Ridetheducks.com is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

The Best Dock Bumpers for 2020

best dock bumpers

Docks are a significant investment, so it is only natural for you to do everything you can to protect it and maintain its pristine condition. On that note, investing in the best dock bumpers is a no brainer.

However, with plenty of options in the market, finding the best one that fits your needs might be quite challenging. If this is your case, then there is no need to worry.

In this article, I have rounded up a list of top-rated dock bumpers to give you an idea of which one is the best. I have also included a comprehensive buyer’s guide section to precisely know whether you are buying the right dock bumpers for you

Best Dock Bumper Reviews

1. Hull Hugr HH-A60 Marina Bumpers

hull hugr hh-a60 marina bumpers

Our first entry on this list of the best dock bumpers and fenders is a lightweight product from Hull Hugr. This useful tool is made of a proven and tested material that’s meant for marine use. It can be installed easily using common tools. Also, its dimensions are ideal to offer good coverage for your dock, providing it and your boat with enough protection.

The bumper is made of durable marine-grade vinyl. It’s resistant to UV rays which means it won’t fade over time despite too much exposure to sunlight. It’s also resistant to tearing, so it’ll remain as cool-looking for a long time.

Beneath the vinyl is a dense, closed-cell foam. Together, these materials make the product thick enough to absorb a good amount of shock and withstand constant impact from boats. Also, the product’s dimensions are enough to cover a good portion of your dock for that all-around protection.

The features and benefits of this bumper are excellent for newbies who are still learning how to dock properly. This can give their boat and the dock enough protection until they can master docking and undocking maneuvers. Upon purchase, it will come with stainless steel grommets that are spaced evenly across it so you can secure it properly on your dock. It’s reasonably priced and gives plenty of value for your money.

The only downside of this product is the small screws that come with it. They can’t be used so I had to buy my own. However, this inconvenience pales in comparison to this product’s quality.

What We Like
  • Provides ample protection
  • Resistant to UV light and tearing
  • Provides good coverage to the dock
What We Don’t Like
  • Small screws

Overall, I highly recommend this product. It lasts long and is high-performing, making it a decent bargain that you can buy.

2. Taylor Made 46013 Comm Dock Side Guards

taylor made 46013 comm dock side guards

The second entry is the first of the 3 Taylor made dock bumpers on this list. What I love about this product is that it’s made of recycled, double-molded PVC that’s very easy to cut and secure to the dock. Despite the PVC not being newly manufactured, its quality is not compromised.

A double-molded PVC is very durable; much like a thick vinyl. It’s great for protecting a decent-sized boat from damaging itself when hitting the docks. It’s heavy-duty and can absorb shock from a strong impact. It also works perfectly in the designated dock for my pontoon boat, so I’d say it’s one of the best dock bumpers for pontoon boats in the market.

This product’s height and width are enough to fully cover the edge of a regular dock. It’s not as thick as the other products, but its high-quality material more than makes up for it.

This product is made to be long, but you can easily cut it into smaller portions. Depending on your needs, you can use this to line your dock and its pilings as vertical dock bumpers. Either way, this product can protect your boat when rough waters bang it repeatedly to the dock.

If you have a bigger boat and there are rough waters in your area, this bumper may not be enough to protect it. Also, its white coating can rub off on your boat (which is not uncommon), but the material itself is not easily damaged.

What We Like
  • Durable
  • Easy to cut and install
  • Versatile
  • Provides good coverage
What We Don’t Like
  • May not be enough for bigger boats
  • White coating rubs off

The inconvenience that this product has is pretty minor. It’s still a perfect choice in protecting small- and medium-sized boats. The coating rubbing off is negligible given this product’s quality.

3. Attwood 93532-1 Softside Marine Dock Fenders

attwood 93532-1 softside marine dock fenders

Our next entry is a versatile product that’s resistant to UV light. It’s also lightweight, soft, and durable so you can install it easily and use it for a long time.

This Attwood product can be used as both a fender and a bumper. Its design and construction make it a perfect fender for your boat so you don’t have to worry when mooring into new, bumper-free docks. It can also give you peace of mind when you ride alongside other boats. In other words, this will ensure damage-free boating wherever your destination is.

This product is also perfect as boat bumpers for docks. You can secure this to your dock to keep it from being damaged. Also, it’s very thick so it can lay your boat away from the rough edges of the dock, preventing it from getting scratched. Regardless of how you use this product, it will withstand the scorching heat of the sun due to its UV-resistant nature.

What I like about this product is how deep the screws can go. Since it’s so thick, the head of the screws can burrow past its surface. It’s a very clever feature because it lessens the risk of the screws scratching your hull while your boat is docked.

The downside is that I noticed how easily the cleat of my boat scratched its outer coating off. Also, this lightweight product may not be enough to withstand a strong impact from a larger boat.

What We Like
  • Versatile (can be used as a fender and a bumper)
  • UV-resistant
  • Deep holes to prevent fasteners from scratching the boat
What We Don’t Like
  • Too lightweight for larger boats
  • The outer coating can be easily scratched off

All in all, I’d say this product is a great choice as a fender and bumper when you’re using smaller boats. It’s potentially the best dockmate dock bumper fender in the market.

