How to Restore a Rusty Boat Trailer

We haven't finished yet but here is a in the process picture before the gloss

So you bought a fixer upper. Okay an old boat that has been sitting in someones yard for ages and the trailer is all rusty and ugly, and you had this dream of the way that boat could possibly look and now it is just sitting there because you have no idea how to restore it.

Okay this part is better suited for a man or at least a woman that is really good with working with power tools. (I'm not I freaked out as soon as I turned on the grinder, shut it back off and said nope you do it!) It is okay you can laugh it was funny. Now that I said that take your grinder and your wire brush. And take off all the rust and old paint. Be careful because the grinder will jerk away from you and the last thing you need is for it to jerk out of your hands and hurt yourself or damage the boat.

Once you have all the rust and paint off of the trailer that you can get with the grinder. This is where you want to apply the paint stripper. Make sure you get a type of stripper that will take off rust too. Lay your plastic on the ground under neath where you are applying the stripper. This way it will catch any that drips on the ground, and stray animals don't try to eat it.

Wait the appropriate amount of time them use your putty knife to scrape it all off. (The reason for this step is so that way you aren't purchasing a whole lot of the stripper. This stuff isn't cheap, also you don't end up damaging the fiberglass of the boat when you hit it with the grinder. That wouldn't be too cheap to fix either.)

Apply a coat of the rustolium rust stopper wait for it to dry, then touch up any spots you may have missed.

Apply your high gloss paint, wait for it to dry then do some touch ups

Things You Will Need

  • Portable Electric Grinder or Drill
  • Wire Cup Brush attachment
  • Paint Stripper
  • Paint Brush
  • Plastic
  • Putty knife
  • Rustoleum Rust remover
  • Spray Paint
  • Rustoleum High Gloss Spray Paint


We ripped off the wiring harness since half of it was gone anyway. But you may need to cover it or simply replace it. The kit at walmart is only like 25 dollars or so. Depending on whether or not you are doing the whole job in one day or not you might want to do spray the rust stopper as you go along. If you don't you will have more rust in the morning