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Old 10-16-2013, 03:41 PM   #1
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Dull Gel Coat Finish

We have a Designer fifth wheel with a gelcoat fiberglass exterior.

Below the water heater access door the finish has become dull and discolored due to the tank relief valve discharging water containing lime and other impurities.

Is there a product available that will bring back the original shine without harming the gelcoat finish?
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Old 10-16-2013, 04:27 PM   #2
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From what I experienced with boats, there is no quick fix for gelcoat. The problem with gelcoat is that it's somewhat porous. Contamination like that gets right into it, making it difficult to remove. If it's not too deep, you may have some success by using a buffing compound, but too much of that will make it look worse by removing all the gelcoat layer and revealing the base fiberglass. You may also try using CLR or vinegar to remove the lime stain, if that's what it is. Frequent waxing of the gelcoat before any discoloring can sometimes be a helpful preventative.
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Old 10-16-2013, 05:13 PM   #3
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There are acid based products which may work. Black Streak Remover is one that many people use on boats to remove stains.

Personally I would first try a Magic Eraser with Orange Hand Cleaner undiluted to see if that gets it off. The Orange Hand Cleaner feels gritty, but the "grit" is not too aggressive and disolves in water. I've never had it dull the surface. Follow the cleaning with a polish of choice. The procedure also works to remove rust streaks on vehicle paint.

As David472 said, power buffing will really bring the shine and slippery feel back to gelcoat, but each time that is done ot takes a bit more of the coating off.

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Old 10-16-2013, 08:18 PM   #4
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Take a look here;

https://www.jaycoowners.com/showthrea...estoring-shine

Looks like he used a floor product called ZEP?? Pics of the trailer look great!
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Old 10-17-2013, 04:50 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by glsimms View Post
Take a look here;

https://www.jaycoowners.com/showthrea...estoring-shine

Looks like he used a floor product called ZEP?? Pics of the trailer look great!
That is nice for polishing, but it won't remove lime stains.
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Old 10-17-2013, 08:09 AM   #6
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Dull Gel Coat Finish

Quote:
Originally Posted by David472 View Post
That is nice for polishing, but it won't remove lime stains.

Correct the Zep is not for cleaning it is for shine.
But the Barkeepers friend will work on removing stain. Good luck
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Old 10-17-2013, 09:30 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by David472 View Post
That is nice for polishing, but it won't remove lime stains.
Quote:
Originally Posted by lx22f/c View Post
Correct the Zep is not for cleaning it is for shine.
But the Barkeepers friend will work on removing stain. Good luck

The link I provided laid out a multi-step process to clean and put a finish shine on the trailer. He talks about removing stains in step2 of his prep......

Bar Keepers Friend is shown in his pics, btw.
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Old 10-17-2013, 10:08 AM   #8
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Vehicle polish and wax are formulated to help protect against UV degradation from sunlight. Floor care products aren't concerned with that so it is not likely included. It would be interesting to know what long term protection this ZEP floor care provides. vic
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Old 10-18-2013, 02:57 PM   #9
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Either Starbrite or Attwood Hull Cleaner will get rid of most stains on gelcoat. Both contain Oxalic Acid as the primary ingredient. I buy it at Walmart in the boating section or at any of the boating supply stores. All you do is wipe it on with a rag as wait a couple minutes. Rinse off any residue with water. After you get it clean, then use a wax or polish to restore and protect the surface. I use a teflon polish on the boat, but it may be overkill on a TT.

We have a lot of Tannin from trees as well as iron in our local waters so you can imagine how badly our boats get stained. After you get it clean, then use a wax or polish to restore and protect the surface. I use a teflon polish on the boat, but it may be overkill on a TT. The teflon seem keep the stains away for a couple months.
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