Accordion shades are a great option for sailboat windows. They don’t allow the personalization that curtains provide but they do look modern and chic. Whether you’ve just purchased a used boat or you have owned your boat for several years and the shades are showing their age, here are instructions on how to wash your shades to get them looking brilliant again.
Make a list of the length of each shade and the location. List the shades from forward to aft and mark which side they are located on. This will make it easier to know where to re-install them when you are done cleaning them. When removing the shades, return the screws so they are not lost and to guarantee they are returned to the same hole.
Prepare a bathtub with just enough water to cover the shades – maybe around a quarter full. Add a half cup of Woolite and half cup of bleach. Woolite will gently clean the accordion fabric. Soak overnight or up to two days. Rinse. Dry the shades completely. This may take a few days.
Once they are completely dry, spray the shades with starch and then iron the pleats to help stiffen the fabric. Re-install them on the sailboat.