What Size Fender Do You Need for Your Boat?

What Size Fender Do You Need for Your Boat?

Having fenders on your boat is an absolute must if you care about protecting it from damage, but not all fenders are made equal. Boat fenders come in many shapes and sizes for several reasons; knowing what kind of fenders you need is all about knowing what you plan on putting your boat through. A lot of the time, we use fenders to protect our boats from getting damaged as they sit near a dock, but they also provide protection from collisions with other boats. The question then remains: what size fender do you need for your boat? We’ll go through how you can determine your boat’s specific needs.

Fender Size vs. Boat Size

When you want to calculate the size of the fenders your boat will need, the important thing to understand is how they relate to the size of your boat. Larger boats move with more weight behind them, which means that a fender that’s too small won’t be able to adequately redirect that weight enough to prevent damage. However, you don’t want to get fenders that are too big for your boat because then you may run into a storage issue, even if you opt for inflatable fenders. Below are two common fender types and the sizes you might want to consider.

Ball Fenders

The shape of ball fenders makes them more difficult to crush under pressure from an impact. This quality makes them ideal for larger boats, as they can deal with the larger amounts of force driving behind them and creating the impact. One rule of thumb you can use to find the right sized ball fenders is to have two inches worth of diameter in your ball fender for every five feet of your boat’s length. Ball fenders are also great for boats with more pronounced bow flares since the round shape fills the area below the rub rail while still providing protection. The shape also helps prevent the fender from walking up the hull and over the rub railing, which can be useful in certain docking situations.

Cylinder Fenders

Cylinder fenders are the more traditional option, and they still work perfectly well for what they need to do. You also have the option to hang these fenders vertically or horizontally. Hanging them vertically is a better option for pulling up to other vessels, while hanging them horizontally is usually more common for pulling your boat into a dock. Another useful rule of thumb for cylinder fender size is to have about one inch of diameter to every four or five feet of your boat’s length. However, the larger your fenders are, the more protection they will offer. If you have the space on your boat, it won’t hurt to have larger fenders.

We want your boat to be safe as possible while on the water. For boat fenders and boat fender covers for sale, Innovative Marine Group has everything you need to fully equip yourself for your next boat outing.

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