How to Store Your Composite Kayak

Storage Tips for Fiberglass, Kevlar, and Carbon Fiber Kayaks

Kayak storage
Alan Levine/Flickr/CC BY-SA 2.0

Kayakers take a lot of pride in their boats. This holds doubly true for paddlers of fiberglass, Kevlar, carbon fiber, and other composite kayaks. They are light, glide through the water, look super cool, and, of course, expensive. It is, therefore, absolutely essential that these water vehicles are stored properly so that no damage befalls them when they aren’t even in use. Here are some tips on how to store your composite kayak and protect your baby and investment.

Store Your Composite Kayak Indoors

Composite kayaks are no little matter. That is they are rather long. This means that unless you have a garage, you’re forced to make some pretty difficult compromises. Whatever you do, you really want to store your kayak indoors. This will protect your investment from theft, the sun’s damaging UV rays, rodents, bugs, and reptiles from making your boat a home, and any inclement weather that could blow things into contact with your kayak.

Store Your Composite Kayak Using Straps or a Special Rack

You’ll need to plan out a long-term strategy on how to store your 14 foot plus behemoth of a boat. Luckily, unlike their plastic counterparts, composite kayaks don’t, for the most part, deform or lose their shape. They are, however, more fragile when it comes to getting damaged. Therefore, whatever you do, don’t just lean a composite kayak against a wall in your garage. This is how things end up placed on, leaned on, and fallen on your kayak. You’ll need a space you can count on to be dedicated just for this purpose.

Hanging your kayak up is usually the most ideal situation, as it uses no floor or shelf space and will eliminate the problem of things falling on your kayak. Straps with padding should be used to prevent wear from rubbing between the strap and the kayak. Since most straps don’t come padded, you can put a towel or foam between the kayak and the strap once in place.

The next best way to store your kayak, if hanging it is not an option for you, is to build a shelf system and use padded contoured supports to hold your kayak up. If you go this route, the temptation will be to place other things on the shelf with your boat. And given enough time you may even lean things against your kayak or place things on or even in it. Resist that urge, as convenient as it may seem at the time.

Plan for Ease of Access to Your Kayak and Storage Location

It's one thing to have the perfect place to leave your composite kayak while not in use, it's another altogether if you can’t easily get it there. You’ll need to consider this whenever you rig up what you will use to hang or store your kayak. If you have to go through a series of machinations to get your kayak into position in your garage, chances are you’re going to bang around in the process. You should be able to walk it straight into where it will be stored with no turns, tilts, or leans.