How to Clean a Glass Boat Windscreen

How to Clean a Glass Boat Windscreen

Boat windscreens take whatever nature has to throw at them every time you hit the water. Over time, saltwater, sunshine, and airborne debris can impair a windscreen’s clarity. This post will showcase a step-by-step guide to cleaning windscreens and share another step to repel future water and contaminants.

To clean a glass boat windscreen: rinse the window with water to remove salt and dry with a microfiber, apply a small amount of glass cleaner, wipe in straight motions using a microfiber, and apply a rain-repellent product post-cleaning.

Before you clean…

Before applying any product, ensure your boat has a glass windscreen. Today’s watercraft feature a variety of materials in their construction. Aside from glass, boat windscreens can also come in clear acrylic, polycarbonate, or vinyl.

If your windscreen contains a different material than glass, you can use a clear plastic cleaner to shine it up. This product has enough power to clean effectively, yet it’s gentle enough to prevent potential damage. Glass cleaners feature harsh chemicals for breaking down stubborn debris, and applying them to a plastic screen can create serious long-term problems with visibility and durability.

If you sub out a glass cleaner with a clear plastic remover, you can safely and effectively use the following cleaning process for non-glass windscreens.

Product List

Here’s what you’ll need to clean your boat’s windscreen effectively:

  • Hose or water bucket
  • Microfiber towels
  • Streak-free glass cleaner
  • Rain repellent product

Rinse the window with water to remove salt and dry with a microfiber

Note: We recommend rinsing off the entire boat if you live within 100 miles of a saltwater coastline. You can skip this step if your boat hasn’t been in or near saltwater.

Salt from water and air can corrode boat components and scratch glass. We recommend rinsing off the glass before cleaning. Once rinsed, use a microfiber towel to dry off the glass. Don’t worry about streaks or spots; the following steps will address them.

Apply a small amount of glass cleaner

We recommend starting small and scaling up when cleaning your glass. Spray a light film onto the windscreen, covering the perimeter and putting a small amount in the center of the glass.

We specifically recommend going with a streak-free glass cleaner that doesn’t have any added scents or dyes. Both fragrances and dyes leave a slight film on the glass, creating a hazy, unsightly appearance. If you need a glass cleaner, consider Invisible Glass. It has no added scents or dyes and is tint-safe – making it ideal for use if you have any tint to your windscreen. It’s a safe, effective option for first-time and experienced detailers alike.

Wipe in straight motions with a microfiber

Microfiber towels are soft and absorbent, making them perfect for cleaning glass. Hundreds of small fibers pick up and sweep away dust or light debris. Wipe with a fresh microfiber towel, using straight up-and-down or side-to-side motions. Avoid using pressure; the glass cleaner will do all the work for you.

Areas with excessive dirt may require additional glass cleaner.  If you notice streaks or stubborn debris,  reapply the cleaner and continue to wipe.

After a thorough clean, your boat’s windscreen will be clear and debris-free! You could stop here, but we recommend taking an additional step in the form of a rain-repellent product.

Apply a rain repellent post-cleaning

Have trouble seeing at high speeds or in the rain? Adding a rain-repellent product helps water bead right off your glass. These products come in a variety of forms. You’ll commonly find them in a spray bottle. You can opt for a two-in-one clean and rain-repellent product or a standard rain repellent. Invisible Glass offers both products.

Use rain repellent after cleaning the glass for the most effective results. To apply, follow the steps below:

  1. Gather your needed supplies: Rain repellant, several clean, dry microfiber towels, and a pail of clean water.
  2. Choose a cool, shaded area in which to work.
  3. Lightly spray rain repellent on the windshield.
  4. Wipe with a dry, microfiber towel in an overlapping circular motion.
  5. When the coating becomes visible, buff it with a second clean microfiber towel.
  6. Buff any remaining residue with a slightly damp microfiber towel.

Applying rain-repellent products is a fast, easy process, and you’ll notice a difference in your visibility whenever you take your boat out, whether in the sun or the rain.

Take on whatever the sea may throw your way

Cleaning your windscreen takes only a few minutes, and you’ll thank yourself every time you hit the water if you apply a rain-repellent product. Enjoy clear visibility while the water by using these steps: rinse the window with water to remove any salt and dry with a microfiber, apply a small amount of glass cleaner, wipe using a microfiber in straight motions, and apply a rain-repellent product post-cleaning.

Wishing you clear skies, calm waters, and beautiful days on the water!

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