Ultimate Guide to Kayak Storage
If you've recently bought or thought about buying a kayak, one thing you need to consider is where you'll store it. A kayak is a large piece of equipment, and keeping it in the best shape means it needs to be stored appropriately. In most Australian homes, you'll have two options for storage, in the garage or outside in the backyard; some people may have access to a storage unit, but you can consider this as a garage.
This guide will show you the options available for garage storage and take you through the best kayak storage options outside. If you haven't purchased a kayak, you can examine your storage space and choose a kayak of a suitable length for that area.
While storing a kayak outside is achievable, it is best to keep your kayak indoors for the best results (including avoiding issues with theft). But, if that's not an option, outside storage is achievable.
Indoor kayak storage options
The storage option you choose for your garage may rely on how much space you have available. Luckily, there are some very creative methods for storing kayaks. Space is not to only consideration, as you can also think about access and how often will you take your kayak out?
While the kayak is stored inside and out of the weather, you can still use covers and keep it off the ground. Here are three of our favourite options for storing a kayak in a garage.
Slings are an excellent method for keeping your kayak off the ground and out of your way. A kayak sling (e.g. Railblaza StarPort) will keep your kayak secured against the wall. The weight the slings can hold is essential to determine if these are suitable.
In most situations, you can install two slings per wall section. If installed in this manner, they'll minimise the amount of space your kayaks take up in the garage. Slings will need to be installed into a stud so that the weights are distributed evenly. When placing your kayak in a sling, it needs to sit approximately a third of the way from the stern or bow. Hanging a kayak from the bow or stern handles can warp it over time.
A kayak hoist works similarly to the sling but is raises your kayak to the roof. A hoist will give you the most amount of room in your garage, as it you can park your car underneath. If you're very skilful or position the hoist properly, you can even load and unload your kayak onto a set of roof racks.
A hoist will usually use a pulley system for easy raising and lowering. You may find some sophisticated systems are automated or removed controlled. Hoists are often considered the best method for storing a kayak in your garage because they provide maximum support and will maximise the space in your garage.
A wall-mounted kayak rack is similar to slings, but they use hard rails instead of straps. The advantage of racks over slings is they will support more weight, and some come with a separate shelf to store paddles, fishing rods and other gear.
You can find wall racks of all different shapes and sizes. A typical style of the wall storage system is the J-rack and the flat rack. Wall racks offer easier access than some other storage options as it is faster to get your kayak in and out.
A folding stand supports your kayak while keeping it from resting on the ground. These stands are ideal for use in a garage or outside (with a kayak cover). A set of kayak stands will not save a lot of room in your garage, but they are ideal when you don't want to drill into your walls or after an easy and portable kayak storage solution.
Outdoor kayak storage options
If you don't have a garage (or a big enough shed), your next option is to store your kayak outdoors. Storing a kayak outdoors means you need to do a little preparation to protect it from the elements.
Whenever your kayak is stored outside, it should be kept covered. Most modern kayaks are UV stabilised, but under prolonged exposure, this can degrade. Using a cover will prolong the life of your kayak, and it has the added benefit of keeping rain, dirt and bugs out.
If you don't have a purpose-built kayak cover, it is possible to use a tarp. If you are using a tarp or other covering, make sure it doesn't wrap completely around the kayak, as this may trap moisture and provide a breeding ground for mould and fungus. If possible, suspend the tarp just above the kayak to allow for air to flow.
Excessive heat can cause your kayak to warp. If possible, keep your kayak in an area that has a shade for most of the day (e.g. under a deck). Try to keep your kayak away from trees and other plants, and they may deposit large amounts of leaf litter. A DIY purpose-built structure can provide shelter from the sun and a cool place for your kayak.
People taking things that do not belong to them are an annoying part of society. In most situations, a cable lock (e.g. FPV-Power Kayak Alarm Lock) is enough to see off any opportunistic thieves. Make sure the cable lock is threaded through a stable structure. You can also remove any easily detached items, such as rod holders.
Building DIY kayak storage
Kayak racks can be bought as an off-the-shelf design, or you can custom build your own. When building your kayak storage racks, it may pay to look at some existing kayak storage ideas. If you need to store multiple kayaks, building a dedicated structure in your backyard may be the best solution.
If you're looking to create a kayak storage rack inside your garage, check that you have enough wall space and the correct mounting hardware. As with most DIY projects, make sure you draw up plans and have a clear vision and goals for your kayak storage system.
FAQ for kayak storage
How do I install kayak racks in my garage?
All kayak storage systems will come with detailed instructions. However, having a good tool kit with a drill, stud finders, and screwdrivers is a great idea to get started.
How do you build a kayak storage rack?
There are many DIY plans and photos available on the internet. Start by measuring out your wall space or outdoor storage area to get a good idea of what you're working with. Then you can start playing around with ideas.
How do you store a kayak over the garage door?
A kayak hoist is the best method for storing a kayak above your garage door. Measure the total depth available and purchase a suitable kayak hoist system.
Can a kayak be stored upright?
Kayaks can be stored in a vertical position. However, most garages do not have a high enough roof to support vertical storage systems.
How do you lift a kayak with a pulley?
Attach the straps about a third from the bow and stern and tighten them to avoid slipping. Then you can start using the pulley to lift the kayak. You can lock the pulley in place after you're at the desired height.
How do you store kayak accessories?
The best place to keep kayak accessories is in a separate container. Some people may leave accessories in the kayak, but you need to be careful about overloading the storage system.
What is the best way to store kayaks?
The best way to store kayaks is what works the best for your situation. If you need accessibility, then the wall racks may be best. If you don't have a lot of spare room, then a well constructed outdoor shed may be the best option.
Where to buy kayak storage accessories
At Kayaks2Fish, you can find the best kayak storage systems. These systems are cost-effective, easy to install and will help to avoid damage often caused by improper storage. If you need help choosing which storage options are best for you, please call our team, and we'll offer our expert advice.