What is the Best Cleaner for Oxidation on an RV?

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A clean fiberglass camper after using an oxidation remover, parked outside of a pink wall

Have you ever heard of oxidation? This process can turn a beautiful, shiny RV into a dull, worn-out camper. But you don’t have to settle for this lackluster appearance. Today, we’re sharing the best oxidation remover products to help clean and restore your RV. 

Let’s dive in!

What Are Fiberglass RVs?

If you like the vintage look of campers, you might have a fiberglass RV. These trailers are usually white and egg-shaped. Escape, Scamp, and Casita are popular brands that manufacture these fiberglass campers. Some truck camper manufacturers like Oliver and Northern Lite also use fiberglass materials.

These trailers are made of composite fiberglass materials to create the outer shell. Each side is a single sheet of fiberglass. Thus, you’ll experience less water because there are fewer seams. This also makes these campers more durable since fewer seams mean a stronger build.

Why Do People Purchase Fiberglass RVs?

As mentioned above, fiberglass RVs are built solidly, with each piece specifically designed to match the camper’s shape. Fiberglass RVs tend to hold value better than traditional campers because of their durability and quality construction.

They’re also well insulated because their aluminum-framed counterparts conduct heat. Additionally, fiberglass RVs are more resistant to the outside temperatures, so you’ll stay more comfortable.

What Is Oxidation?

Oxidation happens when a substance interacts with oxygen. Since RVs are exposed to the sun and weathering, oxidation occurs frequently on the outer gel coat.

You’ll notice this oxidation when the exterior of your RV starts to look chalky or cloudy and is no longer shiny. Sun, rain, and air will age your RV if you don’t protect the outer gel coat.

Best Oxidation Remover Products on the Market

Preventative maintenance can slow the oxidation process and keep your fiberglass RV looking bright and shiny. However, if you notice your camper starting to look chalky, don’t stress.

You can buy oxidation removers to help get your RV looking new again. But it’s important to catch this process soon to remove the oxidation. Here are our top picks for the best remover products!

With roughly 4,400 reviews, this Meguiar’s oxidation remover is rated 4.5 out of 5 stars. One RVer commented, “This product works! We have a 2017 Keystone Cougar travel trailer that had sat in the Florida sun every day since it was purchased new. The exterior was dry, faded looking and would hold on to any dirt or oil that touched the surface. It definitely dated the trailer. I applied this oxidation remover with a 10 “orbital buffer and was amazed at the results.”

This product clears surface degradation on gel coats and fiberglass surfaces like RVs to restore their shine. The polishing oils restore color and help the RV look like new again. It’s safe to use with no harmful abrasives.

Pro Tip: Keep your RV gleaming with some of the best RV cleaning products!

Meguiar's Marine/RV Heavy Duty Oxidation Remover, Oxidation, Water Spot, Stain, and Scratch Remover for vehicles with Gel-Coat and Fiberglass Surfaces, 16 oz.
  • MADE FOR SPECIALIZED FINISHES: This versatile boat polish clears surface degradation on gel-coat and fiberglass surfaces...
  • POWERFUL FORMULA: While diminishing polishing compound abrasives smooth the surface, feeder oils leave a ‘like new’...

Highest-Rated: 3M Perfect-It Gelcoat Heavy Cutting Compound

With over 1,000 reviews, this 3M fiberglass oxidation remover has a 4.7 out of 5 star rating. One reviewer wrote, “This product works better than I expected…In some areas I had to use several passes to get the shine to match all over. This was due to heavy amount of oxidation from never being waxed in 25 years.”

This product restores heavily oxidized gel coats and has a special formula for boats and RVs. If you only have moderate oxidation, try the 3M Perfect It Medium Cutting Compound plus Wax. But if the oxidation process has left a heavy chalk film on your RV, this heavy-cutting compound will get your rig looking new again.

3M Perfect-It Gelcoat Heavy Cutting Compound, 36102, 1 Quart, Fiberglass Oxidation Remover for Boats and RVs
  • USE WHAT THE PROS USE – Restore heavily oxidized gelcoat into smooth surfaces ready for polish so you can get back on...
  • SAFE FOR GELCOATS AND FIBERGLASS – Marine compound is scientifically formulated for boats and RVs

Budget-Friendly: Thetford Protect All Fiberglass Oxidation Remover and Color Restorer

There aren’t many reviews on this Thetford oxidation remover, but if you’re looking to save money, it’s a good option. One user shared, “It restored my old and faded RV to new looking.” Another user wrote, “I used this product for severe oxidation on my RV. It removed oxidation with ease!”

This 32-ounce 3-in-1 product cleans and restores RVs, trucks, cars, and boats. It also leaves a protective finish for a long-lasting shine. At less than $25, it’s worth trying to remove oxidation on your RV.

Protect All Thetford Protect All Protect All Fiberglass Oxidation Remover and Color Restorer - 32 oz 55032
  • 2-in-1 Formula That Cleans and Restores: Removes fiberglass oxidation and restores the color of the surfaces.
  • Bring Back the Once Lustrous Shine to your RV, car, truck, boat and more with Protect All Fiberglass Oxidation Remover...

Honorable Mention: Bio-Kleen Fiberglass Cleaner

This product also has fewer than 100 reviews but an affordable price for an entire gallon. One customer reviewed, “Wow, I couldn’t believe how the layers of mineral deposits, grime, mold, and oxidation that built up since the middle 1980s disappeared. Now the fiberglass has the original luster it lost over all the years. We unsuccessfully tried mineral deposit cleaners, bleach, etc., and what they did was superficial. You may have to apply this product more than once to get ancient stains up, but it is worth it.”

Shipped in biodegradable packaging, Bio-Kleen is doing its part to protect the environment. Its cleaning products are all environmentally friendly and formulated using high-grade ingredients.

Keep in Mind: If you don’t want a big RV, a fiberglass camper might be right for you. But Are Fiberglass Campers Better Than Other RVs?

Biokleen M00609 Fiberglass Cleaner Gallon, 1 Count (Pack of 1)
  • Package Dimensions: 7 L x 12 H x 7 W (inches)
  • Package Weight: 10 pounds

Why Use an Oxidation Remover on Your RV?

It’s not easy to remove oxidation from an RV. The process might take several tries and coats to notice a difference. But once you have your RV looking bright and shiny again, you’ll feel proud of the time and effort you put into cleaning it up.

No one wants a dilapidated-looking RV. And some RV parks require photos of your rig upon making a reservation. If you don’t care for the exterior, they might turn you away. Plus, whenever you decide to sell or trade in your camper, you’ll get a higher price. So keep your RV looking fresh with an oxidation remover.

Keep Your Fiberglass RV Shiny With an Oxidation Remover

If you wait too long to use an oxidation remover, your RV can turn from white to yellow. This process can be irreversible if severe. So keep an eye on the exterior of your camper.

When you walk around checking seals, bolts, and tire pressure, pay attention to the fiberglass gel coat as well. It will be much easier to restore if you stop the oxidation sooner rather than later.

Have you used an oxidation remover? Is there a product you’d add to our best-of list?

Last update on 2024-06-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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