Here are a few tips to prolong the lifespan of your kayak:
After every paddling adventure, rinse your kayak, any moving parts (rudder, foot braces, etc.), and accessories/equipment (paddle, life jacket/PFD, etc.) thoroughly. A quick rinse keeps everything moving smoothly and slow down corrosion on metal parts.
Inspect your kayak, including accessories and moving parts, from top to bottom. Make sure there are no damages to your equipment and/or deep scratches that can cause leakage. If there are, acquire replacement parts and repair the deep scratches as soon as possible. This is also for your safety.
To prevent unnecessary wear/damages, DO NOT:
- drag the kayak across rough surfaces – this can cause deep scratches and thin out the material on the bottom
- buy the scupper kayak cart where the poles poke up through the scupper/drain holes – when you hit rocks and other obstacles the rods will twist and torque inside the scupper holes eventually cracking the scupper hole, killing the kayak.
- Welding the scupper holes is not recommended because the heat is concentrated causing the scupper hole to melt.
- Any welds in that area have a very poor history and do not last.
- sit or stand on the kayak when it is on shore (for children and adults)
- stand on kayaks when on the water (mainly for adults)
- while some kayaks are designed for standing in the footwells, point loading all your weight in an area on the size of your foot can be dangerous to most kayaks
How To Store Your Ocean Kayak
Keep your kayak inside or under a cover. If you decided to use a tarp as a cover, store the kayak in an area where there is a lot of shade.
By storing a kayak on the edge, upside down, standing, or hanging horizontally will prevent any distortions to the hull of the kayak. Avoid using the scupper holes (aka drain holes) and the toggle handles as latch points to hang the kayak.
To secure your kayak, simply run a cable through your scupper holes.