Water spots are the bane of my life.

Well okay, perhaps that is an exaggeration, but when it comes to my pontoon boat I want everything to be as clean and shiny as possible, and unfortunately after every trip those water spots and stains come back.

I’ve got a method which I use on every trip to remove the water spots from my pontoon which I would like to share with you now.

Believe it or not, it’s just water and vinegar.

This is how you remove water spots from your pontoon:

Mix 50% percent distilled water with 50% vinegar. Put it in a cheap water spray bottle. Spray the solution onto the water spots, and then wipe clean with a towel or cloth.

It really is that simple.

Vinegar will also work for other cleaning applications too, not just water stains.

It will also work on engines, motors, side walls, panels, vinyl seats, tubes, anchor winches and more. In fact, anywhere you have water spots on your pontoon boat, it will usually work.

But it Won’t Remove All Water Stains

I used to keep the bottle handy on my boat at all times, but there were some water stains and spots that it wouldn’t remove.

Typically, this would happen if I didn’t do a water spot wipe down with my spray bottle at the end of every boat trip.

Left for just a couple of days, water spots can be very stubborn on pontoon panels, particular on darker colors such as blues and blacks.

I have a black Mercury outboard engine, which looks terrible once the water spray has splashed all over it.

The Best Way to Remove Water Spots from Your Pontoon

Vinegar and water is what I used for about 12 months.

It was good, but for really tough water marks I needed something a little bit more effective.

The best water spot remover I have found, and which I use to this day on my pontoon, is something called Boat Bling hot sauce cleaner.

It is a vinegar-based solution, but also contains over non-corrosive and non-abrasive cleaning materials that do a far better job.

The killer selling point though is the Carnuba wax that’s in it. This means it leaves a really good shine but also will help stop water spots appearing too.

It cuts down my cleaning duties significantly.

For me, it’s the best wax for water spot prevention, and here’s why I recommend it.

  • Leaves a shiny wax finish on your pontoon
  • The wax will also help to prevent water spots in the future
  • Make for light cleaning work with less elbow grease
  • Doesn’t cost huge amounts of money
  • You can leave it under the seats for when you need it
  • No need to mess around mixing water and vinegar

The spray bottle will only last a couple of months, so I also recommend that you buy a gallon of Hot Sauce water spot remover so you can top-up your spray bottle when required.

Here’s what the Boat Bling company says about their Hot Sauce water spot remover:

  • Fast detailer Specially formulated for your boat
  • Removes hard water spots without removing wax
  • Leaves a show quality shine
  • Perfect for autos, watercraft, RV’s, campers, motorcycles, ATVs and more
  • The choice of the top boating manufacturers and owner’s groups
  • Eliminates the need for constant waxing of your surfaces
  • High quality black sprayer with a built-in filter plus stream, spray and off mode
  • Biodegradable and environmentally safe when used as directed

How to Prevent Water Spots on a Boat

You can never prevent water spots completely, but you can take steps to reduce how frequently they appear, cutting down the amount of type you have to spend removing the stains in the first place. 

By using a wax or wax-based cleaning solution will actually help to prevent water spots.

Cleaning pontoon boat with vinegar

Left hand panels with water spots, right hand panels after cleaning – image credit unknown, found via a Facebook share.

You can buy alternative marine water repellents on websites such as Amazon, but I’ve never gone wrong with the Hot Sauce spray due to the Carnuba wax that it contains.

Spray it on and it should last quite a while; you will be really pleased at how well it prevents water spots on your pontoon boat panels, tubes, and outboard motor.