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Boat Cover Care & Use

Congratulations on your purchase of a boat cover from SugarHouse Industries. With occasional cleaning and careful use, you will enjoy your boat cover for many years.

Warranty

Warning

Operation

Caring for Your Boat Cover

Cleaning

Warranty

10 Year limited manufacturer warranty of Solution Dyed Acrylic (Sunbrella™) fabric.

7 Year limited manufacturer warranty on Vinyl Coated Polyester (Top Gun® 1S) fabric.

All our marine covers are guaranteed to be free of defects in materials, hardware and workmanship to the original owner for the entire warranty period of the fabric. During this period, SugarHouse Industries will repair or replace any defective product at no charge to the original owner.

This warranty does not cover damage due to misuse, negligence, abuse, mold, mildew or acts of God, nor does it cover the water repellency of the fabric.

Warranties are contingent upon proper use and care of your boat cover. Failure to follow these guidelines will void the warranty.

Warranty can be redeemed through SugarHouse Industries. Detail information regarding warranty coverage is available on our warranty page.

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 Warning

  • Always make sure your cover is securely fastened when traveling and during storage. A loose cover can tear in the wind and may void your warranty.
  • You should only use one cover or tarp at a time on your boat. The friction caused by two covers rubbing together can wear holes in the bottom cover.  Whether traveling or even just storing your boat outside, only one cover should be used.
  • All our covers are specially designed to allow your boat to ‘breathe’ either through venting or by using breathable materials. This keeps moisture from getting trapped which can lead to corrosion and mildew growth inside your boat.  Never use plastic tarps or other non-breathable covers to cover your boat.
  • Although Vinyl Coated Polyester (Top Gun® 1S) fabrics are 100% waterproof, the seams may allow some moisture through.

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Operation

Snap-On covers are designed to fit snugly on your boat.  For the easiest installation:

  1. Fasten the snaps at the front of the boat.
  2. Fasten the snaps at the back of the boat.
  3. Fasten the remaining snaps on the sides.

Fastening the front and back snaps first will make it easier to connect the side snaps.

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Caring for your Boat Cover

  • Keep standing water off your cover. The fabric is water repellent, but not waterproof. Puddled water may eventually soak through or stretch the fabric.  Leaves and dirt in puddled water can enable mildew growth on your cover.  Support poles are available to help shed water, but should not be used to support snow.
  • Mildew can be your cover’s worst enemy. Mildew is always a result of negligence. Our marine fabrics are specially treated to resist mildew growth, but mildew can and will grow on any surface that is dirty and damp. Once this mildew growth has started, it will then attach the fabric of the cover itself. To help prevent mildew growth, keep your cover clean and always thoroughly dry it before storing it for an extended period of time.
  • To prevent mildew growth under the cover while in use, allow the boat to dry completely before covering and storing for an extended period of time.
  • You do not need to use a waterproofing or “Scotch Guard” spray on your new boat cover. It should have all the treatment it needs for several years. Refer to the Cleaning section of this pamphlet should waterproofing become necessary.
  • Repair any holes, tears, or pulled out snaps immediately. Catching problems early will help extend the life of your cover.

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Cleaning

Proper care and cleaning of your new boat cover is important for maintaining its appearance and durability. Most of the cleaning products mentioned can be found at our store or other retail locations.

Solution Dyed Acrylic (Sunbrella®) Fabric

Vinyl Coated Polyester (Top Gun® 1S) Fabric

Caring for Solution Dyed Acrylic (Sunbrella®) Fabric

CAUTION: Never use a high-powered pressure washer or commercial car wash sprayer. Never machine dry these fabrics – AIR DRY ONLY.

Acrylic fabrics will withstand years of normal exposure to sunlight and rain.  They resist mildew, sun-rot, and atmospheric chemicals while retaining their color and strength.  They carry a 10-year, limited manufacturer’s warranty and feature a water and stain resistant finish which simplifies cleaning.

To prevent the need for vigorous cleaning and to maximize the life of your boat cover, the fabric should be rinsed off with a hose each month to remove dirt and other debris. The fabric should have a deep cleaning every 2-3 years. Solution-dyed acrylic fabric does not promote mildew growth.  However, mildew may grow on dirt and other foreign substances that are not removed from the fabric.

For simple stains or a light cleaning the fabric may be washed with a solution of mild detergent (i.e. Woolite or Dawn) and lukewarm water. Let the solution soak into the fabric and use a soft-bristle brush to scrub gently. Rinse thoroughly with clean water until all cleaning residue is removed and then air dry.  Size permitting, your cover can be put in a washing machine, using a natural soap with cold or warm water and then air dried.

For a deep cleaning or to remove stubborn stains (i.e. mildew), prepare a solution of one cup of bleach, 1/4 cup of mild detergent, and one gallon of water.  Allow the solution to soak into the fabric for 15 minutes. Use a soft-bristle brush to scrub gently.  Rinse thoroughly with clean water until all cleaning residue is removed and then air dry. After a deep cleaning or five years of use, the water repellent finish (i.e. 303 High Tech Fabric Guard) should be reapplied to the fabric.

Smaller fabric pieces that can be removed entirely from their supporting framework can be machine washed in a front-load washer using cold water with a mild detergent and air dried.

