Success usually comes to those who are too busy to be looking for it.Henry David Thoreau

How to Waterproof a Boat Cover?

How to Waterproof a Boat Cover?

If you own a boat, then you know that keeping it in good condition is essential for enjoying years of trouble-free use. One important aspect of boat maintenance is waterproofing the cover. A good cover that is waterproof will protect your boat from bad weather and keep its original color. In this blog post, we will provide a comprehensive guide on how to waterproof your boat cover like a pro!

Benefits Of Waterproofing A Boat Cover

It is no secret that boat covers play a pivotal role in protecting your vessel from the elements. Whether you are storing your boat outdoors or transporting it on the open road, a good cover will keep it clean and dry and help to extend its lifespan.

But what many boat owners don’t realize is that a cover can only do its job properly if it is waterproof. By waterproofing your boat cover, you can rest assured that your investment is well-protected. Moreover, this will also lead to better performance and a longer lifespan for the cover. [1]

Here are just some of the benefits of waterproofing your boat cover:

1. Increased protection from the elements

The main reason for waterproofing your boat cover is to provide increased protection from the elements. Whether you are dealing with snow, rain, or sun, a waterproof cover will keep your boat safe and dry.

2. Improved performance

By waterproofing your boat cover, you will also enhance its overall performance. A waterproofed cover will be more resistant to wind and will shed water more effectively. This means that it will do a better job of protecting your boat from the elements and will last longer before needing to be replaced.

Benefits Of Waterproofing A Boat Cover

3. Extended lifespan

Because waterproofing your boat cover will improve its performance and extend its lifespan, it is an excellent investment for any boat owner. By taking the time to waterproof your cover, you can save yourself money in the long run by avoiding having to replace it as often.

4. Greater peace of mind

Finally, waterproofing your boat cover will give you greater peace of mind knowing that your boat is well protected. When you know that your cover is doing its job properly, you can relax and enjoy your time on the water without worry.

Waterproofing your boat cover is an important part of owning a vessel. By taking the time to do it properly, you can enjoy all of the benefits that come with it. So don’t wait any longer, get started today!

When Should You Waterproof A Boat Cover?

Most boat covers are made from polyester or some other synthetic fabric. These materials are generally waterproof, but over time they can become less effective at repelling water. If you notice that your boat cover is starting to absorb water or letting water through, it’s time to waterproof it. 

It’s a good idea to waterproof your boat cover at least once a year, and more often if you live in an area with high humidity or lots of precipitation.

Steps To Make Your Boat Cover Waterproof

Step 1: Clean Your Boat Cover

The first step is to make sure that your boat cover is clean. Any dirt or debris on the surface of the cover will make it harder for the waterproofing treatment to bond properly. Use mild soap and a soft brush to scrub away any dirt, moss, or other contaminants from the surface of the cover.

Step 2: Apply Waterproofing Treatment

Once the cover is clean, you can apply a waterproofing treatment. There are several different products on the market that are designed specifically for this purpose. Follow the instructions on the product label carefully. In most cases, you will need to apply multiple coats in order to get optimal results.

Step 3: Allow the Cover to Dry Completely

After you have applied the waterproofing treatment, you need to allow the cover to dry completely. This usually takes 24 hours or more. Once the cover is dry, you can re-install it on your boat.

Step 4: Repeat as Necessary

Remember that you will need to reapply the waterproofing treatment on a regular basis in order to keep your boat covered in good condition. Depending on how often you use your boat and how exposed it is to the elements, you may need to treat it every few months or so. [2]

Use Wax To Waterproof Your Boat Cover

Because your boat cover is constantly exposed to the elements, it can become stained and fade over time. To help keep it looking its best, you can waterproof it with a coat of wax. This will also help to repel water and protect the fabric from mold and mildew.

Steps To Make Your Boat Cover Waterproof

To wax your boat cover, you will need:

  • A can of spray wax;
  • A clean cloth;
  • A ladder (if necessary);


  1. If your boat cover is very dirty, start by cleaning it with a hose and a brush. Be sure to rinse it thoroughly afterward;
  2. If you can reach your boat cover from the ground, you can skip this step. Otherwise, set up a ladder so that you can reach the top of the cover;
  3. Apply a generous amount of spray wax to the cover, working in sections;
  4.  Use a clean cloth to spread the wax evenly over the surface of the cover;
  5. Allow the wax to dry for about 30 minutes, then buff it to a shine with a clean cloth;

Repeat this process every few months to keep your boat cover looking its best. [3]

What Type Of Wax To Use?

There are a few different types of wax that you can use on your boat cover. Carnauba wax is a good option because it dries quickly and leaves a streak-free finish. However, it can be expensive. You can also use a polymer sealant, which will last longer than Carnauba wax but may be more difficult to apply.

How Long Will It Last?

At first, you might be worried about how long your boat cover will last if you waterproof it. However, if you take the proper precautions, your boat cover can last for years. Waterproofing your boat cover will protect it from UV rays, mold, mildew, and stains. In addition, waterproofing will extend the life of your boat cover and keep it looking new. [4]

Things to Avoid When Waterproofing Your Boat Cover

When it comes to waterproofing your boat cover, there are a few things you’ll want to avoid doing in order to ensure the best results. Here are four things to keep in mind:

  1. Don’t use an inferior quality sealant. Inferior quality sealants can actually end up damaging your boat cover, so it’s important to invest in a good quality sealant specifically designed for boat covers;
  2. Don’t forget to test the sealant on a small area of the cover first. This will help you determine if there are any compatibility issues before applying it to the entire cover;
  3. Don’t apply the sealant in direct sunlight. This can cause the sealant to dry too quickly and unevenly, which will reduce its effectiveness;
  4. Don’t neglect to reapply the sealant on a regular basis. Depending on the frequency of use, you’ll likely need to reapply the sealant every few months to keep your boat cover waterproof;

By following these simple tips, you can ensure that your boat cover remains waterproof for many years to come.

