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If you own a boat you know how important it is to protect your investment from wet, wind, weather, and the occasional bird dropping.

When buying a boat cover you need to consider the fabric, the fit, and the support.

Fabric

Not all fabrics are equal. There are four main factors that affect how durable, waterproof, breathable and stable the boat cover fabric is. The following factors affect your choice of selection.

Fabric Material

  1. Acrylic is a high end material, usually only in heavier weight fabrics (9 0z. plus).
  2. Polyester is often a mid to top range fabric, typically followed up with a three or five year warranty depending on the fabric weight.

The industry standard for a marine fabric is the venerable Sunbrella marine fabric, with the Pacific Blue being the single most popular color in marinas everywhere. All boat cover manufacturers offer either Sunbrella or Sunbrella equivalent fabrics.

Fabric Weight

  1. Fabric weight is measured in ounces per square yard.
  2. The weight of the fabric is often (but not always) telling of both the warranty and lifespan.
  3. Heavier fabrics are in the 9 oz. range, lightweight fabrics are in the 6.5 oz. range.

Fabric Weave

  1. How tightly woven the fabric is will indicate durability – a tighter fabric will last longer.
  2. How big the weaving threads (thread count) are will also indicate durability – the smaller the threads for a given weight will produce a more durable fabric.
  3. A 9 oz. tight weave fabric will last longer than a 13 oz. course weave fabric.

Color

  1. Of interest here; Marine or Pacific Blue (a middle blue) seems the most stable color.
  2. Reds and Yellows fade faster and wear out sooner than other colors.
Fabric Comparison Chart

Compare top fabrics and see which one fits your needs.

Fit

The better the fit the better your boat cover will function for you long term.

Trailerable boat covers often come with a tighter fit and straps to keep the cover snug while trailering. However, if you are just looking for a cover to keep your boat dry and aren’t planning on trailering it any time soon, Taylor Made Products makes a line of economy covers that may fit with your budget.

Westland, TaylorMade Products, and ShoreMaster all make trailerable boat covers.  These covers are either custom made to your boat’s make and model or come in a less-snug, semi-custom boat cover version that is less expensive.

Westland’s custom boat covers come with 1/4″ draw rope in the hem for a snug fit as well as 12 straps with buckles for securing the cover.  Taylor Made Products custom boat covers are secured with tie down straps made from 1″ wide heavy duty webbing, plus a nylon rope in the boat cover hem with patented rope lock for cinching the cover tight.

Support

Not your boat cover

Not your boat cover

You don’t want your boat to look like this. Supporting your boat cover when storing your boat for longer periods will help prolong the life of your boat cover and ultimately the life of your boat.

Get a pole. The single cheapest way to prop up the cover and prevent water pooling while also offering ventilation is with a vented pole assembly. They are incredibly easy to install in any cover, in virtually any location.

Taylor Made Boat Cover Support System

 Get a strap system. This is useful for the large cockpit expanse on most boats and will prevent the huge, tearing puddle that can happen. There are mounts at four corners connecting at the center with a pad on pole arrangement. 

Get some Bows. It is hard to beat a system of Boat Cover Bows with their matching Sockets for keeping the cover arched. This is the most foolproof way to keep the boat dry and it gives you a fighting chance against snow.Boat Cover Bows in Fiberglass or Wood

Covering your boat will ensure that it stays safe from the elements. Go2marine offers great prices on a wide selection of boat covers to fit your budget and your boat. Shop Now >

ENDS NOVEMBER 15TH, 2011 – Free Shipping on Taylor Made Custom Boat Covers – and a Free Pole and Vent!

Buy a quality Taylor Made custom boat cover in Ultima, Hotshot or PolyCotton fabric and receive a free vent and pole! Taylor Made boats covers are sewn with Gore Tenara thread. The stitching is guaranteed for the life of the fabric.

Why a vent and pole? Don’t let your interior suffer while stored for the winter from mold and mildew damage. Proper ventilation can keep these boat destroying fungi from attacking your boat! The patented Boat Vent II installs quickly and easily, with no screws or fasteners. The venting area provides for greater volume of exhaust air while closing the top to bottom gap – increased air movement while keeping water out!

The installed T-top boat cover keeps your boat clean and dry

Go2marine offers Taylor-Made T-top Center Console Boat Covers for boats with fixed position “T” tops. These boat covers are built to accommodate a wide range of vessels, from 17.5′ to 26.4′. There are two groups of T-top covers, those that fit boats with no bow rails to 6″ bow rails and another group for those with taller rails, from 6″ up to 18″ bow rails. If you are uncertain how to measure your boat, follow these simple measurement guidelines.

Fabric and Construction:

The semi-custom T-top boat cover is manufactured from 6 ounce Hot Shot with a 5 year limited warranty. Exclusive for Taylor-Made boat covers, engine covers and other fabric products, they are  now sewn together with Gore Tenara thread. The thread is resistant to UV sunlight, saltwater, chemicals, acid rain and harsh environments; in fact, Gore stands behind the Tenara thread and guarantees that it will outlast ANY fabric it is sewn with. From the Acrylic Coated Polyester to the strap buckles and straps, these covers are made to stand up to years of service.

Installation:

Unlike T-top boat covers of the past, this pattern allow for two major design improvements.

  • The cover is made in 2 sections that can be zipped together
  • The cover can be installed by just one person – without a ladder.
Get started by pulling on the bow section…

After removing the cover from the box, separate the front and the back sections. Place the bow section over the bow and pull the cover on until it reaches the center cockpit. You may need to work from side to side. Now do the same with the stern section, pulling it on until it reaches the center console. Standing on the deck, secure and zip down one side 1/2 way, then the other side. Pull the zipped cover up under the T-top and secure. Step off the boat and zip the cover the rest of the way down on both sides.

