Easy Steps To Remove Lake Scum From Your Aluminum Boat!

Aluminum boats are popular among boaters for their durability, strength, and ease of maintenance. 

However, one of the biggest challenges faced by aluminum boat owners is cleaning lake scum off the boat’s surface. Lake scum can accumulate on the surface of the boat due to algae, pollen, and other debris. 

It not only affects the boat’s appearance but also reduces its performance. Here are the steps to effectively clean lake scum off an aluminum boat.

How To Clean Lake Scum Off Aluminum Boat

How To Clean Lake Scum Off Aluminum Boat

Cleaning lake scum off an aluminum boat is a straightforward process. Choose the proper cleaning solution, prepare it according to the instructions, apply it to the boat’s surface, let it sit, scrub it, rinse it, and dry it.

Choose the Right Cleaning Solution: The first step is to choose the right cleaning solution. There are many commercial cleaning products available in the market, but not all of them are suitable for aluminum boats. 

  • Avoid using acidic cleaners, bleach, or abrasive cleaners, as they can damage the boat’s surface. 
  • Instead, use a mild cleaner such as a boat wash or a detergent mixed with warm water. 
  • You can also use a specialized aluminum boat cleaner designed to remove scum and stains from the boat’s surface.

Prepare the Cleaning Solution: Once you have chosen the proper cleaning solution, prepare it according to the instructions on the label. 

If you are using a boat wash or detergent, mix it with warm water in a bucket. If you are using an aluminum boat cleaner, follow the instructions on the bottle.

Apply the Cleaning Solution: Apply the cleaning solution to the boat’s surface using a soft-bristled brush, sponge, or cloth. 

Work in small sections, starting from the boat’s top and working your way down. Apply the cleaner in a circular motion, applying extra pressure to areas with heavy scum buildup.

Let the Cleaner Sit: After applying the cleaning solution, let it sit on the boat’s surface for a few minutes. This will allow the cleaner to penetrate the scum and loosen it from the boat’s surface.

Scrub the Surface: Using the soft-bristled brush, scrub the boat’s surface in a circular motion to remove the scum. Avoid using a stiff brush or abrasive pads as they can scratch the boat’s surface. Rinse the brush frequently to remove any scum buildup.

Rinse the Boat: Once you have scrubbed the entire boat, rinse it thoroughly with clean water. Use a hose or pressure washer to remove all traces of the cleaning solution and scum.

Dry the Boat: Finally, dry the boat with a clean towel or chamois. This will prevent water spots from forming on the boat’s surface.

Best Cleaner For Cleaning Lake Scum

How To Clean Lake Scum Off Aluminum Boat

Cleaning an aluminum boat requires a careful balance between removing dirt, grime, and stains while protecting the metal from damage or corrosion. Here are some steps to follow for the best cleaner to clean an aluminum boat:

Right Cleaning Product:

The best cleaning product for an aluminum boat is XPS Aluminum Cleaner, which is specifically designed to clean and brighten aluminum surfaces without causing damage or corrosion. 

This cleaner quickly and safely removes waterline scum, algae stains, mold, and oxidation from painted and unpainted hull surfaces.

Safety precautions:

  • Before you begin cleaning, rinse the boat with water to remove any loose dirt or debris. Use a hose or pressure washer to rinse the boat thoroughly, particularly the areas around the waterline.
  • If you are using XPS Aluminum Cleaner, follow the instructions on the label to apply the product to the boat. Generally, you will spray the cleaner onto the surface and allow it to sit for a few minutes before rinsing it off with water.
  • Focus on the areas with stains or discoloration, and be sure to avoid scrubbing too hard or using abrasive materials.
  • Be sure to rinse the boat completely, paying particular attention to the areas around the waterline and in hard-to-reach areas.
  • Avoid moisture staying long on the boat. This will help to prevent water spots and other damage caused by standing water.


Aluminum boats are popular for recreational boaters and anglers because of their durability, low maintenance requirements, and corrosion resistance. 

However, like any other vessel, an aluminum boat requires regular cleaning and maintenance to keep it looking its best and functioning at its peak.

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