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Considerations to Make When Choosing the Right Boat Canopy

by Scott Myers

Taking the powerboat out for a spin along the Gulf Coast in Florida is an amazing past time to enjoy, yet without a proper boat canopy the sun and spraying water can lessen the fun. Boat canopies are an important accessory for serious boaters. In this regard, let's discuss what considerations to make when choosing the right boat canopy.

Related Blog: Protect Your Boat Value With a Boat Lift [Video]



Boat Canopy Uses and Types

Boat canopies are used for a variety of purposes and come in many different types. The term boat canopy includes:

  • Bimini Tops
  • Boat Covers
  • Enclosure Curtains
  • Boom Awnings
  • Boat Dodgers
  • Boat Garages

Basically, anything that covers a boat, small or large, is considered a boat canopy. The main materials boat canopies are made from are:

  • Canvas
  • Vinyl
  • Acrylic
  • Polyvinyl Composite

Mainly, boat canopies are used to protect boaters from the beating sun, spraying water, wind, and any inclement weather. They also give boaters privacy from other boaters and/or people on shore.

Mostly, boat canopies provide a nice area of shade for boaters to relax under.


Picking the Right Type of Boat Canopy

One of the most popular boat canopies are Bimini tops, which are open-front top covers placed over the cockpit; the canvas top is laid over a metal frame, which can be folded down and put back up easily.


Choosing the right canopy depends on the type of boat, the type of use its intended for, and the preference of the boat owner. Some owners may want their cockpit to be fully enclosed with a canvas canopy with vinyl windows. This could be attached to the metal frame of a Bimini top or other cockpit top cover.


For boaters who want a boat canopy that covers more than just the cockpit, a boom awning may be the right choice. These tent like canvas covers can be placed over the boom of a sailboat or fashioned with metal poles on a powerboat.


Speed boaters may want to get a boat dodger canopy, in order to protect from spraying water. These are canvas covers fashioned to a metal frame that cover the front entrance and cockpit area of a boat. Vinyl windows allow for boaters to still enjoy the view while being protected from the spraying water; these are also called spray-hoods.


Finally, boaters may want to get a boat canopy garage to place their boats under when parked or stored, which will protect it from deteriorating in the sun and weather.


What You Need to Know About Boat Canopies

When choosing a boat canopy, inquire about the materials it's made from. Boat canopies need to be water and UV ray resistant, so they won't fade and deteriorate too quickly. The materials also need to weigh the right amount, in order to suit the application and be easy enough to handle.


Boat Canopy Color Choices

Another choice boaters have, of course, is the color of their boat canopy. While certain colors attract or detract the sun more than others, this is mostly an aesthetically pleasing choice. With the right boat canopy color, boaters can both look good and be protected as they cruise the Gulf Coast.


The Cost of a Boat Canopy

The last consideration we'll look at is the cost of the boat canopy. Bimini tops are at the lower end of cost, from around $200 - $900; boat dodgers from $500 - $1,500; boom awnings from $300 to $1,000; boat canopy full covers from $300 - $1,200. Boat owners may want to visit a boat canopy or restoration service to get a custom canopy solution.


Southwest Florida boat owners should also know that Duncan Seawall, Florida's largest residential marine contractor since 1979, is here to help them with their docks, seawalls, boat lifts, dredging, and electrical needs. Contact us today to learn more.

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