Best Way to Clean Pontoons – Tips, Techniques

Pontoons are a popular choice for boating enthusiasts. They are versatile, functional, and offer a great way to enjoy the water with family and friends. However, pontoon boats require maintenance to keep them in pristine condition, and cleaning them regularly is essential. In this article, we will explore the best way to clean pontoons and offer tips and tricks to make the process easy and effective.

Wash Pontoon with Soap and Water

The best way to clean pontoons is to start by washing them with soap and water. This can be done using a bucket of soapy water or, even better, a pressure washer. Ensure you use a gentle soap that is boat-friendly to prevent damaging the pontoons’ finish.

Begin by rinsing the pontoons with clean water and then apply the soap mixture. Use a soft-bristled brush or a sponge to scrub the pontoons in circular motions to loosen any dirt or grime. Rinse well with a pressure washer or a hose until all the soap is gone.

Clean the Deck and Upholstery

While cleaning the pontoons, it’s essential to take care of the deck and upholstery too. A good deck wash can get rid of any stains or marks on the surface. Use a deck brush to scrub away the dirt and a hose to rinse thoroughly.

The upholstery must be cleaned with the right cleaner as using the wrong cleaner can damage the material. It’s recommended that you read the manufacturer’s instructions to know the type of cleaner to use. A clean deck and upholstery will make the pontoons look brand new.

Remove Stains and Deposits

Pontoons that have been left uncleaned for an extended period may have stubborn stains and deposits. These may include rust, algae, and mineral deposits. To get rid of these, you can use specialized cleaners that are designed to remove tough stains.

Be careful to read the instructions carefully and follow them to the letter to avoid damaging the pontoons. Stubborn stains may require multiple applications or the use of a power tool.

Best Way to Clean Pontoons
Best Way to Clean Pontoons

Protect the Pontoons

Once you have cleaned the pontoons, it’s advisable to protect them to ensure they stay clean for a longer time. This can be done by applying a UV-resistant wax or protectant. This product will not only add a shiny finish but also protect the pontoons from the sun’s rays, which can cause fading or discoloration. Applying a protectant regularly can reduce the need for a thorough clean up, as it helps to repel dirt and stains.

Conduct Regular Maintenance

Regular maintenance is essential to keep the pontoons in excellent condition. This includes cleaning them periodically and checking for any signs of wear and tear. High traffic areas or entry and exit points should be checked frequently, and any debris or dirt should be removed immediately. Applying a protectant or anti-fouling coating can help prevent marine growth and other debris from sticking to the pontoons.

Use Professional Services

If you are not confident about cleaning your pontoons, it’s advisable to use professional pontoon cleaning services. This way, you can ensure that the job is done correctly, and the pontoons are not damaged. Professional cleaners are equipped with the right tools and products to clean even the most stubborn stains and deposits.


Cleaning pontoons is an essential part of boating maintenance. Doing it right ensures that your pontoons stay in excellent condition and last longer. These tips and tricks will make the cleaning process easy and keep your pontoons looking like new for years to come.


1. How often should I clean my pontoon boat?

You should clean your pontoon boat regularly, ideally after every use. This will prevent dirt, grime, and other debris from building up and causing damage. If you use your boat frequently, it’s recommended that you clean it at least once a month.

2. Can I use any soap to clean my pontoon boat?

No, you should use a gentle soap that is specifically designed for boats. Regular household soaps or detergents may contain harsh chemicals that can damage the boat’s finish or upholstery. Look for soap products that are biodegradable, eco-friendly, and free from phosphates.

3. How do I remove stains from my pontoon boat?

To remove stains, you can use specialized cleaners that are designed for boats. These cleaners are formulated to target specific types of stains, such as rust, algae, or mineral deposits. Be sure to follow the instructions carefully and test the cleaner on a small, inconspicuous area first to avoid damaging the boat.

4. How do I protect my pontoon boat from UV damage?

The best way to protect your pontoon boat from UV damage is to apply a UV-resistant wax or protectant. These products contain ingredients that block UV rays and prevent fading or discoloration. Be sure to apply the product evenly and follow the instructions carefully for best results.

5. Can I clean my pontoon boat myself or should I hire a professional?

You can clean your pontoon boat yourself if you have the right tools and products. However, if you’re not confident in your cleaning skills, or if you have stubborn stains or deposits, it may be best to hire a professional. Professional cleaners have the expertise and equipment to clean your boat thoroughly without causing damage.

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