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Stain & Discoloration Removal from Gelcoat

  Skipper

Boat Clean Plus
Technical Bulletin No. 106

Stain & Discoloration Removal from Gelcoat

Common Discoloration and Stains:
Algae (Waterline or Underwater) No. 101
Blood, Red Wine, Rust No. 102
Diesel (Waterline, Bow) No. 103
Graying No. 104
Soot No. 105
YELLOWING & STREAKING No. 106
Black Streaks No. 107

Causes Of Yellowing & Streaking:

Cleaners: Corrosive and bleach cleaners can chemically burn the gelcoat, resulting in both yellowing and streaking. Corrosive cleaners also etch the microscopic pores, enlarging them, making them more susceptible to dirt entrapment, which can appear as streaks, stains or graying.

Carnauba wax: reaction to sunlight. The natural yellow/brown stain in Carnauba wax, applied to the boat either as a protective polish or a mold release agent in manufacture, can be released by heat from infrared radiation, which stains gelcoat. This problem is greatest in tropical areas.

Chemical Reaction: with uncured or residual components of manufacture, such as styrene, and the atmosphere. This is a complex problem that is still not fully understood. The problem is superficial and can vary by geographic location and age. Not all boats are affected, even though they are the same model and manufactured at the same time from the same materials.

Stain Removal Procedure:

Products and Equipment Required:

· Aurora Boat Clean
· Aurora Boat Scrub
· Aurora Boat Shine
· Aurora Sure Step
· Garden hose with running water
· Scrubbing Cloth: Aurora Scrub Mitt or heavy Shop or Terry Towel or pieces of Carpeting
· Clean, dry, cotton cloths
· Scrub Brush or Deck Brush
· Sponge applicators
· Orbital Buffer (Optional) with Aurora Scrub Pad & hook & loop foam pad, lamb’s wool pads and foam pads.
· Medium bristled pot scrubber
· Medium bristled natural fiber scrub brush
· Variable speed drill
· Jewelers cotton rag wheel. 6” x ¾” or thicker

CAUTION: Boat Scrub contains optical brightiners and Hypexine, which is a leaching agent. Do not get Stain Removal Solution or Boat Scrub onto fabrics or clothing as it will remove color.

NOTE: Although both Boat Scrub and Boat Clean are Environment Friendly (Biodegradable), it is still recommended that boat cleaning be done on land, away from the waters edge as some of the pollutants from the boat may be injurious to marine life. Both products are Free Rinsing and when properly rinsed, will not leave a residue to impair the adhesion of protectants or polishes.

Stain Removal from Smooth Surfaces

Directions:

NOTE: Do not perform this procedure if the gelcoat surface is exceptionally hot from the sun or cold from freezing. If the surface is too hot, the product will evaporate and dry before it can be worked. If too cold, it will freeze onto the surface. The surface temperature of the boat may be different than the ambient temperature. A good test is to put your hand on the boat. If it is uncomfortably hot or cold, postpone the procedure until you have more favorable conditions, move the boat indoors or in the case of strong sun, protect the boat with shade.

1. Rinse surface with running water.

2. Wash the surface with a 1 to 4 solution of Aurora Boat Clean and water using a Scrubbing Cloth. Use aggressive scrubbing action with good pressure. Rinse well. This will remove dirt, pollutants, old wax, etc. to prevent them from being driven into the pores of the gelcoat during the stain removal process and will save time.

3. Mix a Stain Removal Solution of 1/2 Aurora Boat Clean to 1/2 Aurora Boat Scrub. The Boat Clean contains surfactants to reduce the surface tension of the mixture, allowing it to penetrate deep into the gelcoat pores. Boat Scrub contains optical brightiners and Hypexine to pull the stain out and enhance the brightness of the gelcoat.

4. To clean and remove stains from smooth surfaces, use a clean dry cotton cloth, folded into a pad. Wipe the Stain Removal Solution onto a convenient working area of about 18” x 18”. Using the cloth pad, scrub in a combination of horizontal, vertical, diagonal and circular motions, until the stain is removed. Use moderate pressure, turning the pad often, but keeping the pad wet with the solution. Move onto the next section and repeat, overlapping slightly. Each section should appear smooth, polished and stain free when you are done. When through, rinse well with running water while wiping the surface with a scrubbing cloth to make sure all residue is rinsed away. Wipe the surface with a synthetic Marine Chamois to eliminate water, and allow to air dry.

