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Old     (turbojedi)      Join Date: Jun 2013       08-06-2014, 6:55 PM Reply   
I was wondering how you guys wash your boat covers .. I was thinking for using my front load washing machine ( hang dry ) with some chemical I got from a local upholstery shop that they suggested to use on the canvas.. What do you guys use or do.. ? Thanks and I have a snap on cover ..

Last edited by turbojedi; 08-06-2014 at 7:01 PM.
Old     (markj)      Join Date: Apr 2005       08-06-2014, 11:42 PM Reply   
I've only cleaned mine once in nine years. I just laid it out on the driveway, hosed it down, got a clean push broom and scrubbed a little with no soap. Then I hung it up as best I could until it stopped dripping. After that, I installed it on the boat and let it dry while it was installed on the boat as normal. It worked really well. Looked new again. Mine is all black and goes over the entire boat and tower. If you store yours outside, I'm sure some waterproofing like Skotchkote would be a good idea after its dry. My .02
Old     (williamburell)      Join Date: Sep 2011       08-07-2014, 3:54 AM Reply   
I clean mine every once in awhile with some mild dish soap if the birds decide to bomb the cover. I heard antibacterial soap destroys stitching and the waterproof properties of covers but have nothing to back that up but regardless I avoid them and harsh cleaners. Then hit it with some starbrite waterproofer once a year.
Old     (phillywakeboarder)      Join Date: Sep 2008       08-07-2014, 7:20 AM Reply   
Yeah, if you go to the trouble of cleaning it, definitely take the next step and waterproof it as well. I cleaned mine at a car wash and then treated it with PTEF waterproofing and I can't believe the difference it made. Water rolls off like a just waxed car.
Old     (turbojedi)      Join Date: Jun 2013       08-07-2014, 10:21 AM Reply   
Thanks guys I will for sure water proof it after I wash it..
Old     (trayson)      Join Date: May 2013       08-07-2014, 10:39 AM Reply   
I took mine to a commercial machine at a local laundramat. The biggest one they had. Took like $5 or $6 in quarters. I didn't bother using their dryer. Just laid it out.

I "washed" it with either some convertible top cleaner from my BMW or maybe I used some 303 protectant...

It came out looking so much cleaner. it's amazing the dirt they absorb.

Then I treated it with the 303 Fabric Guard after it dried.
Old     (illkid)      Join Date: Sep 2006       08-07-2014, 12:02 PM Reply   
Try dragging it behind your boat in a nice clean lake lol. There should be plenty of crystal clear water over in the Spokane area. But seriously I bet it might work...
Old     (grant_west)      Join Date: Jun 2005       08-07-2014, 3:22 PM Reply   
I have a low volume Pressure washer less then 1800 psi and then I use the tip with the least focused spray. I use for my Biminis and snap in carpets. Cleans the heck out of all that stuff. And YES if your a hammer head and you get the nozzle to close to the material you can damage it but if you use care it's a easy job.

Start by pressure wading your drive way and then lay your cover down and go to town. The get a few heavy duty clips or clamps and hang it from your gutters on your house sideways to let it air dry. Works like a charm.
Old     (carcrz)      Join Date: Mar 2006       08-10-2014, 1:31 PM Reply   
I saw a post somewhere a while back asking the same thing. One of the replies said to use a washing machine. I figured I'd take ours to the laundromat & it worked perfect!
Old     (bass10after)      Join Date: Feb 2010       08-10-2014, 4:58 PM Reply   
yea i think this came up a while back, i took mine to a laundromat and used the biggest machine they had. I used too much soap the first round so had to do a second round with no soap to get it out. I tried the hose and scrub method first, to me it was a waste of time and didn't come nearly as clean. I'm sure a pressure washer would have better results, but these machines do exactly what they're designed to. Clean.
Old     (norcalrider)      Join Date: Jun 2002       08-11-2014, 12:45 PM Reply   
This is what Sunbrella recommends:

