014, 17:13   #6
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Turps is a great product to clean offending greasy spots in galley area. I found this trying to clean acrylic galley lockers' doors.

Nothing else worked.

Magic.

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Old 20-09-2014, 20:01   #7
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

You can spend a lot of money on various cleaning products all with the 'best ever' type advertising, yet plain old white vinegar works for almost everything. Followed by some diluted oil of cloves will keep mould at bay. For stuburn oily stains I use Gumption paste on hard surfaces and if need be follow up with a wax polish. Keep it simple and repeat often and all will remain fresh.

Cheers Sue
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Old 20-09-2014, 20:22   #8
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Cheap white vinegar. I have 2 gallons aboard at all times. The best.
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Old 21-09-2014, 06:41   #9
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Not sure where you will be. But in SFLA everything but the woodwork gets Clorox spray. It removes mold without being as rough on the lungs as some "mold removers" and is cheap. FWIW even Practical Sailer recognized clorox as an alternative.

Home Depot sells a third party wood restore product that did wonders bringing back the rich luster of the below decks teak on my boat.


You do realize that when cleaning a sailboat that airing out is critical!! Clean for 3 hours or so and then take her sailing for 3 hours. It does wonders to clear out the cobwebs ��
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Old 21-09-2014, 06:54   #10
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Congrats!

On deck: roll off, magic eraser, barkeepers friend

Wood: murphy's oil soap, lemon oil

Surfaces: vinegar and water, barkeepers friend, magic eraser

For a dirty such as intracoastal smile on the waterline or bow (muddy stain) toilet bowl cleaner (outside not inside boat!)

SC


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Old 21-09-2014, 08:13   #11
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Everyone, thank you so much for all the great advice!

If you have seen My big fat greek wedding, you may be familiar with the Dad who is obsessed with Windex? If so, well that is my mom- except with Vinegar! So yes, I know all about the white vinegar and have a bottle of that I dilute a bit. I add orange essential oil, but I didn't know about the cloves, that's a great idea, I will have to try it.

Oh so many options now! It does look I need to get some Murphy's oil soap. And I love the idea of toilet bowel cleaner on the waterline, makes sense.
I didn't ever think of putting laundry soap in the bilge! First I've got to give it a good scrub out, it's pretty nasty now. My plan is to keep that bilge nice and clean.

Thanks again for so many recommendations. I'm glad I have the CF app on my phone, so I can just refer to this thread when I'm out shopping for cleaning products. First I will look under my kitchen cabinet and see how many I have. Besides the vinegar.

PS I will post about the boat we are buying after we close on it tomorrow. It's been something we've been working towards for a year and a half, and I get nervous to put the cart before the horse and jinx it. Not that anything could happen, but you know...

PPS Snore, yes we will try to get out and sail it asap. It's a little nerve wracking to think of it- sailing our boat for the first time and hoping it goes well. The owner actually ran it aground and we ran out of fuel on our sea trial. So we are just a little shy about it now after experiencing that. We have some sailing experience, but only on OPB.
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Old 21-09-2014, 08:26   #12
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Formula "B". Best answer for mildew on fabrics. Non-bleaching, cheap, works on hard surfaces too. Beat commercial products in side-by-side testing.

One Penny Mildew Spray - Inside Practical Sailor Blog Article
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Old 21-09-2014, 08:28   #13
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Quote:
Originally Posted by sailcruiser View Post
For a dirty such as intracoastal smile on the waterline or bow (muddy stain) toilet bowl cleaner (outside not inside boat!)....
Diluted CLR is very effective on "smiles and rust stains. One less product to carry. Also does everything vinegar will do without the stink (lactic acid instead of acetic acid). Dilution rate varies by application, but generally considerably cheaper as diluted.
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Old 21-09-2014, 08:49   #14
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Well there are plenty more.

Kerosene in a trigger bottle makes a great degreaser. Warm the engine first. Spray. Wait 5 minutes then hose clean.

Windex does a great job on the dodger clears, compass and instruments.

If your deck is fiberglass then Comet powder and a stiff bristled brush will work on the worst stains.

Acetone will clean vinyl fenders. You should throw the rag away after use.

Use Collinite on stainless that is in good - medium shape and the 3M cream on anything with bad rust stains.

Paint thinner works on cleaning waterline stripes. It removes the old polish as well so you have to repolish soon after.
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Old 21-09-2014, 09:07   #15
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Re: Favorite cleaning products

Quote:
Originally Posted by savoir View Post
Well there are plenty more.

Kerosene in a trigger bottle makes a great degreaser. Warm the engine first. Spray. Wait 5 minutes then hose clean.

Windex does a great job on the dodger clears, compass and instruments.

If your deck is fiberglass then Comet powder and a stiff bristled brush will work on the worst stains.

Acetone will clean vinyl fenders. You should throw the rag away after use.

Use Collinite on stainless that is in good - medium shape and the 3M cream on anything with bad rust stains.

Paint thinner works on cleaning waterline stripes. It removes the old polish as well so you have to repolish soon after.
Sorry...

Do NOT keep Windex on a boat. Some helpful guest will try to use it on something they shouldn't. It is extremely bad for coated vinyl (dodger clears) and can ruin them in one application. I have done testing in cooperation with the 2 major makers. They have ad may bad expereinces with windex and other common spray glass cleaners. Ammonia is also big no-no. Read the instructions on the Strataglass or O'Sea web sites.

It is not good for most other plastics in the long term either. There are MANY better products for this application. Pledge either. They look good for a while, and then the coating peals or blotches.

While the post certainly has not experienced these problems, the manufacturers have. It is product specific and depends on frequency of use, I'm sure.

---

Paint thinner only works on water line stripes if...
a. The stain is only in the wax, which it removes.
b. The stain is oil.
If the stain is organic acid and rust based (normal), a weak acid cleaner is required to pull it out of the gel coat.
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