Hiring a professional for boat shrink wrapping can be a difficult decision for boat owners. While some prefer to do it themselves to save money, others believe that hiring a professional is worth the cost. In this article, we will discuss the pros and cons of hiring a professional for your boat shrink wrap to help you make an informed decision.
Understanding Boat Shrink Wrapping
Boat shrink wrapping is a process of covering a boat with a plastic wrap to protect it from harsh weather conditions during storage. Shrink wrap is made of polyethylene, which has UV inhibitors and is formulated to shrink when heated to create a tight seal. This seal prevents weather elements from entering the boat and also prevents the stretching and tearing of tarps commonly seen after a few months in the elements.
The process of shrink wrapping a boat involves covering the entire boat with a plastic wrap and then heating the wrap with a propane torch or heat gun. The heat causes the plastic to shrink, creating a tight seal around the boat. The process requires skill and experience, and it is recommended to hire a professional to ensure a proper installation.
The shrink wrap can be set at a high angle to prevent ice and snow from accumulating on the boat during storage. The slipperiness of the plastic also helps to prevent the buildup of snow and puddles, which are hazards of tarp and canvas covers. Shrink wrapping a boat provides an airtight seal, which also helps to prevent mold and mildew from forming inside the boat.
However, shrink wrapping a boat comes with its own set of pros and cons. The following table summarizes the pros and cons of shrink wrapping a boat:
|Provides a tight seal against weather elements||Can be expensive to hire a professional|
|Prevents stretching and tearing of tarps||Not environmentally friendly|
|Prevents ice and snow buildup||Can trap moisture inside the boat|
|Provides an airtight seal against mold and mildew||Can be difficult to remove|
The Cost of Hiring a Professional Boat Shrink Wrapper
When it comes to boat shrink wrapping, many boat owners wonder if it’s worth it to hire a professional or if they should attempt to do it themselves. While DIY shrink wrapping may seem like a cost-effective option, it’s important to consider the pros and cons of hiring a professional. One of the biggest factors to consider is the cost.
The cost of hiring a professional boat shrink wrapper can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the boat, the type of boat, and the location. On average, boat shrink wrap cost per foot will be around $8 to $25. The type of boat you have will also affect prices, with an increase of up to $3 per foot if you leave the mast raised on a sailboat.
For example, a 30-foot sailboat with a raised mast may cost around $300 to $450 to shrink wrap by a professional. However, a 20-foot powerboat may only cost around $160 to $200. It’s important to get a quote from a professional before deciding whether to hire them.
While the initial cost of hiring a professional boat shrink wrapper may be higher than doing it yourself, it’s important to consider the maintenance costs. A professional will know how to properly install and secure the shrink wrap, which can help prevent damage to the boat during transportation or storage. Poorly installed shrink wrap can lead to tears or holes, which can result in costly repairs.
In addition to the initial and maintenance costs, there may be hidden costs to consider when hiring a professional boat shrink wrapper. For example, some professionals may charge extra for additional materials or labor if the boat has an unusual shape or requires additional supports. It’s important to discuss any potential additional costs with the professional before hiring them.
Pros of Hiring a Professional
When it comes to shrink wrapping a boat, there are several benefits to hiring a professional to do the job. Here are some of the advantages to consider:
One of the biggest advantages of hiring a professional to shrink wrap your boat is the quality assurance. A professional shrink wrap service has the expertise and experience to ensure that the job is done correctly. They know how to properly measure and cut the shrink wrap material, how to seal it tightly, and how to secure it to the boat. This means that the boat will be protected from the elements and will be less likely to suffer any damage during the winter months.
Another advantage of hiring a professional is the time-saving factor. Shrink wrapping a boat can be a time-consuming process, especially if you don’t have experience doing it. A professional shrink wrap service can complete the job quickly and efficiently, which means that you can spend more time enjoying your boat and less time worrying about winterizing it.
Shrink wrapping a boat can be a dangerous task, especially if you don’t have the right equipment or experience. A professional shrink wrap service has the necessary safety equipment and training to ensure that the job is done safely. This means that you can avoid any potential accidents or injuries that could occur during the process.
Cons of Hiring a Professional
When it comes to shrink wrapping a boat, hiring a professional may seem like the easiest and most convenient option, but there are several cons to consider before making the decision.
One of the most significant drawbacks of hiring a professional to shrink wrap your boat is the cost. Professional services can be expensive, and the price may vary depending on the size of your boat, the type of shrink wrap used, and the location of the service provider. Additionally, some professionals may charge extra fees for additional services, such as dehumidifiers or vents.
Another disadvantage of hiring a professional is the availability issue. Not all areas have professional shrink wrapping services available, and if they do, they may be fully booked during peak seasons. This can lead to delays in getting your boat shrink wrapped, which can be problematic if you need to store your boat for the winter or transport it to a different location.
DIY Boat Shrink Wrapping: An Alternative
For boat owners who are looking to save money, DIY shrink wrapping can be a viable option. However, it is important to note that shrink wrapping a boat requires a certain level of skill and knowledge to ensure that it is done correctly.
To begin with, boat owners need to purchase the right materials, including shrink wrap, propane heat gun, adhesive spray, protective gloves, shrink wrap knife, strapping tape, vents, vertical supports, and a zipper door. The cost of these materials can add up, but it is still generally less expensive than hiring a professional.
Once the materials are obtained, boat owners need to carefully wrap their boat, ensuring that the shrink wrap is tight enough to seal and protect the boat from the elements. This can be a time-consuming process, and it is important to take the time to do it right to avoid any potential damage to the boat.
One of the biggest advantages of DIY shrink wrapping is the cost savings. Boat owners can save hundreds of dollars by doing the job themselves, which can be especially appealing for those who are on a tight budget. Additionally, DIY shrink wrapping allows boat owners to have more control over the process and to customize the wrap to their specific needs.
However, there are also some potential downsides to consider. First and foremost, DIY shrink wrapping requires a significant amount of time and effort, which may not be feasible for all boat owners. Additionally, if the job is not done correctly, it can lead to damage to the boat or ineffective protection from the elements.
In conclusion, there are both pros and cons to consider when deciding whether or not to hire a professional for your boat shrink wrap.