Once you find the perfect boat, you want it to remain perfect. It is vital that you take care of the body of the vessel, and this is achieved only by using top products. Finding the right products to protect the hull of your watercraft can feel like a big challenge.
What should you choose? How to recognize the best boat polish? How to choose the right type? Do you really need boat polish? How to apply it?
All these questions can confuse boat owners. Of course, our team at TheMarineMag has done some research, and we are going to introduce you to some new tips, valuable information, quick reminders, and boat polish reviews. Finding a reliable product can be a bit hard, but with some info, you will be able to choose the one which will suit your needs.
Best Boat Polish Comparison Chart
Meguiar’s Marine Fiberglass Restoration System
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303 UV Protectant
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3M Marine Aluminum Restorer & Polish
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Meguiar’s Marine One-Step Compound
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Flitz Green Metal, Plastic, and Fiberglass Polish
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Meguiar’s Marine Polish & Gloss Enhancer
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Presto Gelcoat Rejuvenator by Protech Polymer Products, Ltd.
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Best Boat Polish Products on the Market (Editor’s Picks)
We can’t help you only by explaining how to polish your boat. You would also want to find the most exceptional product, and this is why we have compiled our extensive reviews. Use them as a guideline and keep in mind that the products are not arranged in any specific order.
1. Meguiar’s Marine Fiberglass Restoration System
Is your prized possession showing signs of wear and tear due to excessive exposer to harsh marine weather? Then it is time to give some love and bring back the shine. Meguiar’s M4965 is a great choice as it offers a specialized 3 steps restoration system.
So what do you get? First, the Maguiar’s Oxidation Remover will get rid of the water spots, mild oxidation, and scratches while restoring color that will leave your boat shiny and glossy. The High Gloss Polish will further enhance shine by giving an even coating of polish. Lastly, Maguiar’s Pure Wax, which contains a blend of pure Brazilian Carnauba Wax, will prevent your boat from the damages caused by UV rays and also provides long-lasting protection against oxidation and fading. Thus it is a perfect combo to give your boat an excellent treatment.
Each bottle contains 16 ounces and can be applied by hand or with a buffer.
- Restores fiberglass and gel coat
- Long-lasting protection
- Brilliant shine and gloss
- Wax takes time to dry
- Not sufficient enough to tackle heavy oxidation
- To complete the 3-step will be time-consuming
2. 303 UV Protectant
This water-based protectant can do wonders for your boat. As boats are constantly exposed to the sun, the paint is bound to fade, and the surface tends to crack. This is when 303 (30320) protectant comes in to rescue your boat and bring back the shine and gloss it deserves. While restoring the faded color, it repels dust and stains making the boat look new for a longer time.
The formula is not limited to fiberglass and gel coat, but it can also treat rubber, finished leather, vinyl, plastic or PVC. This means that from a single bottle, you can treat both the interior and exterior surfaces of your boat.
The product is 100% free of grease-producing silicone oils and petroleum distillates, which means that you can attain a non-greasy dry matte finish. You can do the treatment in no time by using a spray bottle. It needs no rinsing with water giving you ample time to enjoy the new beautiful boat.
- Restores faded color
- Repel dust and stains
- No odor
- Cannot be used for unfinished leathers and fabrics
- Not suitable for floors as it will be slippery
3. 3M Marine Aluminum Restorer & Polish
It is inevitable for the aluminum to lose its luster over time, leaving the boat looking old and dull. 3M (09020) marine polish is specifically intended to be used on aluminum surfaces such as the hardware deck, entire hull, rails, ladder, and more. It is an effective formula that can remove heavy oxidation and chalking from bare or painted aluminum bringing back the original color and luster. Having said that, to be at a safe side, it is advisable to test on a small area if intended to use on painted aluminum.
The 3M marine polish is a concentrated formula, and so a small amount can effectively remove a lot of oxidation and stains. It will restore the original color leaving a shiny aluminum surface.
The formula is rinse-free and can be applied by hand or a buffer. Machine application tends to give a better result, and when applied by hand, you might need continuous scrubbing.
- Effectively removes heavy oxidation and chalking
- Concentrated formula
- Formulated specifically for aluminum
- Doesn’t feature a protectant
- Needs excessive scrubbing which is tiring and time-consuming
- Not suitable for anodized aluminum surfaces
4. Meguiar’s Marine One-Step Compound
Meguiar’s M6732 can bring back life to your boat in a single easy step. This means that the formula can do both compounding and polishing in one step which will consume less time and minimal effort. It is an aggressive polish that can restore the neglected part of the boat yet quite safe that you can use regularly.
This formula is specifically designed to clean fiberglass and gel coating surfaces. It is quite effective in removing heavy oxidation, water spots, stains, and scratches. What you get as an end result are restored color and rich gloss.
