kayaking, gear, adventure, river trip

How to Store Your Kayaking Gear

July 7, 2021// Leave a comment

If you want your kayaking equipment to last as long as possible, it's essential to store it properly. Your gear is a considerable cost investment, so maintaining it for the long term will help you get as much value from it as possible. Even if you choose to upgrade to newer equipment, you'll be able to sell older gear more easily if it's been well maintained. Here, we'll outline in detail how to properly stow and maintain kayaking gear.

Due to their size, kayaks can be a challenge to store easily. However, properly storing your kayak, life jackets, and other related gear will keep them in optimum–and safe–condition. 

Where to Store Your Kayak

If possible, it's ideal for storing your kayak indoors so that it's sheltered and protected from pests like insects or rodents. If you can't keep it indoors, be sure that you protect it from the sun and weather. Temperature extremes are not suitable for your kayak or any of your related gear.

If you have an inflatable or folding kayak, storage is straightforward; simply roll or fold your boat up and store it in a cool, dry location. However, if you have a traditional hard-shell kayak, finding a storage space for it can be difficult due to the size and weight of the boat.

Consider the following factors when deciding where to store your boat: exposure to sunlight, moisture, and extreme temperatures should be kept to a minimum.

  • Sunlight: The ultraviolet rays emitted by bright sunlight can degrade almost any kayak hull material, including fiberglass, plastic, and coated fabric, among others.
  • Weathering: Exposure to moisture from rain and snow consistently can cause hull materials to deteriorate over time.
  • Heat: Because extreme heat can cause hull materials to deform, you must keep your boat away from heat sources, out of rooms that get extremely hot, and out of direct sunlight.
  • Cold: While cold temperatures aren't as dangerous as high temperatures, repeated freezing and thawing can cause damage to your boat. The importance of this is magnified if you have a fiberglass boat that has been repeatedly exposed to moisture during storage.

How to Store Your Kayak

You should try to store your kayak on a rack that's specially designed for the purpose. To conserve floor space, you might opt to suspend your kayak from solid rafters. If you suspend it, be sure that the hull points upward to the ceiling, and never suspend your kayak by the grab hooks or you risk bending it.

Before mounting or suspending your kayak, be sure to clean it. Whether it's been in fresh or saltwater, avoid using chemicals or heavy detergents to clean its surface. Instead, opt for clean water and gentle soap. Thoroughly dry all surfaces before you store your kayak. Don't forget to clean your kayak's accessories, including its paddles and life jackets, and keep those in a clean, dry place as well.   

Use these tips to keep your kayaking gear in tip-top condition and ready for use. In some cases, especially when your equipment involves a substantial investment, you may want to acquire some insurance for these items and discuss additional care steps with your insurance provider.

Originally posted on Porch.com


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