Man power washing the bow of the boat.

The Bow of the Boat is Vulnerable: Here’s How to Protect It

Boating an exciting pastime, and it can provide hours of fun for the entire family. Whether you love fishing, feeling the bow of the boat cut through the water as you’re speeding across the lake, or just relaxing on your boat, there’s always something enjoyable to do anytime there is nice weather. Owning a boat gives you the option to ski or explore fabulous clear water lakes in Missouri or simply drop anchor and allow the waves to rock you to sleep while you soak away in the sun. But with all the fun comes important responsibilities. That’s why it’s necessary to talk about protecting the front of the boat.

If you’re unfamiliar with boating language, the boat’s bow refers to the front of the boat. We want to discuss it because you need to ensure your boat is always in good working condition so you can maximize its use. So, boat owners must be aware that once it’s tied up at the dock, the bow (or the front side) is the most vulnerable part of the boat.

This is especially worth being aware of when your craft is tied in a slip at your favorite marina or restaurant on the lake. Strong currents, high winds, and even poorly maintained docks can cause damage to the bow of your boat. When the front of the boat bumps or rubs against the dock it can get scratched or, even worse, receive structural damage, especially during times of rough water. And some lakes, like Missouri’s Lake of the Ozarks, can be quite rough. Whether it’s from winds or the high traffic and wakes from large boats, you need to take care to protect the bow of your boat.

Depending on the size and type of your vessel, there are several ways to protect the bow of the boat. Here are some of the more popular ways to make sure the front of the boat is guarded against damage and expensive repairs.

The front of the boat is also call "the bow." This is the front of a sailboat on the water.
Sail Croatia Logo, Bow of the Boat - Author Alex Proimos from Sydney, Australia

Using Boat Lifts

Extreme weather conditions of all types can wreak havoc on watercraft, and in many of these scenarios, the boat’s bow is vulnerable. Ice drifts or powerful storm wave surges can shove your boat around. 

Even a large boat driven by an inconsiderate boater who doesn’t show common courtesy or observe no-wake rules can seriously rock docked boats, straining their tie-downs. And if boats break loose and run adrift, they are at extreme risk. Unfortunately, we’ve seen boats adrift many times on our lake.

The best way to cope with rough waters or challenging weather is to use a boat lift. It will allow you to lift your boat above the water surface and prevent it from banging against the dock when the waves are high. 

Boat lifts are one of the best solutions to ensure that the front of your boat remains protected during extreme weather or choppy lake conditions. Plus, you have the added benefit of the ease of getting your boat in and out of the water at the push of a button.

Installing BowShield Bow Guards to the Front of the Boat Offers More Protection

Many boat owners choose to install BowShields on the bow since it can be so easily scratched, scuffed and damaged. Made of durable and strong stainless-steel material, BowShields are installed on the bow to protect it from abrasion and scuffs.

They come with easy-to-apply strong adhesive and can prevent costly repairs allowing you to maintain the value of your boat. But make sure you install them properly to avoid any damage while applying or removing them and thus devalue your boat.

Applying Bumpers

Another popular product on the market that you can use to protect the bow of the boat is a dock bumper. You can find different kinds of bumpers such as large gas dock bumpers, large corner bumpers, or specialty bumpers to provide protection to your boat while it is tied at the dock.

Most of these products are durable and weather-resistant, allowing you to protect the front of the boat (and its sides) for many years to come.

While dock bumpers can help protect the bow of the boat, bumpers can also help protect its sides.

Minimize Damage, Maximize Enjoyment

Your boat is probably one of your larger investments, and it is crucial to maintain it properly. So, taking steps to minimize damage to the bow of the boat will go a long way in maintaining your boat and enjoying it for many years. 

For more information on installing a boat lift at Lake of the Ozarks, Table Rock Lake, Pomme de Terre Lake, or most of the other boating lakes in Missouri, call the friendly experts at LOTO Lift!

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