Secure the zipped portion of the boat cover down on each side. Once you are done with the zippers and securing the straps across the zipper, move to the bow. Install the trailer strap on the bow, then work towards the stern. Here are the Complete T-Top Coat Cover Installation Instructions.

The result is a fabric boat cover that keeps out the elements and protects your investment for years to come.

From boating on the lake to tying up at the dock...

Go2marine with Taylor Made Marine Products is offering a drawing of $500 Gift Card for one lucky boater. Enter the Taylor Made Sweepstakes.

Taylor Made manufacturers a complete source of marine products and accessories. From the dock edging and guards right next to your boat to the fenders, buoys and mooring whips that keep your boat from contacting the dock. Taylor Made offers bimini tops, anchor shade umbrellas, misting systems and other products to protect you from the sun while on your boat as well as boat covers to keep your boats finish looking like new.

Tenara Thread - Lifetime Seam Warranty

Tenara thread is now used in all Ultima and Hotshot fabric products including boat covers, biminis and motor hoods. Tenara thread is guaranteed to outlast ANY fabric that it is used to sew – this means no more seams separating because the thread has failed to live up to the sun or weather.

Sweepstakes ends June 15th, 2011. No purchase necessary. See details below**

**You must be 18 years or older to enter. No purchase necessary. $500 Gift Card will be issued from a major credit card company. See full sweepstakes rules and details here.

Answer:

When shopping for a custom fit boat cover, if the description does not exactly match your boat, you may have to choose a semi-custom boat cover. These  covers tend to be less expensive and are often made from the same fabrics as custom boat covers. You will need to know the general shape of the boat (e.g. bay fisherman or a v-hull shaped boat), plus the dimensions of the beam and length of the boat. To do this:

  • Measure your boat’s centerline length (straight measurement from bow to stern) NOTE: Do not measure up and over the windshield, this is a straight line measurement.
  •  Measure your boat’s beam (at its widest point, usually near mid-ship). Do not select a boat cover unless the description exactly matches the year, make, model and any additional significant description of your boat.

Unless otherwise stated, boat covers will not fit modified boats with aftermarket accessories or boats with t-tops, ski/wakeboard towers or radar arches. If you have some doubt here, please contact the boat cover fitting specialists at Go2marine.com (800-998-9508). The cover may be available, but not posted on  the Go2marine web site.

Answer:

A boat cover will protect the topsides and interior of your boat from weather as well as reduce moisture or sun damage coming in from the environment. The number one enemy of a boat’s interior  during the off-season is moisture, second only to the harmful damage of solar rays. In addition, boat covers, covered with Ultra Violet coating, can prevent the harsh rays of the sun from causing damage to your boat.  Find more answers to your boat cover questions  here.

For most people, there comes a time when the boat must be put away for the season, the cabin locked up and all is left to fend for itself through the slumber of the winter. In most locations, you will use a boat cover or store a small boat in open or unheated storage. Larger boats will be secured to the dock or hauled out and winterized. The number one thing that people complain about is the smell when you get back to the boat in the spring. Go2marine is here to offer you some understanding about what happens during the winter with moisture and what can be done to protect your boat.

If your boat is small, you should first get a boat cover to protect the topsides and interior from weather and reduce moisture coming in from the environment. If your boat is large, you will need to seal it up well; yet still supply some form of ventilation. The number one enemy of the interior of boats in the off season is moisture.

The Problem(s)Fungi

Fungus (Fungi) consist of molds, mildews, yeasts and more, in this unique Kingdom that is neither animal nor plant. Fungi are part of the natural environment and operate primarily by breaking down dead organic matter such as fallen leaves and dead trees. Indoors, fungus growth tries to break down dead matter (wood, cotton, rayon and other organic materials) as well as pseudo-organic materials (like foam, polyester). Fungi reproduce by many means, including tiny spores; the spores are invisible to the naked eye and float through outdoor and indoor air. The more commonly recognizable mold and mildew may begin growing indoors when mold spores land on surfaces that are wet. There are many types of mold, and few of them will grow without water or moisture. This Kingdom makes up the most diverse life on the planet with worldwide distribution and some 1.5 million species. Fungi also has the ability to become an allergen, irritant or significant pathogen to humans.

Fungi gradually destroy the things that they grow on. Ultimately Fungi thrive as a  result of a high level of moisture encouraging their growth; rather than trying to just treat the fungi to kill them, resolve the moisture issue to prevent the problem that encourages Fungi growth.

The Solutions

Requiring Power – For boats that are left within the reach of an extension cord or dock cord you can help keep moisture to a minimum with a number of heater or dehumidifier options.

GoldenRodGoldenRod Dehumidifiers offer inherent safety features like no fan, simple installation, constant heat output and simplicity. They eliminate dampness, mildew, condensation and humidity with size options for areas from 100 to 500 cubic feet.

XtremeExtreme (Xtreme) Heaters takes a higher tech, more active approach to keeping moisture in control. The XtremeHeater Boat Heater is a heating element that is self-regulated at a pre-set temperature and automatically varies its wattage in order to maintain that pre-set temperature.

Non-Powered – If you leave your boat and there is no means to power anything, you still have several options.

solar ventHard mounting vents are are installed in the cabin top or on hatches and used when leaving your vessel for the season, while it is uncovered but still weather-tite. The big news here is solar vents that have the advantage of a fan without leading power wires.

DriThere are a variety of moisture control devices that rely on a ‘salt’ like Calcium Chloride to draw moisture from the surrounding air and can be used in nearly any location, onboard or under cover. The most common of these is the Dri-Z-Air Dehumidifier.

vent and poleLastly, if you have a boat cover, a vent with support pole can help in any season with moisture control. This system is easily installed with a pair of scissors and your hands for a clean vent installation.