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Vinyl Coated Polyester (Top Gun® 1S) Fabric

CAUTION: Never use a high-powered pressure washer or commercial car wash sprayer. Never machine dry these fabrics – AIR DRY ONLY.

General Cleaning Procedure

Hand Washer:

We recommend using a soap and not a detergent when cleaning. Detergents contain surfactants that are very difficult to remove completely causing the effectiveness of any post treatment water repellent to be greatly reduced.

Fill a large container with warm water between 100-120˚F. Dissolve 1 cup of mild soap and 2 cups baking soda. Soak the stained material in the cleaning solution for 3-5 hours. Avoid crushing or creasing of the fabric. Gently swirl or agitate the material every half hour. At the end of the soaking period, visually inspect for remaining stains. The mild scouring action of baking soda and a mild soap should loosen most stains. If necessary, use a soft bristled brush to scrub in a light circular motion around any remaining stains. For more stubborn stains, we have had success using a 10% solution of Mean Green via a spray bottle (this is a detergent and will negatively affect the application of a post treatment water repellent). Spray the solution onto the stains using a spray bottle application. Use the same scrubbing directions listed above to loosen the stains. After removal of all stains, rinse once with warm water and three times with cold water. Continue with a cold rinse until only water remains. Hang material to dry. A post treatment water repellent such as AQUA-TITE® GREEN must be applied after fabric is fully dry and/or at least once a year to help the fabric’s longevity.

Industrial Washer:

If possible, select appropriately sized washing equipment to avoid crushing or creasing of the fabric.

Load material into washer and select warm cycle, temperature range 100-120˚F (do not use high temp or hot cycle). A gentle cycle should be selected to avoid strong spinning or tumbling of the fabric.

Dissolve 1 cup of mild soap, plus 2 cups baking soda in 1 gallon of warm water and add to washing machine.

Before the end of the drain cycle inspect the fabric for remaining stains. The mild scouring action of baking soda and a mild soap should loosen most stains. If necessary, use a soft bristled brush to scrub in a light circular motion around any remaining stains. For more stubborn stains you will likely need to use a detergent; We have had success spraying a 10% solution of Mean Green via a spray bottle. (As mentioned above, a detergent will negatively affect the application of a post treatment water repellent). Spray the solution onto the stains using a spray bottle application. Use the same scrubbing directions listed above to loosen the stains.

If necessary, repeat above steps to remove any remaining stains.

After removal of all stains, use a multiple rinse cycle to thoroughly clean all soap from the fabric. Rinse once with warm water and three times with cold water. Visually inspect to ensure all soap has been removed, if not, continue with a cold rinse cycle until only water remains.

To dry material, avoid excessive spinning or tumble drying. Hang material to dry. A post treatment water repellent, such as Aqua-Tite Green, must be applied after cleaning. Allow fabric to fully dry before storing or applying this treatment.

Cleaning Procedure for Mold & Mildew Growth:

Procedure describes a hand cleaning method for removing mold and mildew growth. Please note that most mold and mildew have to be removed by some kind of soak. Scrubbing will likely not remove it.

Use a container with a lid and large enough to avoid crushing or creasing the fabric. If you cannot find a container large enough for your cover, follow the below steps performing them on a section of the cover that can comfortably fit and repeat until all sections are clean. Fill the container with a with warm water between 100-120˚F. For every 25 gallons of water, dissolve ½ cup of mild soap, ½ cup baking soda, and ½ gallon of bleach (safety note: wear gloves and eye protection while handling bleach). For best results, weight the piece down with jugs of water or the like (something that won’t bleed on the fabric or degrade in bleach) to completely submerge the piece.

NOTE:  If your cover has any vinyl windows, DO NOT SUBMERGE THEM!  Bleach will mar or cloud them permanently.

Soak the areas around the window a little at a time.  Seal over all grommets, snaps, or metal fasteners as bleach will cause these to dull and tarnish.  Reusable rope caulk weather-strip or clear fingernail polish works best.

Soak the fabric for 24 hours under a closed lid. Avoid crushing or creasing of the fabric.

Gently swirl or agitate the material every half hour for the first 2 hours and the last 2 hours of the total 24 hour soak.

At the end of the soaking period, visually inspect for remaining stains. The mild scouring action of baking soda and a mild soap should remove most stains. If necessary, use a soft bristled brush to scrub in a light circular motion around any remaining stains.

If necessary, the cycle can be repeated once more to remove residual mold and mildew growth.

After removal of all mold and mildew growth, use a multiple rinse cycle to thoroughly clean all soap from the fabric. Rinse three times with warm water and three times with cold water. Visually inspect to ensure all soap has been removed, if not, continue with a cold rinse cycle until only water remains.

Hang material to dry. A post treatment water repellent, such as Aqua-Tite Green, must be applied after cleaning. Allow fabric to fully dry before storing or applying this treatment.

Treating Color Transfer:

The pigmentation in vinyl coated polyester fabric should not migrate onto upholstery vinyl. If some surface rub-off should occur, remove it with vinyl cleaner of mineral spirits. In areas where vigorous movement of the fabric against a hard surface will occur during use, use of a buffer strip is recommended.

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