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A tough and durable boat cover is an essential piece of equipment for any boater. It’s the first line of defense for your vessel, and it protects against more than just a downpour of rain. A good cover will be able to protect your boat from the effects of ultraviolet light, salt spray, rain, and wind. Without a decent cover, your boat’s interior, electronic, and upholstery could be exposed to rust, corrosion, and more!
A heavy-duty boat cover will also be able to deter thieves, and keep people honest. A covered boat will require more effort to gain entry to, which will send thieves packing in search of easier prey. While theft-deterrence isn’t the most obvious thing to consider, it’s worth keeping in mind. In fact, it’s just one of many overlooked factors to take into account when out searching for a new cover.
That’s why we’ve decided to list some of our favorite products to point you in the right direction. We’ve also put together a small buying guide to help you make the right decision, finding the best boat cover that works for you!
The StormPro range of boat covers from Classic Accessories has a cover to suit almost all small boats. They have coverings for V-hull fishing boats and runarounds, fish and ski boats, tri-hull, center console, t-top, and deck boats. These products also come in a variety of sizes, from 12’ x 68” all the way up to 24’ x 116”.
Each cover is manufactured from a tough and durable 600D StormPro marine canvas, which is made from 100% polyester. It’s designed to protect your boat against all weather, repelling water and resisting moisture, without stretching or deforming in the sun. This is a heavy-duty cover that will protect your boat no matter the situation. It’s also made without the use of carcinogenic PVC materials.
The covers come complete with super strong elastic hems, with elastic cord installed in the hems to provide a safe and secure, tailored fit. The elastic hem is complemented with the StromPro’s practical strapping system, which consists of quick-release buckles and straps that keeps the over tight and secure. Another cool addition is the support pole accessory; this pole can be installed to prevent water from pooling.
Other great features include trailering straps and a storage bag.
Suitable For: All small boats types, from V-hull to center console boats
Available Dimensions: Varying sizes up to lengths of 24 ft and widths of 106″
Materials: Marine grade polyester canvas
Warranty: 5-year hassle-free warranty
The MSC brand has a number of interesting boat coverings on offer, from outboard covers to pontoon boat covers, but the brand’s standout product is their trailerable boat cover that’s designed specifically for covering your boat, and moving and storing it safely on a trailer. If you’re looking for a cover that can protect your boat during transit, long-term storage, for short haul journeys, and more, then this could be the one for you.
The MSC Trailerable boat cover is manufactured from a strong, durable, and weather-resistant 600D marine grade polyester fabric with a double polyurethane coating. It’s highly water-resistant, tear-resistant, resists UV damage and the grown of mildew, and can pack down to a small size without putting any unnecessary stress on the fabric.
An elastic hem gives this cover and tight and secure fit, and thanks to the quick-release buckle system and adjustable straps, this cover will stay in place even in the heaviest of weather. Since it was designed especially for trailering, you can rest assured knowing that this cover won’t come loose, blow away, and leave your boat vulnerable to weather damage.
Available in wide range of practical sizes and smart color options including Black, Beige, Grey, Forest Green, Navy, and Pacific Blue, there’s sure to be a an MSC boat covering that suits your needs. Each MSC heavy duty boat cover comes with a storage bag for easy transportation and storage, and a three year warranty.
Suitable For: V-hull, tri-hull, center console, runabout boats
Available Dimensions: Lengths from 14’-24’ and widths from 68”-102”
Materials: Marine grade polyester with PU coating
Warranty: 3 year warranty
If you’re in need of a no-frills cover for your v-hull runabout or bass boat, then you should check out the range from AmazonBasics. There are only three sizes to choose from, but these inexpensive covers are excellent if they happen to fit your dimensions. These lightweight covers offer heavy duty protection, and come at an affordable price point.
The three available sizes are designed specifically for V-hull runabouts or bass boats. They’re suitable for v-hull runabouts of either 17’-19’ x (up to) 102” or 20’-22’ x (up to) 106”, and for bass boats with lengths between 16’ and 18.5’ with widths of up to 98” wide.
No matter which cover you choose, they are all made from 100% woven polyester that offers tough protection against the rain, wind, snow, and UV rays. It won’t shrink or stretch, and thanks to the elasticated edging it will remain in place as you cover. However, don’t rely on the elastic alone—for the best results and a real tight fit, always use the straps, especially if you’re trailering your boat on the highway.
This inexpensive AmazonBasics boat cover is a fairly strong product considering its relatively low price tag. If you’re looking for a waterproof boat cover on a budget, and you’re not too fussed about any bonus features or fancy accessories, we recommend giving this one a try. It does come with a drawstring bag though, which is a nice extra.
Suitable For: V-hull runabouts and bass boats
Available Dimensions: Three size options
Materials: Marine grade polyester canvas
Warranty: Limited 1 year warranty
This good quality cover from iCover is arguably one of the best boat covers on the market with one of the lowest price points. If you’re looking for an inexpensive cover that can be used for trailering your boat, offers long-term protection, and can defend against a wide range of elements, then this is worth adding to your shopping list.
Available in 6 different sizes, for lengths ranging from 12’ to 24’, and for beam widths of up to 100”, the iCover can be used for a variety of boat styles, including V-hull, Tri-hull, Pro-style, fishing boat, bass boat, and runabout.
The iCover is manufactured from 300 denier polyester with a polyurethane and PVC coating. It’s also available in a tougher 600 denier canvas, though it costs more. The tough canvas material can withstand tearing, fading, and cracking, whilst simultaneously resisting water, wind, and UV rays. The cover comes equipped with an elasticated hem and strong buckle and strap securing system.
