Best Cockpit Covers. Comparison & Buying Guide
Owning a boat or a kayak can bring you lots of satisfaction and help you relax after a long day of work. You can pick up plenty of relaxing outdoor and water activities, as long as you agree to invest in the required protective equipment and other handy accessories. This also includes looking after your boat or kayak the best possible way, meaning to purchase a good cockpit cover. After going through plenty of online product reviews, we have concluded that a product worthy of your attention is the Seals Cockpit Seal. It is made of a heavy-duty and tear-resistant material, it provides superior protection against harmful UV rays, and it also comes with a hull strap security feature. If the Seals Cockpit Seal is not available for purchase immediately, you can also opt for the Seals Sprayskirts Neoprene as a great alternative in terms of price and quality.
Our top choices
Given the multitude of options available on the market, it would be impossible for us to tell you about all the cockpit covers. However, in order to make things easier for you, we have gathered a list of the top products according to customers and we have showcased them below.
Seal Cockpit Seal
The item is made of a quality fabric that is heavy-duty and tear-resistant. It offers superior UV protection so it will last against high temperatures during the summer, as well as against all other unfavorable weather conditions, including heavy rain, wind or snow.
Thanks to the double-stitched seams, this product won’t wear or tear apart easily, meaning you can rely on it for a long time from now on. This cover will protect your kayak cockpit from water and debris while traveling or storing your kayak.
Most of the customers who purchased this cover are very pleased with the product’s quality and protection capacities. It doesn’t only help with keeping away wind, sun rays or water but also spiders, bugs or snakes.
The item provides a very snug fit and it won’t fall down easily thanks to the hull strap security feature. However, it is easy to put on and take off so your kayak will be ready to use in just a matter of seconds.Buy from Amazon.com for ($39.95)
Seal Sprayskirt Neoprene
As with all other products, we strongly suggest you to first carefully measure your cockpit and then purchase the item that will best fit your requirements. Keep in mind that a cover too small won’t be able to protect the entire ensemble, while one too loose might allow insects or snakes to nest inside your kayak.
As a general rule, you can easily determine the right size of the cover by simply dividing the length of the cockpit to its width. The obtained result represents the size you need to purchase to ensure a snug and tight fit.
The ⅜-inch stitched bungee attachment to the rim will create a completely dry seal so you can truly cover the important parts of your kayak. As a result, the item will last longer and will pass the time test.Buy from Amazon.com for ($54.95)
The item is made of medium weight coated nylon to provide improved protection against harmful weather conditions, corrosion, water, dust or debris. This way you will increase the life expectancy of your product and enjoy more adventures with your kayak.
The cover also features double-stitched seams for improved protection and increased durability against major external factors, including heavy rains or harmful UV rays. In addition, the adjustable bungee cord rim attachment will prevent the item from falling off, ensuring a tight fit and maximum protection.
Most of the customers who purchased the product praised its snug fit and overall good price-quality ratio. On the other hand, while the item states that it is waterproof, some of the customers noticed that it won’t face rain or heavy waters for a prolonged period of time so it would be best not to keep your kayak outside during the winter.Buy from Amazon.com for ($34.95)
The product is made to provide maximum protection for your boat at a competitive price, and the company claims its items will last you for many years from now on. The cover is made of quality nylon that is waterproof and windproof but will also provide an excellent protection against harmful sun rays, wind, dirt, debris or insects.
The item features a durable and fully adjustable bungee cord in order to ensure a custom fit and offer protection for a wide array of kayaks, regardless of their brand or dimensions. In addition, the 2-inch thick raw neoprene fabric is specifically designed to surround the adjustable bungee and help you enjoy a tight grip and a secure fit.
The vast majority of customers who purchased this item agreed on its quality and claimed it is firmly and strongly made.Buy from Amazon.com for ($44.95)
BEST Marine&Outdoors Universal
What we liked the most about this product is that unlike other covers, this one offers maximum protection not only against different weather conditions but also against dirt, leaves, rain, sand or bugs. As a result, whenever you’re entering your kayak, you will enjoy a clean and safe environment so you can take your toy out for a ride immediately.
