Just polished an older boat with some Starbrite Premium Boat Polish with Teflon. Then I read an article saying that waxes aren’t as good as polishes because “Sun melts it and makes it greasy, which attracts and holds dirt and black streaks. Stains. Heat releases the natural yellow / brown stain, which can stain your gelcoat. Difficult to apply. Requires aggressive buffing for best results. Limited life. Breaks down rapidly.” Goes on to recommend polishes but says to stay away from those with silicone or teflon (too late) because “although they are easy to apply and give an instant shine, they can cause irreparable damage to your boat. If ever you get a scratch or minor ding in your boat, it is impossible to touch up or repair since the gelcoat or paint will not stick to the Silicone or Teflon, lodged in you boats finish. To do the job requires complete removal by sanding or pealing and repair or replacement of the finish.” For what it’s worth, this is an internet article in “Captain’s Corner”, by Aurora who sells a product (Aurora Premium Boat Shine) they then go on to pitch. Anyway, wondering if anyone has additional input or recommendations. The guy I bought my new boat from uses Scotchgard Marine Liquid Wax so I had planned to get some of that but then read the above blurb that made me think I should go for polishes instead of waxes.
I’ve been using a floor wax with high carnuba wax content. Initially I purchased it to use on the tables of cast iron machine tools I own, but have since found many other uses. A tin is expensive but looks like it’ll last forever.
I agree 100% you should stay away from silicone and teflon. And frankly, I’d minimize the whole polishing/waxing thing until it actually needs it, not just to make a boat even shinier. Spend your time paddling, not polishing.
Scotchgard is great wax period. I use it on my boat. Last all season and more unless it’s a deck surface exposed to the sun. I tend to use 303 because it’s fast and easy. 303 you do have to worry about deck lines like wax which will turn white.
Meguiers Marine was is the one I use, only on the decks.
Wax no matter who makes it wont last very long. I haven’t used wax on my cars since 2001. I use klasse which is an ACRYLIC resin. I use it on my gel coated kayaks too. If you want the best get Klasse. there are other Acrylics out there and they might be as good or even better than Klasse but on my car in Buffalo NY it last the entire winter and we use a lot of road salt. Forget wax get an acrylic. Check out car detailing forums. Wax for protection isn’t any good. Wax has a deeper shine than Acrylics so car guys use both Klasse and a coat of wax over the top for the best possible deep shine. For a kayak use Klasse or something like it.
3m marine products are fine, but I would never use polish to clean a boat…only to remove fade…too much polish and you will start seeing the weave of the fiberglass.
If you are touching up any boat that has been waxed, or even a ding from a factory fresh boat, Wax or mold release compound has to be removed with a special solvent…Interlux makes one that won’t melt the gel coat.
Many waxes offer no UV protection what so ever…be sure to check.
When you do repair work on gel coat, you will need to strip the wax anyway and do a bit of sanding, Wiping the repair area with acetone just before applying gel coat should remove just about anything.
The manufacturer of my composite boat says they use plain old Turtle Wax.
We had a few scratches on a new carbon/Kevlar back before Wenonah bought out QCC, and one of the owners said to use “Gel-Gloss”
I found out that any wax with carnuba in it works great on my vehicles and all our boats. - Have been using it for any years