How to Choose the Right Boat Fender
If you are a boat owner, you may feel a bit overwhelmed with the number of boat accessories available to you. There are accessories that merely add to the aesthetic of your boat, while others add functionality. For functional accessories, one that you should never be without is a boat fender. A boat fender serves the purpose of shielding your boat from a dock or another boat. Still this does not mean that you can choose just any fender. In this article, we will go over some quick tips to help you decide between boat fenders.
The first decision you will have to make is how big or small you want your fender to be. This of course largely depends on the size of your boat, but generally you will want protection relative to the size of your boat. For every 4′-5′ of boat length, you should get 1″ of diameter for cylindrical fenders and 2″ for those that are spherical. Even so, the size of one’s boat is not all that should be taken into account. It also highly depends on what conditions your boat will be facing on a regular basis. As a general rule, larger fenders are recommended for larger areas of protection.
Now you must decide whether you are going to hang your boat fenders vertically, or horizontally. A flat fender will only have the ability to wrap vertically around the boat. They are also more suited to smaller boats. Center rope tube fenders can be used in either alignment. The ropes help keep this type of fender in place, since its large form requires more security. You will want to choose the alignment based on the intensity of movement your boat experiences.
Lastly, it must be decided how much you care about the fender aesthetically. To get a fender that matches perfectly, it may end up adding to the cost of the fender. Alternatively, you can always purchase a cover for your fender and use that to blend the styles. The cover will also help with your boat’s overall cleanliness. You may also wish to invest in fender racks and cleaning supplies when getting the cover. With these accessories, you can have multiple fenders handy, and be able to clean them all effectively.
It can be a little confusing when you first try to purchase a boat fender. The modes and styles of boat fenders can vary greatly from one to the next. Still, it should not be debated whether or not you need one. The safety of your vessel depends heavily on your fender. You may have gone this long without one, but the longer you go without one opens up more chances for your boat to need costly repairs. As long as you get the proper size and all the necessary accessories, you will be fine.