You can achieve a great result with a buffer, and when applied by hand, you might require elbow grease. It is worth mentioning that the formula tends to get dry rather quickly. While the polish is competent to restore color and luster, it lacks a protective feature to prevent the acquired end result to last long. If you want to avoid future damage, you might need an additional product such as a protectant or sealant.
- Restore color by removing heavy oxidation
- Versatile formula
- Reasonably priced
- Dries quickly
- No protectant to prevent future damage
5. Flitz Green Metal, Plastic, and Fiberglass Polish
If you are looking for a polish to refresh your boat, you might want to consider Flitz LQ 04506 liquid formula which is non-toxic. It is an all-purpose polish and cleaner. And so suitable to use for polishing all metals, fiberglass, plastic, and painted surfaces.
Boats are frequently exposed to the harsh marine weather making it vulnerable to oxidation, rusting, and chalking. By using this formula, you can get rid of oxidation, rust stain, water spots, heat discoloration, and more. The polish is a concentrated liquid formula and goes three times farther than other liquids allowing you can use it sparingly.
The application is relatively easy and works faster compared to another formula. All you need is a soft cloth and some elbow grease. It also works well when applied with a buffer. The only precaution you might need to take is not to let it get dry.
- Non-toxic, eco-friendly formula
- All-purpose polish
- Works faster than most method
- Comparatively more expensive
- Tends to leave residue
6. Meguiar’s Marine Polish & Gloss Enhancer
Does your boat lacks shine and gloss even after removing oxidation, water spots, and rust? Then you will appreciate Meguiar’s M4516 high gloss polish as it gives you the shine and gloss you seek. This is because the formula contains rich polishing oils that feed and nourish fiberglass and gel coat surfaces to attain high-gloss finish.
The gloss enhancer can be used on all fiberglass and painted surfaces of a boat but mainly works work on dark colors. The application can be made by both hand and machine to achieve an effective result. Some reviews have mentioned that the gloss enhancer dries quickly and so it is advisable to apply it under the shade to avoid any inconvenience.
It is worth noting that the formula is not a cleaning agent and will not be able to remove oxidation nor stain. Its sole purpose is to enhance gloss and shine on the polished and clean surfaces.
- Restore brilliant gloss on fiberglass and painted surfaces
- Especially effective on dark colors
- Can be used on painted surfaces
- Dries fast
- Might not be suitable for lighter colors
7. Presto Gelcoat Rejuvenator by Protech Polymer Products, Ltd.
This is perhaps the most expensive polish you will find in the market. However, there is less chance for you to regret choosing Presto. This is because, from a single bottle, you will not only be able to restore faded color from the oxidized fiberglass and gel coat but also protect from future UV damages.
The weathering effect creates microscopic pores on the gel coating surfaces of a boat. This results in discoloration and fading. Presto penetrates these pores and fills them, bringing back the original color and gloss. On top of that, it effectively prevents further damage by protecting it from harmful UV rays, thanks to the UV activated polymer technology.
Presto is quite durable and will last for years. This means that your boat will not need treatment every season, saving you time and energy.
You will need less time to refresh your boat with this gel coat rejuvenator as it is easy to apply. A little Presto goes a long way as the 4 oz bottle can cover up to 400 sq feet.
- Rejuvenate oxidized gel coat, fiberglass, and plastic
- 100% UV block
- Cannot be used as a cleaning formula
What Is a Boat Polish?
Polishing is not actually coating the boat, as it is popularly believed. In reality, the pitted surface is removed. Both compounds of polish and buffing are abrasives. By removing imperfections, discoloration, and scrapes from the surface, they restore the shine of the fiberglass gel coat of the boat, enhancing the body shine and its original lively look.
This high gloss of the paint of the sailboat is maintained by pure polish overcoated with wax. If you are asking yourself, “Why polishing your boat is important?” we have the answer you are searching for!
The boat polish is a synthetic mix that is very similar to wax. It is mostly used on new boats or after the oxidation has been removed from older ones. The polish blocks UV light prevents damages caused by it and makes the surface of the vessel non-stick. Everybody needs their boat to look extraordinary, and using a boat polish will take it back to how it was when you first bought it.
However, polishing also involves protecting your boat from the elements. Stains, corrosion, and oxidation can build up, which can become a much bigger problem. These issues need to be treated accordingly.
If your gel coat is in good condition, you would want to spend time keeping it in the same state all through the season. Maintenance of essential gel coat starts with waxing and/or polishing. What is the difference between polish and wax? All quality boat waxes are designed to protect and seal the gel coat with a coating that repels the sun’s harmful rays, water, dirt, salt and. Polishes, on the other hand, usually contain a cutting agent to remove the gel coat’s oxidation and shine.
