After a couple of months our new port lights were rusting. These are suppose to be 316 stainless steel. Well we decided to see if we could clean them and not wanting to damage them I e-mailed New Found Metals for the recommended way to clean them. They replied that many of their customers are using RainX as it is safe for the rubber, metal and glass.
Well we bought a bottle of RainX and used it to clean one of the port lights. While it looked a little better it still didn’t look very good.
It so happens that while I was researching cleaning deck non-skid I ran across a product that is safe on fiberglass, rubber, metal and many other surfaces. It is lanolin based and environmentally safe. There is a marine version but I prefer to use Fluid Film. Using this in combination with RainX has worked for over 3 months now. I also believe that some of the rust was deposited on the port lights from the yard in the form of sanding dust.
Here is the process I used:
Remove the screen from the port light.
Remove the rubber gasket from the screen.
Clean the screen in a mixture of Fluid Film and water with a scrub brush
With a rag wipe down the rubber gasket for the screen with Fluid Film. Be sure to get all the surfaces.
Reassemble the rubber gasket onto the screen and set the assembly aside.
Wipe down the outside metal areas of the port light with Fluid Film and use a scrub brush remove any rust. Here is the quote from Fluid Film “FLUID FILM is not formulated to remove rust. However, if applied over existing rust, it will stop it immediately from spreading further. FLUID FILM will penetrate rust and rust scale to the base metal, loosening and easing in the removal process.”
Going inside continue wiping down the metal portions of the port light with Fluid Film.
Wipe down the rubber gasket going around the window with Fluid Film.
Using the RainX clean the window, both sides.
Reinstall the screen.
Your port lights should stay bright and shiny for many months.
Here is where you can buy both products:
By the way while you have the Fluid Film out spray down all your turn buckles and steel cables, especially the swag fittings.
NOTE: pictures to follow.