No matter where you choose to store the kayak – outdoor or indoors, this cover will provide improved protection so your product will look like new even after years of use.
The item is built to last as it is made of a waterproof 300D thick polyester fiber that protects your kayak from harmful UV rays and abrasions. It also features an adjustable drawstring bungee cord finished with double-stitched leather for a snug fit no matter the type or brand of your kayak.Buy from Amazon.com for ($30)
Choosing a reliable cockpit cover is not always an easy task, especially since there are plenty of items available for sale at reasonable prices. However, if you want to make sure you picked the right item for your own kayak’s needs, make sure to check the following features.
Sizing and fitting
If you’re looking for the best cockpit cover in 2018, you must first find the right size and fit for your own kayak. This is extremely important if you want to keep the inside of your kayak clean and safe against harmful weather conditions, excessive water, dust, debris or insects.
Most covers are available in plenty of sizes to choose from, but how do you make sure you opted for the right one? The first thing to do is measure your kayak’s cockpit width and length. Usually, these details are also available on the website you used for purchasing your reliable freshwater fishing kayak or on the package.
Finding the exact size of your cockpit is easily done by simply dividing the item’s total length to its width. For instance, if the cockpit is about 40 inches long and around 25 inches wide, the right size for your cover should be 1.6.
Make sure to carefully measure the cockpit prior to purchasing the cover or check some online cockpit cover reviews to see what size was ordered by other customers or what size they suggest for your own product. Also, check the manufacturer’s sizing guide and look for other information available online.
You will also want a tight and snug fit that will provide maximum protection for the interior of your kayak. In order to achieve this, you definitely need to purchase the right size but also opt for quality drawstring bungee cords to secure the cover and prevent it from falling down easily.
There are plenty of good materials that will provide increased protection for your stable sit-on-top kayaks cockpits. Depending on your budget and requirements, you can opt for items made of neoprene, nylon, polyester or a mix of nylon and neoprene. Each type of cover comes with its own perks and downsides, so it is really up to you to find the right fit for your own kayak.
Nylon is perfect if you’re looking for a cheap cockpit cover with decent protection against wind, dust, dirt, debris, and water to some extent, depending on its thickness. You must be careful to choose the type of nylon that will provide the type of protection you require.
Taking this into consideration, you can opt for full waterproof products, waterproof ones, and those that are partially waterproof and more breathable. If you plan on storing your kayaks or canoes outside, you should opt for the full waterproof type of nylon that will provide maximum protection so they won’t be affected by rains, snows, heavy winds or abrasion.
A breathable or slightly waterproof cover will best fit ultra-light inflatable kayaks that already come with their own built-in features to protect against abrasion or harsh weather conditions.
On the other hand, if you plan to perfectly seal your cockpit and offer full protection, you should opt for neoprene covers. They come in various thicknesses, according to your needs. They will cost you a little bit more but will not only protect the cockpit from water and debris, but also against insects, snakes, leaves, dust, debris, and other inconveniences.
These neoprene covers are also easy to wash and, thanks to their fabric thickness, will also protect your kayak from low temperatures, heavy snows, and frost.
Covers or spray skirts?
Another thing to consider is whether to opt for a regular cover or choose a spray skirt. Covers are mainly preferred when you paddle on warm waters and in temperatures that won’t require additional protection aside from a good fishing vest or a comfortable fishing jacket. No matter the type or thickness of the material you opt for, you can rest assured that a cockpit cover will meet your requirements.
On the other hand, if you opt for kayaking in cold waters, in low temperatures or rapid waters, you might want to consider a spray skirt to keep you and your reliable kayak seats fully protected against water and cold.
A spray skirt is made of four different parts, including a rand, a deck, a tunnel, and a grab loop. These skirts can also be made of nylon, neoprene or a combination between these two.
Keep in mind that nylon decks are usually more easy to attach to your body and release than neoprene while the ones made of neoprene will perfectly seal the cockpit and your body to prevent water from getting inside the boat.