I have a Load Rite pontoon trailer, which was bought new for my 20-foot Premier pontoon boat. I’m just reading in my boat manual that I should not store my boat on a carpeted bunk. My trailer does have carpeted bunks. This will be the first winter I keep it in my driveway on the trailer. Will this present a problem with my tubes? If so, is there something else I could cover the bunks with? I told the dealer where I purchased the trailer that I was using the trailer only for storage over the winter, and he said nothing about this presenting a problem. I keep the boat in the water all summer. Any advice or input would be appreciated.
– Peg Leonardi, via BoatingWorld.com
This is (or isn’t) a problem, depending on who you ask. My experience is that carpeted bunks can cause corrosion due to trapped moisture, but just how much will vary due to factors such as the type of carpet installed, where the boat is used (salt water vs. fresh) and construction of the boat itself. A simple solution to prevent possible hull pitting caused by trapped moisture is to replace your carpet with plastic bunk covers or slides, such as those available at gatorbak.com/ or surfixinc.com/.
A word of caution if you do make the switch. Plastic bunks are mucho slippery — way more so than carpet. This slipperiness makes launching easier, but there’s also a learning curve associated with it. One suggestion is to not unhook your boat before backing down the ramp, as the boat may well slide off before you reach the water.