Potential Pitfalls of Not Waterproofing Your Boat Cover

If you don’t waterproof your boat cover, you risk damaging it in a number of ways. Water can seep through the fabric and cause mold and mildew to form, which can weaken and degrade the fabric over time. The cover can also become stained and discolored from water exposure, making it less attractive and more difficult to clean. In extreme cases, un-waterproofed boat covers can even tear or rip if they get too wet. [5] 

Things to Avoid When Waterproofing Your Boat Cover


How do you waterproof a cover?

One way to waterproof a boat cover is to use a sealant. This can be applied with a brush or roller, and will form a barrier against water. Another option is to use a waterproofing spray, which can be sprayed onto the cover and will dry to form a waterproof layer. Finally, you can also buy pre-made waterproof covers which are designed to fit your boat perfectly.

What are the benefits of waterproofing my boat cover?

Waterproofing your boat cover has several benefits. Firstly, it will protect your boat from the elements, including rain, snow, and ice. Secondly, it will help to keep your boat clean and free from dirt and debris. Thirdly, it will extend the life of your boat cover, as it will be less likely to become damaged by water. Finally, it will make your boat cover more comfortable to use, as it will be less likely to become wet and cold.

How often should I waterproof my boat cover?

It is generally recommended that you waterproof your boat cover at least once a year. However, if you live in an area with a lot of rainfall or snowfall, you may need to do this more often. If you notice any signs of wear or damage, such as cracks or holes, you should also waterproof your cover immediately to prevent further damage.

What are the best products to use for waterproofing my boat cover?

There are many different products on the market that can be used for waterproofing your boat cover. However, it is important to choose a product that is specifically designed for use on boat covers. This will ensure that it is durable and effective. Some of the best products to use include sealants, waterproofing sprays, and pre-made waterproof covers.

How do I apply a waterproofing product to my boat cover?

When applying a waterproofing product to your boat cover, it is important to follow the instructions on the label carefully. Make sure that you apply the product evenly and in accordance with the manufacturer’s instructions. If you are using a brush or roller, start from the middle of the cover and work outwards. If you are using a spray, hold the nozzle about 30cm away from the cover and apply in a steady, even motion.

How long does it take for a waterproofing product to dry?

The drying time for a waterproofing product will vary depending on the type of product you are using. However, most products will be dry within 24 hours. Once the product is dry, you should check that it is still effective by spraying some water onto the cover and checking that it beads up and rolls off. If not, you may need to reapply the product.

How do I stop my boat cover from collecting water?

One of the most common issues boat owners face is water pooling on their boat cover. Not only is this a pain to deal with, but it can also damage your cover and lead to mold and mildew growth. Waterproofing your boat cover is the best way to prevent this issue and extend the life of your cover.

What to avoid when waterproofing a boat cover?

One of the most common mistakes when waterproofing a boat cover is using products that are not meant for marine use. This includes regular household cleaners, which can damage the fabric and cause it to degrade over time. Using harsh chemicals can also break down the waterproofing treatment, making it less effective and leaving your boat vulnerable to water damage.

How to clean a boat cover before waterproofing?

It is important to ensure that your boat cover is clean before waterproofing it. This will help the waterproofing product to better adhere to the fabric and provide optimal protection.

To clean the boat cover, first remove any dirt, dust, or debris using a soft brush or cloth. Then, wash the cover using mild soap and cool water. Allow the cover to air dry completely before proceeding with the waterproofing process.

How to care for a waterproof boat cover?

One of the most important things you can do to prolong the life of your boat cover is to keep it clean. Clean it regularly with soap and water, and be sure to remove any mildew or mold as soon as you see it. You should also treat your cover with a waterproofing agent every few months to help keep it in good condition. If you live in an area with harsh winters, you’ll need to take extra care of your boat cover. Make sure to remove any snow or ice from the cover as soon as possible, and consider storing it indoors during the winter months. With proper care, your boat cover will last for many years.

How to care for a waterproof boat cover?

Can I cover my boat with a tarp?

You can, but it’s not the best idea. A tarp will protect your boat from the elements, but it won’t do a very good job of keeping water out. Water will eventually find its way under the tarp and could damage your boat.

Is it OK to leave the boat outside in winter?

It’s not ideal, but if you live in an area where the winters are mild, it should be fine. You’ll just need to make sure that your boat is well-protected from the elements.

Useful Video: How to Waterproof a Boat! | Leaking Boat Cover Fix, Star Brite Waterproofing


Now that you know how to waterproof your boat cover, you can keep your vessel protected from the elements and enjoy it for years to come. Just be sure to follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully and regularly inspect your cover for signs of wear and tear. With a little care and attention, your boat will be well-protected against the elements.

Thanks for reading!


  1. https://www.herculite.com/blog/pros-and-cons-of-fully-waterproof-boat-covers
  2. https://www.ultramarxl.com/en/blogs/blog/hoe-kan-ik-naden-van-bootkap-waterdicht-maken
  3. https://waterprooftips.com/how-to-waterproof-a-canvas-boat-cover/
  4. https://www.ultramarxl.com/en/frequently-asked-questions/boat-cover-maintenance/do-i-have-to-impregnate-the-inside-of-the-boat-cov/
  5. https://www.herculite.com/blog/five-common-misconceptions-about-boat-covers