The best feature of this cover has to be the air ventilation. Unlike many other covers on the market, iCover has paid particular attention to the placement of air vents. This helps to allow air to circulate, preventing the build-up of moisture and condensation, which can lead to damage. The air vents also help to channel the wind, making trailering a joy.
An optional support pole can be bought as a very useful accessory.
This excellent Brightent boat cover is manufactured from a strong 600D woven polyester with a tough polyurethane coating, designed specifically for marine grade applications. It’s waterproof, water repellent, UV-resistant, and tear-resistant, which will keep your boat protected from everything that Mother Nature can throw at it.
It’s available in three sizes: for boats 14’-16’ long, with a beam width of up to 90”, for boat’s 17’-19’ with beam widths up to 95”, and for boats with lengths between 20’ and 22’ with a beam width of up to 100”.
What makes this boat cover from Brightent really stand out is the fact that it features so many straps and tie downs as standard. It comes complete with an elastic hem for a secure fit like many other covers, but it also features 9 securing straps: 4 upper belts, 4 lower belts, and a very useful 18-meter (59 ft) long strap for extra security. It also features a small storage bag. These are nice extras for such a budget product.
It’s a budget cover, so don’t expect a seriously long lifespan. However, if you take care of it and don’t have ridiculously high expectations, this cover could last you a good few years. That’s a pretty good return on your investment. It’s affordable and will do the job—but it may not last forever.
Suitable For: V-hull, Tri-hull, and runabouts
Available Dimensions: 3 sizing options
Materials: 600D woven polyester
Warranty: Limited 1 year warranty
A Buying Guide For Boat Covers
Buying boat covers doesn’t have to be a complicated process. In fact, it’s quite easy. All you’re looking for is a waterproof boat cover with a tight fit, that can comfortably cover your boat without causing any damage. If it fits your boat and your budget, then you’re onto a winner. However, if you want to make sure you get the best boat cover for your needs, here’s all you need to know!
There are different boat covers for different types of boats. Some can be used for a variety of boat shapes and styles, while others are designed specifically for one kind or another. For example, a cover may suit V-hull or Tri-hull boats, but may not accommodate a center console fishing boat.
Before you begin your search, make sure you know what kind of boat you own. This will ensure that you’re searching for a boat cover that will give you a good fit. For the best results and the tightest fit, it’s best to find a cover that’s specifically for your boat type.
Similarly, it’s also very important to know your boat’s dimensions. A close fit will offer better protection against the elements, and will ensure hassle-free trailering, without any flapping. Unless you’re investing in an expensive custom boat cover, you’ll probably have to find something that loosely fits your boat’s dimensions.
Your boat length can easily be measured by measuring from the tip of the bow to the stern in a straight line. The overall length of your boat should include any rear deck extensions. If you have an outboard motor, this may need a special motor cover for guaranteed protection.
A boat’s width, or beam, is measured at the widest point of a boat, from the outboard point on one side, directly across the deck to the outboard point on the other side. In the US, these dimensions are measured in feet and inches. For example, a small boat may be 14 feet long by 68 inches (14’ x 68”).
When buying a boat tarp or boat cover it’s best to look for marine grade materials that have been specially engineered to resist adverse weather conditions, with enough strength and durability to endure being pulled, stretched, and blown around.
Most boat covers are made from top quality marine grade canvas, such as a 300D or 600D polyester. Naturally, the higher the number of your boat cover material, the stronger the fabric, so the 600D will be a superior choice. It needs to be tough and durable in order to keep your boat as protected as possible.
You should also pay attention to any other materials used too. Some coverings feature a single or double PU coating for added protection. Sometimes, it can also stop water from getting out and prevent air from circulating. Make sure to check whether this is a feature you want before investing. A moisture build-up can lead to mildew, mold, and rot, which isn’t ideal.
When choosing boat covers, consider what environment you’ll be using them in. For example, if you live in a hot and humid environment, you may need a cover with plenty of ventilation to prevent mold from building up underneath. If you live in a colder climate, you may want a cover that can resist snow and ice during long winters.
Make sure to research what qualities a cover has before investing. Some have superior UV protection to others, while some have higher degrees of water repellency than others. It’s even worth taking into a account other contributing factors. If you park your boat under a tree, make sure you get a cover that can defend your boat from bird droppings or falling fruit too. There’s more to a cover than UV resistance and waterproofing!
Some covers come with adjustable straps, others with support poles. Before you decided to buy any of these boat covers, think if any of their extra features will be useful to you.
Adjustable straps or a quick-release buckles and strap system will make highway travel much easier. These straps can be used for a secure tie-down, allowing you to trailer your boat in a safe and secure way, without fear of your cover flapping around and coming loose.
A support pole can be extremely useful. These support poles can be stood upright under the cover to prevent water pooling in a certain place, which could lead to water damage.
Elastic hems, tie-down holes, and storage bags are also popular features.
Read The Reviews
Always read as many boat cover reviews as you can before hitting the buy button, because there might be something interesting or relevant in the comments. For example, a cover may be advertised as fitting boats of certain dimensions, when in reality they may be a little small. Similarly, they may say that they’re designed to fit a certain type of boat, but they may not be.
Reading the customer reviews is the best way to get an unbiased opinion of a product, giving you a good idea of a product’s quality, potential longevity, and a company’s customer service. If you’re a boat owner, it’s better to get the opinion of other boat owners, and the best place to find quality boat cover reviews is in the comments section on any e-commerce platform.
Joe Appleton is an outdoor enthusiast who loves everything from bushcraft and hiking to wild camping and boating. If he’s not out in the woods, you’ll find him out on the water.