Due to the intense sun and the impact of UV rays, the paint of the hull begins to matt over time. If you want your yacht always to look new, it is advisable that you polish it once a year. This creates a UV filter and slows down the aging of paint over time. Polishing should be done with professional machines and pastes from trained people. For maximum effect, the outside temperature and body temperature are determined.
Benefits Of Using Boat Polish?
Of course, it is essential to know some of the main benefits of using one or another product. Let’s take a quick look at the benefits of the boat polish.
- UV light protection – Most boats live a life under the sun. That means that they are exposed to long-term sun damage. Adding a ship polish coat will help prevent UV damage and preserve your vessel’s exterior color and quality.
- Retention – Using boat polish will ensure that you enjoy the boat longer. Not only will it protect the color and the deck, but it will also give the vessel shine and prettier look.
- Marine environment – Boat polishes are uniquely designed to resist the situation in the water. They will save the wood from corrosion and the sometimes harmful contact with the water.
There is a big difference between a boat and a car polish. Using a bottle of polish that you have on your boat for your car may be tempting. However, you will struggle to cut the defects with most automotive polishes into the fiberglass or gel coat surface. A much better experience will be provided by the use of a specific boat polish designed for the marine environment.
Polishing your boat may be a time-consuming task, but you can achieve impressive results with the right boat polish and technique.
Types of Boat Polish
The boat polish is categorized into three types – gel coat, fiberglass, and aluminum. Here is some more information about these kinds of polish.
- Aluminum is durable and quickly resists polishing. You need to find a product which will work for this material. Make sure that you first clean your aluminum boat thoroughly to prepare it for polish properly. That means washing up debris and clearing off any dust that may have been collected. Then gently buff the surface and apply the product.
- Fiberglass – here the steps are almost the same, but you should check if the polish is made for this material.
- Gelcoat – The polishes made for gel coat are more abrasive than the others. Using them with other materials can be pretty dangerous, because they may get damaged.
There are also some products which work for more than one surface.
Like every other product, you have already chosen to maintain the coating of your boat, the boat polish should be selected carefully. Here you can have a look at the most essential features of the boat polish.
- The polish must be specially made for boats. You should not use car polish. It is not resistant to the marine environment, and it will not protect the surface of the vessel from the negative influence of the water.
- Adaptability – While the hull of a boat will generally be made all the way through from the same material, there may be various types of surface on your sailboat that you would want to polish. Boats usually have metal, gel coat, fiberglass or painted surfaces, and all of these materials require different treatments. If you have more than one element on your vessel, choosing a versatile polish, which can be used with all of them, can save you money and time.
- UV protection – It is essential to look for this feature. If the polish is not UV-resistant, it will not keep the surface, and the facade will be damaged from the direct sunlight.
How to Use The Boat Polish?
Polishing the sailboat can be hard, but here are some tips for applying the polish and some easy steps on how to wax your favorite boat.
- First of all, check the instructions. They will give you useful information.
- Clean the surface, which you are going to polish. It should have no dirt or dust.
- Use a buffer to smooth the deck.
- Clean it again from the dust.
- Apply the boat polish, as the instructions tell you to.
Depending on the size of your boat, applying boat polish can be very tiring. It is therefore recommended that you use a top boat buffer to apply the polish as it will make it easier to cover more of the surface and cut it into the fiberglass or gel coat.
There is no reason, of course, why you can’t use your hand to apply the polish. For those tricky to reach areas, some people may use both a machine and hand polishing. If you’ve got a big boat, however, it will take a lot of time and effort.
Now we are introducing you to some tips on choosing and applying the boat polish to your vessel.
- Always check the type of boat polish.
- Follow the instructions when applying it.
- Clean the deck of the watercraft before starting.
- Take a look at the features of the polish. Some of the essential characteristics of the product should be UV-resistance and marine application.
- Use glasses and gloves while working with the polish.
- Be aware of the time. Polishing your vessel can take you a lot of time.
- You will need the right equipment: Not only will this save you some time, but it will also produce a better finish. You will become more experienced with practice, however, so don’t expect that you will achieve a perfect finish the first time you do this.
- To eliminate old polish and dirt and grime, use strong detergent.
- When you are ready with the polish, allow some time for it to dry.
- After the polish dries, rewash it with some water and mild soap.
Well done, you have already read our buying guide, and now you know how to find the best boat polish. You know how to choose the right type of polish, what you should be looking for when you are buying one, and how to apply it. With the list of boat polish reviews, we arranged for you, and with all the information you have, we are pretty sure that you will get what you are looking for.
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We hope that you find this text interesting. If you have some more time to check our other articles – you can find information about all the marine supplies you need.