How to Clean Aluminum Pontoon Boats


Don asked: What can I use to clean aluminum pontoon boats? After sitting in the lake all summer and the pontoons are very discolored. Any suggestions on how to restore?

Pontoons can become damaged and discolored as they sit in the various types of water. The water components play a major role in this discoloration, but there are many products available to restore the shine and make them look new again.

You Will Need:

Steps to Clean the Pontoon:

  1. For general cleaning, a pressure washer will remove much of the build up and grime that comes from sitting in the water.
  2. To remove the discoloration and restore the shine, there are a variety of products available.
  3. Choose any of the above products and apply it following the manufacturer’s instructions.
  4. Most just require an application, soak and rinse.

Additional Tips and Advice

  • If you are not sure what product would be best for your boat, contact the manufacturer of the boat to see what products they recommend. This is especially helpful if the boat is still under warranty, as you don’t want to risk applying any cleaner that will void the warranty of the boat.


  1. My pontoons have never been cleaned. Layers of hard lime-like rock has built up. What is the best cleaner or solution? I have tried cleaners from boat companies and it takes hours to clean a very small area. Any suggestions?

  2. Have just used a product called Foam-Brite by Nu-Calgon that is an a/c coil cleaner. This is a non-acid product and it’s biodegradable.
    Cleaned the Grand River scum and crud of the ‘toons and left them shiny new.
    Used a hand sprayer and electric power washer. It took less than an hour and it’s so safe, it never even hurt the grass.

  3. Where would I get this Foam-Brite by Nu-Calgon?

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