Preserving Your Boat: Protecting Against Sun Damage and Bird Droppings

Owning a boat is not just a hobby; it's an investment in leisure, adventure, and sometimes even a way of life. However, this investment can quickly deteriorate if proper care isn't taken to protect it from the elements, particularly the sun and the unwelcome consequences of bird droppings. While the sun may seem like a friend, its UV rays can wreak havoc on a boat's exterior, and bird droppings, besides being unsightly, can cause corrosive damage to the gelcoat. The cost of repairing these damages can be substantial, not to mention the longer-term value lost if maintenance is neglected. Fortunately, there are cost-effective solutions available to mitigate these risks, such as the use of side curtains on lifts.

The Sun's Silent Menace

The sun's rays can be both a source of joy and a silent menace for boat owners. While basking in its warmth on the open water is part of the allure of boating, prolonged exposure to UV radiation can have detrimental effects on a boat's exterior. The gelcoat, the protective outer layer of fiberglass boats, is particularly vulnerable. UV exposure can cause it to fade, crack, or chalk, leading to costly repairs. Furthermore, extended exposure to sunlight can also degrade other materials on the boat, such as vinyl seats and rubber seals, further compounding maintenance costs.

The Perils of Bird Droppings

While bird droppings may seem harmless at first glance, they pose a significant threat to the integrity of a boat's surface. Bird droppings contain uric acid, which can be highly corrosive, especially when left to bake in the sun. If not promptly removed, these droppings can eat away at the gelcoat, leaving behind unsightly stains and potentially causing lasting damage. Moreover, the acidic nature of bird droppings can also tarnish metal fittings and fixtures on the boat, leading to additional maintenance expenses.

The High Cost of Repairs

Repairing the damage caused by sun exposure and bird droppings can quickly add up in terms of both time and money. Restoring the gelcoat alone can be a labor-intensive process, involving sanding, polishing, and applying new layers of protective coating. In severe cases, where the damage extends beyond the gelcoat, fiberglass repairs may be necessary, further driving up costs. Not only does this result in a significant financial burden for boat owners, but it also detracts from the overall value of the vessel.

Protecting Your Investment

Given the substantial costs associated with repairing sun and bird damage, proactive measures to protect your boat are essential. One cost-effective solution is the use of side curtains on lifts. Side curtains provide an additional layer of protection against the elements, shielding the boat from direct sunlight and preventing bird droppings from landing on its surface. By investing in side curtains, boat owners can significantly reduce the risk of sun damage and minimize the need for costly repairs, ultimately preserving the value of their investment.


While exposure to the sun and bird droppings may seem like minor inconveniences, the damage they can cause to boats should not be underestimated. From fading gelcoat to corrosive stains, neglecting to protect your boat from these elements can lead to significant repair expenses and diminished long-term value. By taking proactive measures, such as installing side curtains on lifts, boat owners can safeguard their investment and enjoy many more years of smooth sailing on the open water. After all, a little prevention today can save a lot of headaches tomorrow.