5. On large smooth surfaces, such as topsides, it may be desirable to use an orbital buffer with an Aurora Scrub Pad on a hook & loop foam pad or a lamb’s wool pad.

NOTE: Air powered or low voltage buffers are recommended to eliminate the possibility of shock from electrical buffers when it becomes wet with the Stain Removal Solution and water.

The use of buffers will throw the Stain Removal Solution. Be sure that it will not be thrown onto fabrics, such as canvas tops, dodgers, etc., or onto neighboring boats. Mask adjacent areas as required.

Wear face and eye protection and protective clothing.

Apply the Stain Removal Mixture to the pad and work a small section at a time. Keep the pad and surface wet with the solution and keep moving the buffer back and forth across the surface. Failure to follow these instructions will result in damage to the gelcoat. Overlap each section as you work. If the pad becomes clogged, remove and rinse with water. Ring out well, re-install and continue working. When finished, rinse well and dry, as above.

6. Inspect the surface and if any stains remain, repeat the process in those areas until all stain and streaks are removed.

7. Protect surface against stain reoccurrence. (Do not use Carnauba Wax.)

Protection with Aurora EZ Care Topside Treatment

The clean, stain free gelcoat needs to be sealed against the atmosphere, water and stain penetration and protected from UV. Otherwise, re-occurrence of the staining or streaking may occur in a short time, requiring removal again.

Application of 2 coats of Aurora Boat Shine will make the topsides Low Maintenance for up to a full season. Boat Shine is a synthetic polish and does not contain Carnauba Wax so it will not yellow. It puts a diamond hard, anti-static finish on the hull that will not soften and become greasy when exposed to the sun, like natural waxes. It resists, rather than attracts, dust and dirt attachment. Aurora Boat Shine is self polishing and easy to apply. It can be applied by hand or with an orbital buffer.

This is an excellent time to apply the Aurora EZ Care Topside Treatment because all the difficult prep work has already been done.

Directions:

NOTE: Do not apply Boat Shine if the gelcoat surface is exceptionally hot from the sun or cold from freezing. If the surface is too hot, the product will evaporate and dry before it can be worked. If too cold, it will freeze onto the surface. The surface temperature of the boat may be different than the ambient temperature. A good test is to put your hand on the boat. If it is uncomfortably hot or cold, postpone the procedure until you have more favorable conditions, move the boat indoors or in the case of strong sun, protect the boat with shade.

1. To apply by hand, use a sponge. Wet the sponge and ring out the water until it is only damp. Apply the Boat Shine to the sponge and rub into the surface using a circular motion and moderate pressure. When the polish dries to a haze, wipe away the haze with a terry towel or other soft, absorbent, cotton cloth, turning the cloth often. After a minimum of 24 hours, but within 14 days, apply a 2nd coat.

2. BUFFER OPTION: To apply with a low speed orbital buffer, use a sponge pad. Apply the Boat Shine to the pad and work it into the gelcoat using a circular motion. When the polish dries, wipe away the haze with a soft absorbent cotton cloth, turning often. The advantage of using a buffer is that you are able to spread the polish better and use less material. You can also apply greater pressure to increase penetration into the gelcoat. After wiping the haze from the 2nd coat with a terry towel, buffing with a clean lamb’s wool pad will enhance the shine. Mechanical application and buffing will extend the longevity of the Boat Shine.

Two coats of Boat Shine, properly applied, will keep the hull of the boat shiny and protected for up to a full season.

Maintenance:

1. In most cases rinsing with fresh water is all that is required to maintain the topsides.

2. If washing is required, for example to remove salt water spots, atmospheric fallout etc., we recommend using a solution of 1 part Boat Clean to 15 parts water and a cotton mop, soft cotton cloth or sponge. Wet down the surface with a hose and then wash the surface with the Boat Clean solution. After washing, rinse well and dry with a synthetic Marine Chamois. This concentration will not strip the polish.

