If you recently invested in an inflatable paddleboard, you have many adventures ahead of you. Your paddleboard might take you down the coast of a tropical ocean, across a secluded mountain lake, or up the banks of a winding river.
Wherever you decide to take your paddleboard, it’s important to take some of the following steps to make sure you don’t damage your new purchase. If you purchased a SurfStar board, you can be assured of the most durable construction—designed by experts with years of experience in water sports. However, no matter what board you have, no board is indestructible. The following tips will help keep your board in pristine condition and reduce the possibility of damage.
- Proper Storage and Transport
Proper storage and transport are two of the easiest ways to take care of your paddleboard. Since inflatable paddleboards fold up, make sure you have an adequate storage bag. Always make sure your bag is free from any sharp or pointed objects. Things like pencils, pens, multitools, etc. can potentially puncture your board as you put it back in the bag.
A quick check of your bag will make sure you don’t have a surprise leak in your board next time you use it. Sometimes if you place the bag on the ground at the shore of a body of water, it can get sticks or debris in it without you knowing, so an extra check never hurts.
Additionally, when your board is not in use, make sure to store it somewhere free from anything that might puncture the board. Inflatable paddleboards pack up small and are much easier to store than hardtop or foam boards, but they should still have a dedicated space for storage.
Preferably have a place off the floor to store them to ensure your board is damage-free and ready to go whenever you are. Another thing to keep in mind is a storage area out of direct sunlight since long exposure to UV rays is harsh on any board.
- Be Aware Where You Launch
Getting onto your board is one of the most exciting parts of paddleboarding. Paddlers get to step off the land and onto the water where they can explore, enjoy, and find peace in nature.
Going from land to water or water to land is one of the most common times riders damage their boards. Sometimes paddleboarders get on too soon and the board or fin scrapes the bottom. Sometimes there are sharp objects that can weaken or puncture your board where you decide to launch from.
To avoid damage to your board when mounting or dismounting, try to find a smooth, sandy place to launch your board. Don’t get on the board too soon or get off too late. Always check that your fin isn’t too close to the ground when you get on the board.
- Watch out for Waves
Sometimes paddleboarders are caught off guard by a wave. This is most dangerous when you’re close to the shore in the ocean. A wave can knock your board into the shore and cause damage. Sometimes if a board gets washed too close to shore, the fin gets caught in the sand or mud. This can lead to bent or snapped fins. If you feel your fin dragging on the bottom, the best thing to do is safely dismount and gently free the fin from the bottom.
Also, look out for other paddlers around you. If a rogue wave crashes near you, it might knock riders off their boards, which could cause them to hit your board and cut it. It’s safest to give everyone enough room for error no matter where you paddle.
- Look out for the Bottom
One of the best things about paddleboarding is taking in the beauty of your waterfront of choice. As you paddle, especially close to shore, stay aware of the bottom. Sometimes a rock looks like it’s far below the surface, but it’s just a few inches under the water.
Try not to be right next to shore in shallow water. If you are close to shore, it’s wise to take it slow to avoid anything that might scrape your board or fin.
- Placing Boards on Shore
Sometimes when you paddleboard, it’s fun to take a break and place your board on the shore while you have a snack, relax on the beach, or go for a swim. When deciding where to put your board on shore, pick a place preferably out of the water that is soft and free of any sharp objects. Try not to push the fin into the bottom as the current of the water will move the board while the fin is rigid in the bottom. This can quickly lead to bent or broken fins.
In addition, try to find a shaded place to put your board so the sun doesn’t cause any damage or premature wear. Also, try not to lay or sit on your board while it’s onshore as it could wedge something sharp into your board.
- Rinse and Dry Your Board
After you’re done enjoying your paddleboard, it’s always best to rinse and dry it before storing it. This is especially important in saltwater because if the salt stays on the board and can eat away at the outer layer.
Drying your board will ensure no mold or mildew grows as it’s stored. If you don’t have a way to wipe your board dry, one option is to leave it inflated until it air dries and then deflate and store the board. Taking just a little extra time to rinse and dry your board can prolong the life of your paddleboard.
Protecting Your Investment
By following the few simple steps above paddlers can protect their paddleboard from damage. Your new board can take you to exciting places and offer exercise, fun, and happiness, so watching out for things that might damage your board will ensure none of your paddle adventures are cut short by board damage.