Now that you’ve invested in a boat cover to protect your boat, it’s time to learn how to make that investment last for years to come. One key component to extending the life of your boat cover is a support pole. A support pole works by creating a “tent effect” that allows water, leaves, and other debris to slide off the cover (think of it as the roof on your house). Without it, water and debris can collect and form pockets which will eventually leave the cover distorted and more susceptible to mold and mildew.
This occurrence is especially common for semi-custom or styled-to-fit boat covers. While this type of cover is a great option for the value-minded consumer, it does not provide the same glove-like fit as a custom boat cover. Therefore, there may be extra fabric that is more likely to form pockets from rainfall, snow, fallen leaves, or any other debris. Installing a support pole and pulling the fabric tight is a essential to preventing this occurrence.
A standard boat cover support pole is made from an adjustable aluminum pole that fits between the deck and the underside of the boat cover. Most support poles have rubber caps on both ends of the pole that provide extra friction to hold up the pole by tension. Other styles have a male snap on one end that connects to a female snap on the boat cover. All of Carver’s custom boat covers and pontoon boat covers have a snap or several snaps (depending on the length of the boat) placed near the center of the cover.
This is just one of the many support systems available. Some boat cover support systems are better suited than others, depending on what type of boat you have. Next week we’ll feature an article on the advantages/disadvantages of each type so you can choose the best option for your boat cover.