There is more to choosing the right bimini top than width, length and height. Once you’ve measured your boat and considered the height clearance you want, you will have to choose the best fabric – based upon your boat’s use, storage and climate. Key characteristics to consider include:
Water Resistance: Various fabric treatments offer varying degree of water repellents, from wicking to waterproofing. Carver and Westland offer the latest technologies in water repellency.
Mildew Resistance: An important consideration in humid environments is the fabrics’ resistance to mold and mildew, which can grow on the interior as well as exterior of your bimini top cover.
UV Resistance: Various weaves influence resistance to ultraviolet sun rays, and fabrics are also pre-treated with UV inhibiting ingredients to enhance their sun blocking capacity.
Breathability: Porous fabrics allow moisture to escape the interior of your boat further reducing heat and mildew damage.
Strength: Measured in weight and weave, the strength of a bimini top fabric indicates its durability and ability to withstand normal wear-and-tear.
Tensile Strength: A fabric’s tensile strength measures the maximum amount of tensile stress – stretching, for example – that it can endure without breaking.
Colorfastness: Lighter colors tend to resist fading over brighter colors, so if your boat is stored in bright or year-round sunlight, you may want to choose white, linen, natural, silver or gray over red, blue or green.
Warranty: It’s also wise to compare warranties between different brands, as the warranty often points to the product’s quality.
SavvyBoater.com offers a wide variety of bimini top fabrics from Carver and Westland, and has compiled a comparison chart to help you choose the best fabric for your boat, environment and budget.
100% solution dyed polyester means Sun-DURA™ colors are part of the polyester fiber itself, rather than the dye adhering only to the surface of the fibers. Seven-ounce marine grade polyester offers superior resistance to harmful UV rays, fading, mildew, tearing and overall wear-and-tear. The unique finish provides exceptional water repellency while maintaining breathability for the health of the boat. Made in USA with a 7-year warranty. Colors: Admiral navy, black, cobalt blue, green, maroon, red, storm gray, teal, and yellow.
100% solution dyed marine acrylic, 9.25 ounce, is highly UV and mildew resistant. It also offers excellent resistance to fading and rot. Extremely water repellent, with excellent sun blockage. Endorsed by the American Cancer Society. Made in USA with a 7-year warranty. Colors: Natural, silver, cadet grey, black, Pacific blue, ocean blue, royal blue, marine blue, captain navy blue, aquamarine, Persian green, forest green, burgundy, jockey red, logo red, linen, and toast.
100% acrylic coated polyester, 6.5-ounce, is light weight and durable, breathable, water repellent, and mildew resistant. It is made in the USA with a 5-year limited warranty. Colors: Black, royal blue, linen, charcoal, burgundy, white, forest green, artic silver, sharkskin blue, and red. Sharkskin bimini covers are also available in striped colors; you choose the combination.
With a wide range of colors in each fabric choice, you’ll be able to find a style and color that combines to make the perfect bimini top cover for your boat from SavvyBoater.com.