How to Clean Boat Carpet
Understanding how to clean boat carpeting properly can help you maintain your boat interior and extend your carpet's longevity. Boat carpet is durable and water-resistant enough to withstand frequent foot traffic, moisture and spills, but it requires some maintenance. Cleaning the carpet can improve your boat's appearance and aroma, and it can prevent mold growth. Learn how to clean your boat's carpeting to keep it in excellent shape.
Benefits of Cleaning Your Boat's Carpet
Cleaning a boat's carpeting offers the following benefits:
- Longevity: Your boat's carpeting and other interior elements will last longer when you regularly clean the carpet because cleaning prevents mold growth.
- Savings: You can replace your carpet less often when you maintain it properly, allowing you to save money.
- Improved appearance and odor: A clean carpet enhances your boat interior's appearance and helps it maintain a pleasant smell.
What You Need to Clean Boat Carpeting
Cleaning the carpeting of a boat requires the following supplies:
- Cloths or paper towels
- Water and a spot removal solution such as soap, vinegar, baking soda, mold remover or a multi-purpose cleaner
- Carpet cleaning solution
- Cleaning brush
- A hose or bucket
- Wet vacuum or a trailer to park your boat on an incline
How to Clean Boat Carpet
Boat interiors contain marine carpet, which is typically made of solution-dyed propylene to make the fibers water and stain-resistant. Boat carpeting can withstand extensive foot traffic, moderate moisture and spills. Cleaning this type of carpet requires a specific cleaning process to maintain its appearance, durability and resistance.
The best way to clean boat carpeting is to remove stains, apply a carpet cleaning solution and rinse and dry it thoroughly. Clean your boat's carpet with the following steps:
1. Remove Loose Particles
Vacuum your boat carpet before completing a deep clean. Walking over loose particles and dirt can embed them deep into carpet fibers and eventually cause stains, so removing particles is essential. Use a strong vacuum to suction as much dirt as you can before continuing to the next step.
2. Address Stains
Treat stains and spills immediately or as soon as possible to increase your chances of removing them completely. Blot the affected area with a dry cloth or paper towel to absorb excess liquid from wet spills, or use a vacuum to suction excess particles from a dry stain.
Use a wet, cold towel to rinse the area before blotting it dry with another towel. Using cold water is crucial because hot water can worsen a stain and make it permanent. After blotting the area, spot clean with one of the following methods:
- Natural solution: A simple vinegar and water mixture can remove mild stains from carpeting. To create this solution, fill a spray bottle halfway with water and halfway with vinegar. Spray this mixture onto the stained area and let it soak into the carpet fibers. Scrub the area with a bristle brush before rinsing the solution out of the carpet with a wet towel and blotting it dry.
- Soap and water: Mild dish soap and cold water can remove some stains. To use this method, apply soap and water to the stained area and let it soak before blotting it with a soft sponge or cloth.
- Spot removal solution: A special spot remover such as BoatLIFE Carpet Spot Remover can remove stains without creating an unwanted residue. This type of spot remover fully dries, so you can vacuum excess soil and enjoy a clean carpet.
- Multi-purpose cleaning solution: Multi-purpose cleaning solutions such as Marine Spray Nine work on several different types of surfaces. Keeping a multi-purpose spray on deck lets you clean more surfaces with fewer sprays and solutions. Marine Spray Nine is a disinfectant and cleaner that can eliminate stains and bacterial odors while preventing mold and mildew.
- Mold and mildew stain remover: A mold and mildew stain solution such as Mildew Stain Away targets mold and mildew stains specifically. You can apply Mildew Stain Away to fabric surfaces such as carpeting to remove stains and prevent mold from returning.
- Baking soda: Baking soda is an excellent supplemental cleaning supply. Lightly mist the entire carpet or a stained area with cold water and sprinkle baking soda over it generously. It absorbs stains and odors as it sits, so leave it on the carpet for at least three hours and then suction it with a vacuum. Let it sit overnight before vacuuming for the best results.
3. Clean the Entire Carpet With a Carpet Cleaner Solution
After removing noticeable particles, stains and odors, you can clean the carpet using soap and water or a standard carpet cleaning solution such as Marine Spray Nine mentioned above. You should always follow the directions on your chosen cleaning solution's bottle, but most cleaning solutions will instruct you to apply the solution and scrub the carpet with a stiff-bristle brush.
4. Rinse the Soap or Solution Out of the Carpet
After scrubbing the carpet, you will need to saturate it using a hose or bucket to rinse out the soap or solution. The easiest way to complete this step is to park your boat trailer on an incline if possible. Parking at this angle allows the water to drain from the carpet and onto the ground via gravity. You can also use a wet vacuum to suction water out of the carpet if you are unable to place your boat at an angle.
5. Dry the Area
Allowing the area to dry is the final step of the boat cleaning process. Moisture facilitates mold growth, so letting the carpet dry as fast as possible helps prevent this growth. You can turn the boat's air conditioning system on and operate fans to accelerate the drying process. Avoid walking across the area until it is completely dry to prevent new particles or substances from settling into the wet carpet.
It's also important to avoid covering the carpet until it is dry. Leaving the area open to dry protects it from mold and mildew growth, so keep all furniture and other objects off of the carpet until it fully dries.
Maintain a Clean Boat Carpet With Cleaning Solutions From Fawcett Boat Supplies
Cleaning your boat interior's carpet helps it last longer, smell fantastic and look like new. Regular cleaning also prevents mold and mildew growth, letting you replace your carpet less frequently and save money. Fawcett Boat Supplies offers a wide range of boat parts, tools and cleaning solutions to help you maintain your boat's beautiful craftsmanship and durability.
Browse our wide selection of cleaning supplies to keep your boat's carpet in excellent shape.