To clean Sunbrella while still on a boat, follow these simple steps:

Brush off loose dirt.
Hose down.
Prepare a cleaning solution of water and mild soap such as Woolite or Dawn dishwashing liquid.
Use a soft bristle brush to clean.
Allow cleaning solution to soak into the fabric.
Rinse thoroughly until all soap residue is removed.
Air dry.
May not require re-treatment depending on the age of the fabric.
If stubborn stains persist, you can use a diluted bleach/soap mixture for spot cleaning of mildew, roof run-off or other similar stains (see our Stain chart for specific recommendations).

Heavy cleaning for stubborn stains and mildew
Sunbrella fabric does not promote mildew growth, however, mildew may grow on dirt and other foreign substances that are not removed from the fabric. To clean stubborn stains:

Prepare a solution of 1 cup bleach and 1/4 cup mild soap per gallon of clean water.
Soak affected area in solution for 15 minutes.
Remove stain with a sponge or clean towel.
Rinse thoroughly to remove all soap residue.
Air dry.
View the Sunbrella fabric Stain chart.

Remember to protect the area around your Sunbrella fabric if using a bleach solution. Carpet or other fabrics that are not Sunbrella may have an adverse reaction to the bleach.

If a boat cover is suitable in size for a washing machine, these steps should be followed:

Use mild soap.
For heavier stains add 1 cup of bleach to wash.
Wash and rinse in cold water.
Air dry. Never apply heat to Sunbrella.
Re-treatment for water and stain resistance will be necessary after machine washing.
Re-treating the fabric
As part of the finishing process, Sunbrella fabrics are treated with a fluorocarbon finish, which enhances water repellency. This finish is designed to last for several years, but must be replenished after a thorough cleaning. Based on test results,
Glen Raven recommends 303 Fabric Guard™ as the preferred re-treatment product for Sunbrella fabrics. Fabrics should be re-treated after thorough cleaning or after five years of use.

Applying 303 Fabric Guard
303 should be applied to Sunbrella fabrics after each thorough cleaning, which typically removes the original finish and reduces the fabric’s water repellency.

Clean Sunbrella fabric, using one of the cleaning methods.
Allow Sunbrella to completely air dry.
Apply 303 Fabric Guard in a well ventilated area following instructions on the container.
Apply 303 in a thin, even coat and allow fabric to dry completely.
Apply a second thin, even coating of 303. (Two light coatings are more effective in restoring fabric water resistance than a single heavy coating.)
Note: A 15-ounce bottle provides coverage of up to 50 square feet of fabric.
For more information, please visit

Professional cleaners
You may have access to professional cleaning firms. In evaluating the services of a professional firm, you should inquire about a firm’s experience in working with Sunbrella fabrics and knowledge of cleaning and re-treatment requirements. DO NOT dry clean Sunbrella fabrics.

Helpful hints
Protect the area around the Sunbrella fabric when using a bleach solution – bleach may discolor non-Sunbrella fabrics. Always rinse Sunbrella thoroughly to completely remove bleach.

Please be aware of the environment when cleaning with bleach. Bleach can have harmful effects on the natural environment around you. We do not advise using bleach if you are surrounded by a body of water or other environment that could be affected.

Sunbrella air dries very quickly. Machine drying is not necessary for Sunbrella fabrics.

If fabric has some wrinkling, use an iron, if necessary, but only on the synthetic setting. As some irons exceed the recommended temperature on the synthetic setting, test a small inconspicuous area before ironing entire piece.

DO NOT use a steamer or iron set to steam setting.

Use of bleach and/or advanced age of the fabric application may impact the deterioration of the sewing thread and other non-Sunbrella components.
Old     (turbojedi)      Join Date: Jun 2013       08-11-2014, 2:49 PM Reply   
Awesome that is very helpful thank you, I will wash it this weekend , we do not hit the lake on the weekends to many IDIOTS..


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