The Best Way To Clean Your Pontoon Carpet On A Budget

You want to maintain your pontoon’s deck looking brand new since it is the center of your on-the-water pleasure, right?

If your pontoon’s deck has carpets, cleaning it should be at the top of your priority list.

With wear and tear, the carpet is one of the first items on board to reveal its age. Wet feet, muddy footwear, spilt food and beverages, seawater splash, live bait, and fish guts all have an effect. However, keeping your pontoon carpet clean and squeaky does not have to be complicated. You also don’t have to replace the carpeting with vinyl.

You’ll find that keeping your pontoon carpets clean is easier than you think with these carpet cleaning methods.

The Importance of Keeping Your Pontoon Carpet Clean

Look. We’re all familiar with the term “carpet.” Here are some reasons why carpeting is so essential:

  • It will protect your deck.
  • It safeguards your deck.
  • It provides a sense of security.
  • It offers a lovely aesthetic.

A filthy, damaged carpet cannot fulfil the functions mentioned above. Â There are many more reasons to maintain the condition of your carpet:

  • It’s a bit pricey. (You don’t want to have to buy another one.)
  • It safeguards your deck. (Replacing the deck is costly.)
  • It increases the worth of your boat. (Cha-ching!)

What Can Ruin Your Pontoon Carpet

Your boat’s carpet is subjected to much wear and tear. Whether it’s dirt from human or pet feet, it adds up. Your carpet may take a beating from dirt and stains. They can not only make it appear ugly (or even disgusting), but they can also hold germs and mould that can make passengers sick and eat away at the carpet and deck. Yuck.

There’s also Mother Nature to consider. Your pontoon carpet is constantly exposed to rain and sun; if you don’t store it correctly in the winter, snow and ice may wreak havoc. I’m discussing issues like mould, mildew, moss, and fading.

The bottom line is that caring for your pontoon carpet can help it last longer, avoid mildew, and lower the risk of hazardous microorganisms. It can also help you keep or even raise the value of your boat. Who wants to purchase a secondhand pontoon boat with a filthy old carpet?

All of this implies that carpet cleaning should be performed regularly and correctly. But because no one likes cleaning, let’s make it as simple as possible.

What’s the Material of Your Pontoon Carpet?

First and foremost. Check the material of your carpet before washing it with anything, even water. What’s the material? Polyester fibres and fake grass are two of the most prevalent fabrics, which should be OK to wash with water and a carpet cleaner.

There are many additional factors to consider. Is there a marine-grade backing, a long-term UV protectant, or a mold/mildew sealer or protectant on your carpet?

You’re good to go if it has been treated with these things for a long time. Just check the sealers and protectants to ensure you don’t use chemicals that will negate their effects or lessen their effectiveness. If it hasn’t already been treated, you might consider doing so after cleaning.

Check your owner’s manual to avoid manufacturer issues

Regardless of whether you know the answers to the questions above, you must consult your owner’s handbook for carpet cleaning instructions.

After all, you don’t want to harm your carpet, remove critical sealants, or void your guarantee (no way!).

Your owner’s handbook may be your best friend, and that’s precisely why it’s there. Contact the manufacturer if you can’t locate it or have any more queries. The cleaners you pick may be influenced by the replies you receive.

What is the attachment method of your pontoon carpet to the boat deck?

This is something more that should be mentioned in your owner’s handbook.

In a single word, glue.

Your pontoon carpet will most likely be bonded to your deck. Here’s what you should know:

  • Is the carpet adhesive you’re using water-resistant?
  • Is it necessary to avoid particular cleaners or ingredients?
  • Is it possible that certain substances or cleansers could void your warranty?
  • How often should you clean your carpet?

Check through your owner’s manual once again. When in doubt, phone and inquire. It would help if you were sure about these matters.

The Best Way to Clean Your Pontoon Carpet

How to Remove Debris from Your Pontoon Carpet in Advance

Your pontoon deck is a hive of activity! It’s where all the action takes place. Even if your visitors are a generally neat and organized lot, when the party is done, there’s always garbage, grime, and debris all over the place.

Do the following first: Pick up and dispose of all rubbish. Empty cans, half-empty water bottles, cigarette butts (yes, you’ll need gloves) and any other conspicuous rubbish you encounter are examples.

Next, clear the area of any unsecured goods, such as chairs, coolers, umbrellas, and radios. Put them all in one spot, as far away from the carpet as possible.

You did a fantastic job. You may now begin removing the debris. There are various alternatives available to you. Let’s have a look at them.

1. Broom and dustpan

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Yes, a good old-fashioned broom and dustpan are in order. A good broom with a long-handled dustpan is a valuable tool to have on hand since it may save you time and reduce back pain.

2. Cordless stick vacuum

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A cordless stick (upright) vacuum is a handy technique to pick up little dirt while avoiding the irritation of a cable.

Before usage, make sure it’s ultimately charged. You might not have access to a power outlet (not to mention that charging can take hours).

Another tip: If your boat carpet is moist, it may not perform as well.

3. Cordless blower

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A cordless blower is strong enough to clear trash rapidly without a wire. (And make sure it’s fully charged!)

4. Wet/dry shop vacuum

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Wet/dry vacuums are excellent at vacuuming up undesirable particles. Yes, it’s helpful when your carpet gets soaked. But remember that you’ll need a place to plug it in.

