“How should I store my kayak in my apartment?”
Sure enough, if you have the space, you should keep your kayak indoors. And without a garage, a garden shed, or designated storage space, your living quarters will have to do.
Kayaks are big and bulky, so storing them is not always easy. Nevertheless, choosing a suitable storage place is crucial to keep your kayak in good condition.
Properly stored, your kayak remains undamaged and is always ready for subsequent use.
So, let’s look at what you need to consider when storing a kayak in your apartment.
5 Ways to Store a Kayak in Your Apartment
A suitable storage location offers protection from UV radiation, humidity, thieves, and extreme temperature. For this reason, indoor storage is the best option.
For inflatable kayaks and folding boats, storage is relatively uncomplicated. The boats can be rolled up or folded and stored in a dry and cool place protected from sunlight.
This is somewhat more complicated with classic fixed kayaks due to the size and weight.
Here are five different ways of storing your kayak inside your apartment:
1. Strap Systems
You can attach your kayak to the ceiling or walls with a strap system. This type of storage is practical as it is particularly space-saving.
The best wall and ceiling mounts for kayaks have wide straps around the entire boat.
Under no circumstances should kayaks be hung only by the carrying handles. The handles are not suitable for this purpose and could give way. Concentrating the load on a few points could also lead to deformation.
2. Wall Brackets
This method supports the kayak on a pair of mounting brackets attached to the wall.
This is a shelf that consists of two large brackets that you attach to the wall. For less than $100, you can already get tiltable storage brackets. They hold the kayak securely, and you can fold them down when not in use.
When attaching the kayak to the wall bracket, hang it horizontally with the cockpit facing out and the bottom flat against the wall. Make sure you balance it well so that it does not slip out of the mount at some point.
3. Floor Rack
You can buy a kayak rack, or you build one yourself. You place this storage rack on the ground and park the kayak on it on one level.
However, you should ensure that the top, bottom, and sides of the kayak are protected from shocks, impact, sunlight, and hot air (e.g., near a radiator).
Some kayak stands allow vertical storage. In this case, you place the nose in the stand and lean the kayak against the wall at a slight angle so that the cockpit faces outwards. We only recommend this method for rooms with high ceilings.
4. Storage Room
If your home has a pantry or attic that you could clear out, you can store your kayak there instead. Because of the smaller dimensions of the storage space, you may not need to attach unique mounts.
In most cases, it should be sufficient to lean the kayak securely against a wall or prop it stably in a corner. If possible, try to secure it slightly with a strap attached to an adjacent piece of furniture.
This makeshift solution costs nothing and works well, provided you have sufficient clean and well-ventilated rooms in your house that do not heat up too much.
In any case, don’t forget to put a soft cushion or a box of clothes on the floor where the kayak’s bow will lie so that it does not make contact with the hard ground.
5. Integrate It Into Your Furniture
Chandler, from the popular series Friends, once bought a race car bed and used it to sit on while playing video games. Why not try the same and use your kayak as an eccentric piece of furniture?
Be creative! Put your kayak in front of your TV or next to the window. The latter will provide you with lots of natural light — a reading seat, anyone? Your guests will notice it anyway, so they might as well try climbing into the seating hatch (or sit on top).
Just make sure it doesn’t come into contact with other furniture, sharp objects, shoes, or the like, or it could get scratches or dents.
Since a kayak is meant for the water and not the ground, you should place it on a soft surface (e.g., a beanbag) to prevent the bottom from caving in and getting flattened or even cracked.
How Not To Store a Kayak In Your Apartment
Do not hang the kayak from the grab handles.
Try not to hang it from the ceiling if there is another option. Even if you secure it well, this method puts a lot of stress on the kayak — an exception to this rule is a purpose-built ceiling kayak rack like this one.
Do not mount your kayak on a storage device from which you cannot easily lift it in or out of – otherwise, you risk dropping it and damaging it in the process.
Also, do not place your kayak directly next to a heater or on the balcony where you park your bike. Extreme temperatures and weather conditions will damage the materials of your kayak, especially heat and sunlight.
Avoid storing your kayak flat on hard ground for long periods. This will dent or deform the shell.
Avoid pressure points. Don’t tighten the straps as much as you would when transporting the kayak on the roof rack of a car. Constant intense pressure could also lead to deformation.
Even if it doesn’t seem so important at first glance, it’s essential to clean your kayak thoroughly before storing it. This will help you avoid dirt build-up, crusts, and stains.
Use a gentle all-purpose cleaner (e.g., diluted laundry soap) and a sponge to wipe down your kayak. After washing with soap, rinse the kayak thoroughly with water so that no soap residue remains on the kayak. Make sure you clean it inside and out — there should be no dirt or other residue present.
Cover your kayak. Whether you store your kayak indoors or outdoors, it is advisable to use some cover. This will protect your kayak from dust, sunlight, moisture, and odors. Kayaks are not meant to be wet all the time, even if they were built for use in the water. So they must be stored completely dry.
Tip: If you want to store your kayak for a longer period of time and have limited space, you can also have it professionally stored. Many kayak schools, kayak rentals, moorings or rowing clubs, and beaches offer storage places.
Can A Kayak Be Stored On Its Side?
The side of the kayak is one of the sturdier parts, so it won’t just buckle.
If you store the kayak on your apartment floor, you can place it horizontally (on its side). To protect it and keep it in place, put some padding underneath. You could put some towels or padding in a box and put the end of the kayak in that box.
Tilt the kayak so that it’s horizontal and lean it against a wall with the cockpit facing out. It should lie on its side and not flat. This way, it’ll lean against a wall at an angle.
Still, depending on what your kayak is made of (plastic dents quickly, for example), it could start to get dented. Turn it on its other side once a month to avoid this.
Kayaks are large and unwieldy items that blend in with the house interior. Nevertheless, an apartment offers the best possible protection from moisture and extreme temperatures. Kayak wall and ceiling brackets make storage as space-saving as possible.
An apartment offers the best possible protection from moisture and extreme temperatures.
Of course, you first have to get your kayak inside, which can be quite a challenge. Moving a 3 to 5-meter-long watercraft in narrow stairwells requires almost mathematical skills. It isn’t very likely that your kayak will fit into the lift in your building if you have one.
Another option is to transport it over the balcony, for which you will ideally need a pulley. The kayak is not extremely heavy, but its shape and size make it difficult to handle in the air.
Once the kayak is in your home, try to make the most of it and enjoy it as part of your decoration. It reminds you of adventurous times and makes you want to go on your next trip!