3. In the event of heavy soiling such as soot, dried on bird poop, insects, etc. spray Aurora Boat Clean, full strength, onto the dirt and allow to work for 15 to 20 minutes, agitating it from time to time. In most cases, light scrubbing with a scrub cloth or rinsing with a garden hose will lift the dirt. When Boat Clean is used full strength, it will remove the polish. Rinse well and when dry, re-apply one coat of Boat Shine to the stripped area.

4. In the event of scuffing or ground in soil, use Boat Scrub, full strength on a soft, clean cloth and rub out the scuff or grime. Rinse and dry. This will also strip the polish, which must be re-applied, to the stripped area.

Stain Removal from Textured Non-Skid Surfaces.

Directions:

NOTE: Do not perform this procedure if the gelcoat surface is exceptionally hot from the sun or cold from freezing. If the surface is too hot, the product will evaporate and dry before it can be worked. If too cold, it will freeze onto the surface. The surface temperature of the boat may be different than the ambient temperature. A good test is to put your hand on the boat. If it is uncomfortably hot or cold, postpone the procedure until you have more favorable conditions, move the boat indoors or in the case of strong sun, protect the boat with shade.

CAUTION: Do not use a scrub brush or deck brush on smooth gelcoat or paint, as it will scratch the surface.

1. Rinse surface with running water.

2. Wash the textured surface with a 1 to 4 solution of Aurora Boat Clean and water using a Scrub or Deck Brush. Rinse well. This will remove dirt, pollutants, old wax, etc. to prevent them from being driven into the pores of the gelcoat during the stain removal process and will save time.

3. Mix a Stain Removal Solution of 1/3 Aurora Boat Clean to 2/3 Aurora Boat Scrub. The Boat Clean contains surfactants to reduce the surface tension of the mixture, allowing it to penetrate into the gelcoat pores. Boat Scrub contains optical brightiners and Hypexine to pull the stain out and enhance the brightness of the gelcoat. This mixture will also remove oxidized gelcoat, without harming the integral gelcoat.

4. To clean and remove stains from textured, non-skid surfaces, apply some of the Stain Removal Solution to the textured surface and scrub horizontally, vertically and diagonally with a Scrub or Deck Brush, until the stain is removed. Do this in sections so that the Solution does not dry before proceeding to the next section. Rinse well with running water while scrubbing lightly with the scrub brush to remove all residue. If any of the Solution dries on the surface, it can be reactivated with water and rinsed away. Dry with a synthetic Marine Chamois. If surface is aggressive (tears chamois) pat dry.

Mechanical scrubbers do not improve speed or performance for this operation.

5. Inspect the surface and if any stains remain, repeat the process in those areas until all stain and streaks are removed.

6. Protect surface against stain reoccurrence.

Protection with Aurora EZ Care Deck Treatment

The clean, stain free gelcoat needs to be sealed against the atmosphere, water and stain penetration, and protected from UV, otherwise re-occurrence of the staining or streaking may occur in a short time, requiring removal again.

Application of 2 coats of Aurora Sure Step will make the decks Low Maintenance for up to 6 months. (Less if the decks are subject to heavy traffic or if the boat is in the tropics, longer if the boat is covered when not in use.) Sure Step protects the decks against UV damage, water and stain penetration, ozone, acid rain, suntan oil, pollution and atmospheric fall out. The decks will remain shiny and slick to dirt. Scrubbing and aggressive cleansers are eliminated and maintenance normally consists of rinsing with a garden hose or washing with a mop and a diluted solution of Aurora Boat Clean and water.

Aurora Sure Step is a unique pressure sensitive polish that is very slick to dirt and grime, but not slippery to boaters. The boater’s weight creates pressure, which changes the co-efficient of friction, thereby increasing traction. Sure Step also contains Skid-X, which is a moisture sensitive polymer, that increases traction when the decks are wet.

Sure Step was invented to be used on non-skid surfaces however, many boat owners have found good success on smooth deck surfaces as well. It is becoming increasingly popular on smooth surfaces with racing sailboats, fishing boats, and high performance power boats. Although it does not increase the non-skid properties of smooth gelcoat or paint to any great extent, the benefit is that it does not diminish the traction the way that wax does, while it still protects the deck from UV, dirt, staining, etc.

