Late summer is the time for us to put aside kayaking and think about storing the boat temporarily. In fact, over time, the kayak may have scratches, cracks or faded paint. Many people think this process is simple and easy to do. But a specific plan of preservation and storage of the boats and accessories are extremely important. This can bring efficiency and safety for the next time you are out on the water. Here are a few tips for storing kayaks:
The first thing you need to do is find a large and airy place for storing kayaks. The kayak storage area needs a lot of space. Also, the kayak is required not to be in contact with the other items. Therefore, it is the best idea to put it in your house, such as in garages, basements, or warehouses …Importantly, the paddles are very expensive. So, you should put them in a safe place like the basement during the cold season.
If you live in a small apartment in the city and do not have enough space for this, you can take your boat to specialized places. For examples, they can be kayak clubs, marinas, or kayaks stores…
Besides kayak storage space, you must also pay attention to the control of temperature in that area. This can help you make sure the boat will not be too hot or too cold. It can lead to fragility or damage. Especially, never storing kayaks directly under the sunlight or near a heat source. It is because the heat will warp the plastic and the UV will reduce the life of the boat. Finally, check all parts of your boat and equipment carefully to see if there is anything that needs fixing immediately.
Remove detachable accessories such as straps, seats, and hatch cover out of the boat. Any accessories made from fabric should also be removed to store in a dry. And you should not place them in too cold place especially if you choose to store kayaks outside.
Get all sand and sea water left from the last kayak trip out of the boat. Then use a sponge with light cleaning soap to wipe out all the dirt in the boat. And don’t forget to clean the accessories from both inside and outside. The last step is rinsing thoroughly with water.
Do the same things with the paddle with a little brush, rinse off carefully and dry them with a soft towel. It is obvious that kayaks are designed for the underwater using purpose. However, if you store them in a humid environment for a long time, the vapor will start decaying the surface, causing rapid development of mold.
Storing kayaks by hanging it up. Do not let the straps or rope wrap tightly around the hull. Otherwise, it can cause distortion to the boat over time. You can also hang the boat on parallel bars to support the weight of the entire hull.
Protecting your kayak from hull damage
The fact that storing your kayak by hanging it on straps or put it up on bars can cause deformation or bent to the hull. Hull made from plastic, fiberglass or wood is all very susceptible to this problem.
To avoid warping hull, just storing kayaks along with support along its length. Remember to use the padded cradle, angled surfaces or straps. The best way to protect the hull from damage is to find a rack to store it in the garage or your backyard.
Furthermore, exposure to the weather elements for long periods can result in oxidation or impairment for the hull. Just store your kayak inside of your house to protect it from threats related to the weather. When storing your boat outdoor, make sure that your tarp also protects the kayak from the precipitation of rain, sleet, hail, or snow.
Also, avoid storing your kayak near heat sources such as a water heater or a furnace. As excessive heat may cause distortion to the hull.
Protecting your kayak from weather element
Although kayaks are designed to withstand the elements from external impact, it can still be damaged if it is stored outside too long. Therefore, to protect the boat from those elements, it is best to keep it indoor.
If you can’t afford to do that, there are some ways to protect your boat from the sun, extreme weather and other factors like insects and animals.
You can buy a special cover for the cockpit, or use a tarpaulin sheet to cover up. It is best to use a durable tarp that can withstand the weather effect. Besides, do not let it in direct contact with the hull, because you do not want to see mold to thrive in humid conditions. Make sure to tilt the tarp lightly so that rain water and snow will not remain stagnant.
Also, sunlight can harm on any material of the hull, from fiberglass, plastic to fabric. The best way to protect the boat from the sun is to store it indoor. If not, in a shady spot. Also, a protective spay layer such as 303 UV Protectant spray (for glass fiber) will help you protect your boat from a large ultraviolet ray. Thus, spray a thick layer on the hull at the beginning of every season and before storing your boat to get maximum protection.
If you store your boat outside or in a building with no heating system, be aware that freezing and thawing can cause damage to boats made from fiberglass. The reason is that once the water has seeped into the joints or cracks in the hull, they will expand and spread.
Protecting your kayak from thieves
Although kayaks can be quickly snapped stolen, you never want your beloved boat to fall into the hands of some thief. To protect your kayak from thieves, you need to store it inside the house. Because this will keep your kayak out of sight.
If you store the boat outdoors, place it in spots that are as hidden and difficult to steal as possible. To reinforce safety, you can wrap a security cable through the boat and lock it to a pole or fence.
In conclusion, when you bring home a brand new kayak from the store, you should bring it into the water right away and paddle. But over time, you will begin to notice that the paint is fading, the hull has some scratches, cracks or deformation. That is when you need a more elaborate storage system to keep your kayak as good as new, and of course, be safe from thieves.