Eagle One Trim Protector Gel

Use the Trim Protector Gel to shine a variety of aged surfaces.

Eagle One, the manufacturer of Trim Protector Gel, doesn’t call it Vinyl Protector, and in fact the V-word comes far down in the fine print of the product’s objectives. But vinyl is the key material boaters need to protect, and we were most curious about its impact on some severely weathered material. Though the Trim Protector did a fine job of shining up the interior of my boat, the worst vinyl I found was the spare tire cover on my 1990 off-road SUV. It was black, faded and chalky. I wiped it clean with soapy water and dried it — then sprayed on the gel. They say to work it in with a cloth, but I didn’t want the elixir to be absorbed in fabric, so, like an experienced shoe-shiner, I massaged it in bare-handed and let it soak in for an hour. The result was a satisfyingly tough shine to the aged surface. Likewise, I rubbed it on rubber bumper pads for similar results. Trailer tires would benefit, as would sun-damaged VHF antenna wires, hatch gaskets or coaming bolsters. Worth the money at $5.49; AutoZone.