Boat Covers: Keep Your Boat Clean and Protected
If you just purchased your very first boat, you’re probably beyond happy. Sailing is one of the best ways to enjoy your free time and refresh your mind but body as well. Just imagine a day of fishing, sailing or spending a romantic brunch on the boat. Certainly enticing, right?
While you probably get to enjoy plenty of sunny days out with your boat, the truth is, it will spend most of the time sitting unused. After all, you have so much free time to spend in your busy life (unless you’re a retiree or have passive income to support you).
That said, when you aren’t sailing and your boat is in the marina or in your backyard, it shouldn’t be left uncovered. Maybe you don’t keep anything valuable there, but an uncovered boat is the same as an unlocked car. Anyone can enter in, take a few things that are easy to carry and leave your boat damaged.
Also, a boat without a cover is exposed to all sorts of debris, dirt and dust, and let’s not forget that birds fly around and they, well, drop things down. If you’re new to this whole boat thing, you should know that boat covers are a must! Investing in one is a smart way to protect your boat and keep in good shape for a long time.
The Main Reasons to Get a Boat Cover
Keep Your Boat Clean and Protected from the Elements
The interior of your boat should stay clean and dry if you want it to remain functional. There are many quality boat covers on the market that will protect from airborne dust, grime, and dirt, but also from falling leaves from trees, droppings from birds and dust from the road. If you didn’t have a cover so far and have already used your boat several times, you already know that things get messy quickly and you have to clean it properly each time.
In addition to the dirt, the cover will protect the boat and the interior from the ultra-violet rays from the sun. These rays aren’t dangerous only for your skin but for everything else such as carpets, outdoor furniture, the boat’s interior mechanism and so on. The harsh rays can fade the hues of the finishes and fabrics and after a while, everything will look old and lifeless. The sun can also break the rubber components, causing weakness and cracks on the boat parts (which isn’t a good thing for gas lines or hoses!).
No People or Animals Will Get in Your Boat
When your boat is properly covered, no human or animal can get in. Animals won’t think twice before snuggling up on the soft seats. Rodents and nesting mammals will appreciate the comfort of your uncovered boat and will enjoy their time there. Also, you can expect animals to chew on wires, so a cover is a must. Humans are not looking for the protection and comfort of an open boat, but they would love to steal a few things. The gas tank or paddles and battery aren’t too heavy for a thief. A secure cover will keep their sticky fingers off your boat.
Types of Boat Covers
Boat covers are available in two forms – custom-fit and universal cover. The custom-fit is made and tailored for the exact model of your boat. The universal, as the name says, is a generic model and can fit the measurements of your watercraft.
If you decide to get a custom boat cover, it will be manufactured to the exact measurements of your boat. To measure the dimensions consider the console-style, width and length as well as the beam and other measurements of your boat. When you send these measurements and the company makes the exact cover, it will fit like a glove. And the excellent thing is that when the cover fits so well, there won’t be any loose parts and the entire boat will be fully protected.
Naturally, the custom-made cover is more expensive than the universal, but if you’re looking for perfect boat protection then this is a smart investment.
Universal covers consider the centre-line length and beam width on boats. Some manufactures take hull style into consideration as well. These covers are excellent if you want inexpensive but good protection. The lower price is because they won’t cover the exact measurement like a glove; however, these covers will do their job quite well. Some boat owners opt for a universal cover since they can’t get a custom cover for the brand or size of the boat they own. Of course, if you get a universal cover, always go for top-quality brands.
Maintaining Your Cover
You’ll have to take care of the cover as well if you want to keep it in good shape for a long time. But nevertheless, cleaning the cover is a lot easier than cleaning the whole boat. You only need to periodically wash the fabric down with a soap and water solution so the cover can keep its vibrant and clean look. You can wash it with a garden hose or power wash (these can rinse everything off).
This simple maintenance should be done every once in a while. When you aren’t using the cover, keep it in a storage bag. It will keep the cover neat and folded in a secure space protected from the elements.