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Maintaining a gel coat finish

by Tom Jones

A recent issue of Powerboat Reports presented the results of testing of various paste and liquid waxes claiming to provide protection for gel coated fiberglass surfaces. Not surprisingly, heavy paste waxes performed the best, with Collinite (a carnuba based wax) taking the #1 position, The liquid formulas, including Teflon, although easier to apply and giving a good initial result, soon faded.

These results confirmed my experience over many years with fiberglass boats and unpainted fiberglass motorhome, and confirm the adage that the easier it is to apply, the shorter it's going to last.

Note that the tests and my observations apply to unpainted, gel coated fiberglass. I suspect that different products work best for painted surfaces such as the full body paint on our current coach, but I don't have the long term experience to validate this assumption.