Boating is a lot more popular in the U.S. than most people realize. There are 17 million boats owned by Americans, 12 million of which are registered, with the remainder unregistered. Boating is a wonderful American pastime, so well-loved there’ve been movies both mainstream and low-budget focusing on the activity and the endurance it takes. All is Lost, William Grefe’s Racing Fever, and who could forget the stirring shots of cigarette boats racing around Florida that defined a decade in Miami Vice?
Boating can be a thrilling, adventurous hobby, but few can devote their lives to it. We are, after all, land-based mammals. So in the winter, we retreat to the shores. But boats require a great deal of maintenance, and even mild weather can cause the wood in a boat to bend and wear over time. That’s why so many have invested in metal boat covers to store their pride and joy during the winter.
For years, Get Carports has put the customer’s needs, desires, and safety at a premium that money couldn’t cover. But customers have always been surprised by our affordable, low prices, and it’s a pleasure to help ensure their boat’s upkeep.
But before we get into specifics, let’s focus on some things that could prevent drowning.
Leaving your boat anchored to the dock in the off-season may seem like a great, convenient option, but there are severe concerns in doing so. Thankfully a metal boat cover can save time, money, and indeed your life. You don’t want to start the season off with the great sail, only to experience difficulties, such as:
This is obviously the biggest concern, as boats are expensive and lives are precious. When you’re paying special attention to your boat in the summer, small cracks or leaks are easy to notice and fix before the problem grows. But leaving your boat dormant in the winter means you’re paying less attention, and those cracks will be harder to notice. You might miss a small underwater fitting that’s malfunctioning or a micro-crack that widened.
Then, you return to the dock, ready to start your season, and the shoreman has some tragic news. This is even more dangerous if you only notice after you’re on the water.
Over the winter, the weather can change drastically. An ordinarily peaceful dock is suddenly attacked with high winds, water levels rise, there’s rainfall, or even a blizzard. All of these conditions are sure to cause injury to your boat. Even if you’re the local weatherman with advance notice, moving your boat before a storm hits can be difficult. It’s better to have it stored long before you have to start worrying.
Barnacles play a vital role in our ecosystem, but they’re not so great for boats. Leaving your boat on the dock in the winter could make them decide your pleasure cruise is actually a perfect new habitat for them, and they can cause serious damage.
Just like a car, a boat is an attractive thing for a thief. According to the National Crime Insurance Bureau, there were over 5,000 boats stolen in just 2015, and 24 percent of those were in Florida. Worse, almost half of the boats were never recovered.
So if you leave your boat alone on a dock for a whole season, it’s a five-finger discount for anyone looking for a fast getaway on your dime.
There are reasons to keep your boats out of the water during the winter, but this applies to land storage as well. The wear and tear of the winter months can lead to blisters on the hull. Proper storage, where it can dry out for a few months, will make this much less common.
You may think that pulling your boat out of the water is enough, but simply letting it sit on the shore is still problematic, as we just showed you. Air temperatures change much more than they do in water, meaning the winter air is still harmful. Many of the same weather issues are still going to apply.
There’s also the issue of the sun, whose UV rays are going to wreak havoc on your paint job.
Your driveway is an option, and many Americans do it. But if you’re going to store it there, you will need a boat cover to protect it from the sun and other weather-related problems. Boat covers are reasonably affordable, and it may seem like a good solution. You also should be concerned about trees near your home, as a rough storm could cause one to crash hard on your luxury boat.
But just leaving a fancy boat in your driveway does very little to dissuade thieves. In fact, it may be enticing and attractive to them.
There’s also the issue of certain city ordinances that prevent people from storing boats in their driveways. Check with authorities before storing your boat at home.
Lastly, though you’ve saved your boat from a barnacle infestation, there’s still the concern of land-based pests like rodents that would love to stowaway, resulting in nothing as pleasant as An American Tail.
At last, a solution both practical, secure, and free of weather damage. There are facilities that can house your boat over the winter, each with its pros and cons.
Dry dock boat storage facilities can usually be found in areas where boating is prevalent, such as Florida. They’re usually close to water, making it easy to transport from the water. They store as many boats as they can fit in their area and also try to protect them from the weather.
These facilities are usually large, with boats forklifted into racks, sometimes three to four levels high.
They can be indoor or outdoor, with the latter usually having a metal cover. Indoor facilities are obviously more secure, which means more expensive to rent.
This leads us to one of the most significant downsides of dry dock storage. They can be very pricey to store over several months, and given their high-demand, it can often be difficult to even find a spot. In fact, in an area where a lot of people own boats, the expensive option might be your only one.
If you do manage to store it in a dry dock, you shouldn’t expect to visit it very often. Remember, your boat can be up to four stories above you, and setting up an appointment with the manager, getting the forklift operator ready, is always a hassle – particularly when the season starts, and everyone is trying to get theirs out of storage.
There are some upsides to dry dock storage facilities that can’t be ignored, like their security, which is usually top of the line. More extensive facilities even have dedicated teams of security guards making rounds.
But those facilities are going to charge you for that security, and if you decide to go for a cheaper dry dock option, which might mean the security is not as premium.
Lastly, though most of these facilities are located near the water, that’s not a guarantee.
More and more, homeowners are taking it upon themselves to find their own solution to weather, theft, and infestation concerns. Building your own boat storage facility can be a smart investment, both in keeping your boat safe and conveniently close to home.
Thankfully, metal boat covers have become much more affordable than most Americans realize. And they are a great option, for a number of reasons.
We’ve already talked about the high costs associated with renting a spot at a dry dock, and you’ve already spent a good chunk of your money on the boat itself. With the kind of strength and durability you expect from a solid steel boat carport, you can rest assured that metal carports are equally reliable. No longer will you have to worry about cracks or other weather-related issues that will cost a fortune to repair, and the shade will keep your paint job looking pristine.
From the foundation to the roof, every aspect of your metal boat carport is completely customizable. You have a number of options for a roof style, from regular, A-frame Horizontal or Vertical. There’s also the option of side paneling for additional protection. And, of course, a variety of colors to match the aesthetic of your home.
Metal boat covers come in 12 and 14 gauge framing—the lower the gauge, the thicker the steel. But whatever option you choose, the steel goes through a galvanization process to make it withstand high winds, excessive heat, or any storms you might encounter. No matter what weather you’re subject to, you can rest assured your boat is protected.
Many boat owners don’t settle for just one, or if they do, it becomes a lifelong obsession that they regularly want to upgrade. If you’re planning on doing renovations on your boat or adding a second, you’re going to need more space. Thankfully, steel boat covers are easy to expand if necessary.
No matter what style of steel building you’re working with, one of the first things you realize is how easy they are to assemble. Every component of your metal boat carport is delivered pre-cut, pre-drilled, and ready to be anchored on your property. If you opt to use a professional crew, it can take less than a day to install. But if you do choose to do it by yourself, you’re only looking at a few days at most.
There are plenty of reasons we’ve discussed to invest in a metal boat carport, and Get Carports is excited to get you in touch with our qualified and trained professional designed consultants who will help you make the right selection. We pride ourselves in customer satisfaction, with fast and free delivery and installation. So call us today at (800) 691-5221!
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