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Kayak Care and storage
In my family, it's all about changing the clocks. We change the batteries in the smoke detectors on,
"Spring Ahead," and we clean and pack up the kayaks and kayak equipment on,
"Fall Back." (this year it's the first Sunday in November)
With your kayaks, a little bit of TLC goes a long, long way.
Keeping your kayak and equipment in good working order will give you
many years of paddling pleasure with little extra expense.
If you have been kayaking all spring and summer
(especially in salt water) a good scrub is necessary before packing
that boat up for it's winter hibernation.
Salt, dirt and plain old scum get into every crevice.
Before you star flip through some of our old Yakking articles for
the recipes for natural cleaners.
http://www.kayakjam.com/Kayak info- Cleaning.html
Using a sponge and a light solution, just start wiping it all down,
giving it a good rinse when you're done.
- First hose your boat out with clean water.
- Carefully clean all surfaces inside and out.
- Most importantly, dry your boat thoroughly. (remember, you
don’t want bugs, especially mosquitoes, to have a happy winter
home in your boat.)
- Spray moving parts like rudders with wd-40 so they don’t
corrode. Then top it all off with some UV –protective spray
(available at most boat and sporting goods stores)
remembering that the sun can damage boats as
well as your skin. It also adds on a nice shine.
- If you have a fiberglass boat a little marine boat polish will
bring back the shine.
- Cover your boat to keep it clean and the critters out; a lesson
I learned first-hand when a chipmunk family moved into my
boat for it's long winter nap. A chewed-up hatch cover
made a comfy nest of rubber shreds for this very
grateful animal family!
Now you are ready for storage...
An important threat to kayaks is stress on the hull formation or decks. Particularly plastic kayaks
will take the shape of what they are sitting on over a long period of time. Storing plastic boats
is best on their sides or standing up. Most boats do well in hanging wall or free-standing racks
with slings that add no stress.
If you store at home there are a lot of commercially made storage racks
(I use a talic rack http://talic.com/) or sea horses that fold away when not in use,
but a simple saw horse with good padding will do.
Also, many kayak clubs and stores offer winter storage at minimal cost.
The final storage decision depends on the amount of space you have.
Let us know your favorite kayak cleaning solution and Remember...Clocks change on Sunday,
Nov. 6...SPRING AHEAD--FALL BACK!!