Removing Carpet Stains

If you’re having fun on your boat, carpet stains are inescapable! There will undoubtedly be stains as a result of all of this:

  • Pets
  • Food and beverage spills
  • Blood (from the occasional boo-boo)
  • Sand
  • Dirt
  • Red mud (the worst kind!)
  • Mold/mildew/algae

Even though moss, mildew, and algae are more like unpleasant visitors residing on your carpet, I’m counting them as stains. They can leave stains if allowed to grow long enough. So, if you have moss, mildew, or algae developing on your carpet (yikes!) and don’t know how to remove it, click here and read this tutorial to figure out what measures to follow.

Now, it’s time to tackle the rest of your stains. There are two significant ways to get rid of stains:

Option 1: a commercial carpet stain remover for boats

Finding a stain remover that is safe and effective at removing all sorts of stains is your best (and most cost-effective) option. Spray Nine Marine Cleaner (check Amazon for pricing) is a popular and effective option.

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Read the directions, ingredients, and any warnings before proceeding. Before you use it, read the owner’s instructions for that boat. You might also call the manufacturer and inquire about the precise cleaning solutions and stain removers they recommend.

Moss, mildew, and algae can reappear after cleaning, so if this has been an issue, you should seal your pontoon carpet with an anti-moss and anti-mildew solution like Wet & Forget (check pricing on Amazon).

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Option 2: Go natural

White vinegar is known to aid with stain removal and is a safe and healthy option if you want to remove stains organically. Here’s how to put it to use:

  1. Blot the stain to remove any excess if it is still fresh.
  2. Spray the carpet with a 1:1 solution of water and white vinegar.
  3. Set aside 15-20 minutes to allow flavours to meld (or longer if you have time).
  4. Scrub the stain with a medium-firm brush until it disappears.
  5. If required, repeat the process.
  6. Rinse well with a hose.

That’s just my favourite stain remover. Click here to learn more about DIY stain removers and carpet cleaners.

Deep Cleaning Your Pontoon Carpet

Depending on how often you use your boat throughout the boating season, you’ll want to do the processes above weekly or every couple of weeks. This will prevent any significant damage or discolouration to your carpet.

After you’ve completed all of the above processes, you’ll need to undertake a deep clean every month or so.

It’s now time to deep clean once the spots have been removed. You have a few alternatives here as well:

Option 1: Hand scrubbing

You may deep clean your boat’s carpet using a stiff brush, a bucket, some light detergent (see the detergent label and owner’s handbook), a water hose, and some elbow grease, then let it dry in the sun. That’s a fantastic, old-fashioned method you can’t go wrong with.

  • Pros: Low-cost
  • Cons: It takes time, it can strain your back, and it can irritate your knees (unless you get knee pads or kneel on a towel)

Option 2: Commercial/rented carpet cleaner or steamer

Rent a commercial cleaner by the hour from a local cleaning company.

  • Pros: Thorough, thorough cleaning that is quick and efficient.
  • Cons: Expensive, requires specific detergent (which may harm your carpet, so check beforehand), large equipment, and requires energy.

Option 3: Use a pressure washer

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Do you have a pressure washer for your car already? You may use this to complete a thorough cleaning. You might also rent one from a cleaning service in your area.

  • Pros: Deep cleans, eliminates stains, and uses no detergent.
  • Cons: Requires access to a water supply, is heavy, and the pressure can harm carpet; renting can be costly.

Option 4: Commercial carpet cleaning service

Of course, you can always ask that local cleaning business to send over an employee with their best equipment to take care of the dirty work for you.

  • Pros: You won’t have to do it yourself and get a thorough cleaning.
  • Cons: Expensive, unknown chemicals (unless you ask) and cleaners that may do damage to your carpet

Option 5: Car or boat wash

If you reside in a boating-friendly location, there’s a high chance you’ll find car washes that also provide boat cleaning services or specialist boatwash firms. Take advantage of the situation.

  • Pros: Simple, practical, and inexpensive
  • Cons: High pressure can cause carpet holes, unknown detergents might cause dryness/brittleness over time, and the size of the wash bay may not be sufficient (make sure you don’t get stuck).

Drying and Final Touches

It’s time to dry and fluff your pontoon carpet once you’ve removed the debris, removed stains, and thoroughly cleaned it. Â Mold, mildew, and moss development can be reduced by properly drying the area.

Remove extra water with a wet/dry shop vacuum to speed up the drying process. The sun will take care of the remainder once the excess water has been eliminated.

After the carpet has dried, “fluffing” will improve the appearance and give it an almost new appearance. Follow these steps:

  1. Apply the paint with a medium-firm bristle brush. (Too soft bristles will not get the job done, while too harsh hairs can shred the carpet fibres.) A long-handled brush might help to relieve back strain.
  2. Using the brush, brush the whole surface of the carpet. The carpet fibres will be “fluffed” as a result of this.
  3. Vacuum again with your shop vacuum if required.
  4. Isn’t it as lovely as new?

Optional: Apply a carpet protectant/sealer to avoid stains later if desired. Some of them even provide UV protection. (I’m sorry if I seem like a broken record. Before you do anything, consult your owner’s handbook.)

Remember that there are no special cleaning instructions for your carpet. It all depends on your pontoon boat’s rules, what you have access to, how unclean your carpet is, and how well your boat carpet is maintained. You may even buy a small ponton home with high-grade carpet that requires genuine liveaboard upkeep.

After considering all these factors, pick the cleaning method that best suits your needs.

The most essential thing is safeguarding your pontoon deck and caring for your carpet.

After all, that’s where all the action takes place.

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