Problem: Dirty Bilge
A wet, dirty bilge isn't just an eyesore: It can bring unwanted odors, and pumping out oily water is illegal. In addition, the muck makes it hard to spot small problems before they become big ones.
Turn off the bilge pump and use a wet/dry vac or sponge to remove any remaining water. Pour in some kind of degreaser, like a gentle dish washing soap. Add a couple buckets of hot water, depending on the size of your bilge. Use a brush to scrub the surfaces, being sure to get into the nooks and crannies. Suck out the dirty water with your wet/dry vac and dispose of properly. (Avoid dumping the dirty water overboard. Doing so can carry a hefty fine.) Remember to switch on your bilge pump to the automatic setting afterward.
Once your bilge is fully dry, add oil-absorbing pads in areas where grease or fuel could collect. Address ongoing leaks or drips, and clean up spills right away.
Problem: Fish blood Stains On Nonskid
While evidence of catches on your deck means you had a great day on the water, it's just plain yucky to look at.
The best method is to wash down any affected surfaces before the blood has a chance to dry. Should you miss a spot, sprinkle some Bar Keepers Friend on clean, wet nonskid, scrub, and rinse. Alternatively, try hydrogen peroxide or OxiClean (or generic equivalent) for really tough dried-on stains.
Thwart future stains with a coat of Woody Wax, which is safe to use on decks.
Problem: Hard water stains
Those icky white spots that appear on your hull, glass, or engine cowlings from mineral deposits mar your freshly cleaned finish.
Spray a mixture of equal parts vinegar and water, let sit for 5 minutes, then wipe off. Or keep a box of dryer sheets onboard. Moisten one with water, gently rub over the spots, then rinse for a sparkling shine.
Immediately after washing in a shady area, spritz the surface with a 4:1 water/vinegar mix. Use a wrung-out chamois to remove water droplets before they dry. Then apply a coat or two of wax, like Woody Wax, to help keep water spots at bay. For very hard water, consider adding a dockside or inline water filter to remove the minerals.