This is an excellent time to apply the Aurora EZ Care Deck Treatment because all the difficult prep work has already been done.

Directions:

NOTE: Do not apply Sure Step if the gelcoat surface is exceptionally hot from the sun or cold from freezing. If the surface is too hot, the product will evaporate and dry before it can be worked. If too cold, it will freeze onto the surface. The surface temperature of the boat may be different than the ambient temperature. A good test is to put your hand on the boat. If it is uncomfortably hot or cold, postpone the procedure until you have more favorable conditions, move the boat indoors or in the case of strong sun, protect the boat with shade.

1. Sure Step has a gel consistency. To apply, use a damp sponge if the non-skid surface is not too aggressive (does not tear sponge when applying) or a medium bristled brush for more aggressive surfaces. If applying to the smooth sections of the deck, do not use a brush for application. Use a damp sponge only.

2. Wet the sponge and ring out the water until it is only damp. Dip the sponge or the brush into the gel and rub into the surface using a circular motion and moderate pressure. Sure Step works best when applied in a thin coat and is well rubbed into the surface, so try to spread it out as much as possible. On older, unprotected surfaces that have been scrubbed and exposed to the elements, you will find that the first coat soaks into the surface to reseal the open pores and coverage will not be as great.

3. When the Sure Step dries to a haze, wipe away the haze with a terry towel from smooth surfaces and less aggressive non-skid surfaces. Turn the towel often to expose a fresh clean surface. If the non-skid surface is too aggressive (tears the towel) use a medium bristled brush to remove the haze.

4. Then use a medium bristled brush like a natural bristled scrub brush to remove the haze from the indentations and crevices in the surface.

If Sure Step is applied too heavily, the haze will remain sticky and be difficult to remove. Extra rubbing with a brush and cloth will be required to get the surface smooth and shiny.

5. After a minimum of 24 hours, but within 14 days, apply a 2nd coat.

6. After the haze from the 2nd coat has been removed use a clean jewelers cotton rag wheel on a variable speed drill and polish the surface, to a hard, anti-static shine. Use the edge of the wheel. The speed of the drill should be between 300 and 600 rpm. Larger and wider rag wheels will reduce polishing time. Excessive speed may cause friction burns to the surface.

Maintenance:

3. In most cases rinsing with fresh water is all that is required to maintain the decks.

4. If washing is required, for example to remove salt water spots, fish blood, atmospheric fallout etc., we recommend using a solution of 1 part Boat Clean to 15 parts water and a cotton mop. Wet down the surface with a hose and then wash the deck with the mop and Boat Clean solution. After washing, rinse well and dry with a synthetic Marine Chamois. This concentration will not strip the polish.

5. In the event of heavy soiling such as soot, dried on bird poop, dried fish blood, insects, etc. spray Aurora Boat Clean, full strength, onto the dirt and allow it to work for 15 to 20 minutes, agitating it from time to time. In most cases, light scrubbing with a scrub cloth or rinsing with a garden hose will lift the dirt. When Boat Clean is used full strength, it will remove the polish. Rinse well and when dry, re-apply one coat of Sure Step to the stripped area.

6. In the event of scuffing or ground in soil, use Boat Scrub, full strength on a soft, clean cloth and rub out the scuff or grime. Rinse and dry. This will also strip the polish, which must be re-applied, to the stripped area.

7. If the Sure Step begins to wear and lose its properties due to heavy traffic or tropical sun, wash the deck with a solution of 1 part Boat Clean to 4 parts water. Remove scuffs and ground in dirt with Boat Scrub. Rinse well and dry. Apply a booster coat of Sure Step following the Directions above.

Recommendation:

After stain removal is completed, the boat owner should be encouraged to use Aurora Boat Clean and Boat Scrub to clean their boat and Aurora Boat Shine and Sure Step to polish and protect it when required. If the boat is maintained this way, the staining or streaking will never reoccur.

To keep the finish of the boat shiny and new looking, a complete stripping of the old polish and reapplication of 2 coats of new polish is recommended each Spring and Fall.


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