Proper care and cleaning of your boat cover or top is important for maintaining it's appearance and durability. Refer to these tips on use, storage and care of your cover to help ensure it will serve you for years to come.
Sunbrella® (click here to see full article)
To help keep dirt and grime from becoming deeply embedded in the fabric and to delay deep cleanings, hose your cover off monthly and air dry. A thorough cleaning should be done every two or three years. Size permitting, covers can be put in a washing machine, using a natural soap (like Lux or Ivory) and cold to lukewarm water, and air dry. Never use a dryer. Clean large covers, or tops with plastic windows, while on the boat. Brush off any loose dirt, prepare a cleaning mixutre using natural soap in a bucket, and use a soft-bristle brush to clean. Allow the soap to soak in, rinse thoroughly and air dry. Only after a thorough cleaning should a protectant be applied to your cover. Spray a thin coat of a silicone based sealant (such as AP Seal or 303 Fabric Guard) on the cover, allow to dry, then spray a second thin coat.
Boat Duck - 10oz. & 13oz.
(generally used for tie-down boat covers)
The best thing you can do for your boat duck fabric is to regularly hose it off with clear water. This will help prevent dirt from becoming embedded in the fabric. A soft-bristled brush may be used to help loosen tough areas. We do not recommend using soap or cleaners, however, as these may remove the waterproof finish. Should it become necessary to re-waterproof your cover, a commercial product such as Canvak may be used.
Covers and tops made from vinyl topping should be sprayed off with clean water on a regular basis. A vinyl cleaner such as Vinyl Kleen or a standard automotive vinyl cleaner and protectant may also be used.
Clear Plastic Windows
Tops with transparent plastic windows should be sprayed with clear water regularly. The windows should also be sponged off with soap and treated with a plastic cleaner/polish such as Plexus. This will seal the plasticizers in, which will help keep the window from becoming discolored or brittle.
General Information for your Marine Canvas
Mildew is your cover's worst enemy. Always allow your cover or top to thoroughly dry before storing it for an extended period of time. Mildew is always a result of negligence!
Always make sure your cover or top is securely fastened to the boat before traveling. A loose cover can easily tear in the wind and may void any warranty.
Don't put another cover or tarp on top of your boat cover. Doing so may trap moisture, causing mildew and corrosion. Also, the two covers rubbing together may wear holes in the inner cover.
You don't need to use a waterproofing or "Scotch Guard" spray on a new cover. It should have all the treatment it needs for several years. Refer to the cleaning section should waterproofing become necessary.
Warranties are contingent upon proper use and care of your top or cover. Failure to follow these guidelines may void the warranty.
Tie-down and Snap-on Boat Covers
Always keep your cover securely fastened while traveling. If any ropes or snaps come undone, stop and fasten them immediately.
Keep standing water off your cover. The fabric is water resistant, but not water proof. Puddled water may eventually soak through or stretch the fabric.
New tie-down full covers are made a bit large, allowing for some shrinkage. To prevent too much shrinkage, use the nylon rope provided (for at least the first season) and keep the cover tied tightly to the boat and trailer.
Snap-on covers are designed to fit snugly on the boat. Installing your cover as follows will help you do so with the least effort: First, fasten the front of the cover. Next, go to the back of the boat and fasten those snaps. Finally, fasten the snaps along the sides.
Bimini, Convertible, and Camper Tops
Always tow your boat with the tops laying down and secured, unless specifically designed to stand up while towing.
Although designed to be used on a moving boat, we do not recommend that tops be used at speeds above 35 mph in calm weather conditions. Personal injury or property damage may occur at higher speeds.
Boat tops with transparent plastic windows require special care and attention. When storing, they should always be rolled up instead of folded. Hard creases in the plastic can leave marks and may cause them to tear or crack.
Clear plastic windows should never be stored in direct sunlight. Do not leave them on a seat in the boat or anywhere else where the sun may hit them. Doing so may cause the plastic to fuse together and/or damage boat upholstery. Always store them in the shade!