Wax/UV protectant for Gelcoat?

Do any of you use a UV protectant/wax on your composite/gelcoat boats?

If so, what have you had success with? Formula 303 isn’t very longlasting… great for hot tub covers though!

I used to be a big fan of Meguiars’ products on my Porsche, and they have a Marine Wax…

(from the website:)

“Dramatically enriches color and shine of fiberglass and gel coat surfaces. Effective in removing light oxidation and dullness, restoring gloss, and adding protection from UV damage. *Use wax only after the surface has been cleaned and restored to a “like new” or “average” finish.”

I would assume that most any Marine UV wax would work, but thought some of you might have a favorite…

I use whatever car/marine wax is lying around. once a year whether it needs it or not.


I use the Meguiars marine kit on my canoe and it’s good stuff. Keeps my boat looking good. Kit has wax, detergent, detailer, and applicator.


Good stuff
I too like the Meguiars marine waxes and polishes for composite boats.

I’m not sure, but I suspect the 303 is not absorbed by ‘hard’ plastics like gelcoat, and soon washes off during use, so I do not use it on hulls. ‘Soft’ plastics such as rubber and vinyl hatch covers, PFDs, wet- and drysuits will hold the 303 longer and benefit from its UV protection.

Here are some additional ideas on boat and gear maintenance:


Good Luck!



I’ve used this wax

I’ve heard some power boat owners say two coats lasted over six months and it protects against UV.

3M 09030 "ultra performance paste wax"
Claims to have special ability to bond to plastic surfaces, but who’s to know?

I intend to start using it on my Royalex boats as well as on my composite boats.

i use it, it is great

– Last Updated: May-06-09 12:47 PM EST –

I have used it for a year and it is genuine article. It does last quite awhile and has the advantage stated below.

Contains the unique 3M polymer technology which provides the durability of an acryllic with the soil release and water beading properties of a fluoropolymer and silicone. The easy on/off formula will save time and effort and leave your boat with long lasting protection that retards UV light damage.

Star Brite Premium Marine Polish is the other product that many have used over time and found to be long lasting and protective

Flatpick, does a auto wax like Turtle Wax Carnauba Cleaner Wax also work for gel coat? I use on my car and have it laying around. Might do some wax/clean this weekend.

another vote for Meguiar’s nfm

look at the ingredient of ‘car’ wax and ‘marine’ wax.

they are pretty close to the same with the carauba wax being the main component.

anything ‘marine’ will be more $$$


Thanks! nmsg

Royalex Care
If you want your Royalex boat to look pretty, try some Mothers brand “Back-to Black”. Found at many auto supply stores for around $7. Used to restore color to faded auto trim. Alcohol based. Works great on your vehicle too. Will be kind of slippery afterwards but tends to go away after a while.


FG protector
I just use FP 303, usually about monthly, only takes maybe 15 minutes to do the whole boat.

Bill H.

same as auto

– Last Updated: May-07-09 9:11 AM EST –

The recommended choices are as confusing as automobile protectorants. Some suggest the traditional Carnuba waxes are best. Some feel wax is inferior to polishes like Nu-finish. Then there are the newer polymer higher-tech waxes. There are even $80 polishes in kits from small private companies. Of course the majority of folks I know don't do anything themselves and just select whatever protectorant the drive thru car wash offers.

Perhaps I can just drive thru with kayak on car. :) and maybe 303 protectorant is an option to get sprayed on the hatch covers!

being in water and UV
Properly protected FG on commercial and recreation boats can last 25 years. So this does matter. Of course we don’t subject the kayaks to nearly this total exposure. In those cases there is oxidation, and thus the need for remedy products.

So mostly what is needed from FG experts I have talked with is something that STAYS on. These folks were higher on the 3M and Starbrite stuff for that reason. The other products listed here might be just as good, but they were not as tested by these folks. Carnuba wax is famous rightly for when you want a show appearance and no scratches on infamously fragile lacquer painted cars. Does not apply so much here. And skip the $80 stuff imo.