Orange spots on deck - sunscreen - SailNet Community

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Old 07-31-2008
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Orange spots on deck - sunscreen

I recently noticed my boat was developing odd orange spots here and there, mostly smeared looking areas and a few spots that looked like drips. There seemed to be no rhyme or reason for the placement of the spots, except that they were primarily around the cockpit.

The culprit turned out to be sunscreen. The ingredient avobenzone (aka Parsol 1789 and other names) reacts with iron in water, causing rust stains. That explains why the spots seemed to appear out of nowhere - the sunscreen smear had to get wet to turn orange. The same effect can occur on clothing, with areas that touch sunscreen, such as collars, turning orange when exposed to iron in the water when washed.

This may be old news, but I have never had this problem before. Avobenzone is becoming a much more common ingredient in sunscreen in the US.

At least I know how to get rid of those ugly orange spots now.
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Old 07-31-2008
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Thanks for the heads up on that... How did you get rid of the orange spotting??
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Banana Boat brand is the only one I've found that doesn't leave a stain, so far anyway.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Thanks for the heads up on that... How did you get rid of the orange spotting??
I don't remember exactly which product it was, but it said removes rust in big letters on the bottle. I'm guessing any rust remover will do the trick.
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Bullfrog products, doesn't leave any spots, grease or slippery spots and works great. Also waterproof.
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whiteriver
i noticed the same spots while i was cleaning the boat. i was wondering what they were. thanks for the post. i'm going down tomorrow, i have some CLR, calcium, lime, rust, cleaner i'm going to try on it.
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