After trying virtually everything to remove the black mildew spots on the top areas of my seats and especially the top of the stern area on my RLi model, I finally tried some bleach water. Guess what? It fricken worked. Guess what else? It didn't stain a damn thing.
I was extremely reluctant to try it but nothing else worked...not even that Totally Awesome cleaner...not even when I used it straight. So I read some blogs on using bleach. Some people claimed it would not only stain the vinyl seating, it would also weaken the threads. Then I read someone who said they had been in the upolstry business for over 20 years. He said you can absolutely use bleach but to mix 1 cup in a gallon of water. Then to apply it but not to leave it on forever. He said that was the key. So I did about 7 different applications of this solution....rubbing it in with an old hand towel. After 5 minutes of soaking in (and baking in the sun) I then used a different towel and soaked it in clean water and then went over the same areas....effectively diluting the bleached area. I wish I would have taken before and after photos because it really was quite remarkable.
I actually did this yesterday and waited until today to post this cuz I wanted to make sure there were no stains 24 hours later. Not a one.
Trust me....I was very anxious about pulling the trigger on this but the mildew was so bad. I figured the worst case scenario was that I stain the hell out of everything and then I'd just pull a Derek, get P.A.D.S. and buy an entire new boat.