4. Dimex EasyFlex Plastic P-Profile Dock Edging

dimex easyflex plastic p-profile dock edging

Our 4th entry is one of the most preferred dock edge bumpers on this list. This product is flexible which makes it easy to install. Its P-design makes it a perfect bumper to protect both boats and docks. Also, its interior is designed to withstand heavy impacts from larger boats.

The EasyFlex edging is made of recycled PVC material which I love because it’s extremely durable, allowing you to enjoy its benefits for a long time. It’s also flexible which means you can bend it over the dock’s corners. I love this feature because it saves me money from buying corner bumpers.

This product resembles the letter “P” with its flat sides and a protruding center. The protrusion perfectly envelopes the edges of the dock and the flat sides allow for easy fastening. The design secures this edging in place, providing protection to both your boat and the dock.

The interior has 2 cavities with a rib in the middle. This design gives extra strength to the product, preventing it from collapsing under immense pressure from bigger vessels. Also, unlike the previous products, this one doesn’t have an outer coating that can rub off on your boat.

I’ve noticed two inconveniences for this product. First, it doesn’t uncoil easily even if you expose it to sunlight, so you have to be patient with it. Second, the manufacturer’s recommended screws are sold separately.

What We Like
  • Can withstand pressure from larger boats
  • Designed to perfectly fit dock edges
  • No outer coating to rub off on boats
  • Can be bent to cover corners
What We Don’t Like
  • The screws are sold separately
  • Doesn’t uncoil easily

All in all, I’d say that this product is still one of my top choices on this list because of its strength and flexibility.

5. Dock Edge Dock-Side Bumpers

dock edge dock-side bumpers

Our next product is another one of the dock edge bumpers on this review. I personally love this one not only because of its design but also due to its quality. It’s strong enough to stay unbreakable against heavy vessels, and its design makes it an excellent protection for gunnels.

The Dock Edge bumper is made of marine-grade vinyl which means it’s durable and can withstand constant exposure to saltwater and freshwater. It’s also resistant to mold and mildew. These qualities allow it to retain its look, strength, and quality longer.

The product’s PVC material creates a strong wall with hollow, air-filled interiors. This allows the product to bear heavy pressure and constant bumping. Therefore, it’s ideal for docks with high traffic or large water vessels.

The feature that I find very helpful is its angled ends. When hit, these angles will deflect boats, keeping it away from the rough docks. This will cause it to form inside corners when placed side by side.

Another helpful feature of this product is its shape. One of its sides is designed to reach over the edge of the dock, protecting your gunnels. When your boat is docked and the water is rough, its movement will cause your boat to go up and down. With this bumper, your gunnels will be safe from damage from hitting the dock.

What I didn’t like about this product is the inconsistency of its quality. I got a great product, but the one my brother bought cracked within the first couple of weeks.

What We Like
  • Durable
  • Resistant to mold and mildew (marine-grade)
  • Angled ends that deflect boats
  • Offers excellent gunnel protection
What We Don’t Like
  • Inconsistent quality

Overall, I’d repeatedly recommend this product due to its ability to offer gunnel protection as well as its durability and resistance to mold.

6. Taylor Made Vinyl Dock Corner Bumpers

taylor made vinyl dock corner bumpers

This Taylor Made product is the perfect bumper for 90-degree corners. Its structure follows the P-profile so it fits perfectly on edges. Its interiors are built to remain strong under pressure. Additionally, it’s made of high-quality and heavy-duty PVC material.

This product is great to be used together with a P-shaped edging. It’s also built with flat sides for convenient fastening and a soft and bulky center to protect both your boat and the dock. This product can be easily fastened to the dock using screws. There’s an instruction that’s quite simple to understand and follow.

The interiors of this Taylor Made Corner Bumper is designed to withstand strong and frequent impact from large water vessels. The cavity inside is enforced by a rib that prevents it from collapsing when hit, making it resistant to impact.

Meanwhile, the width is enough to give full coverage to a standard-sized dock. It’s also thick enough to keep your boat at a safe distance, even when the water keeps it unsteady despite being securely moored.

One inconvenience is the size of this product: it’s too small. It only spans a few inches on either side, so in rough waters, it doesn’t cover enough area to deflect the boat. It may be useful for slips but not for wide docks.

What We Like
  • Made of durable material
  • Designed to withstand strong and frequent impacts from larger boats
  • Designed to be easily fastened
  • Keeps boats safe enough in slips
What We Don’t Like
  • Too small; not useful enough in wide docks

When used to protect boats berthed in slips, this product works perfectly so it’s very commendable for me. If you happen to have a huge vessel, this product will prove helpful if you use a P-shaped edging with it.

7. Extreme Max BoatTector Dock Bumpers

extreme max boattector dock bumpers

The Extreme Max BoatTector Dock Bumper is both durable and convenient. It’s made of high-quality material dotted with grommets for easy installation. It has features that protect it from the natural elements, and it’s huge enough to provide good coverage. Therefore, if you want immediate satisfaction and good protection for a dock, this product is for you.

This product’s measurements provide satisfactory coverage. It’s made of marine-grade tri-laminate which makes it resistant to molds and mildew, making it ideal for frequent exposure to saltwater and freshwater. It’s also resistant to tearing and UV-light so it will retain its color for a long time.

The product’s interior is made of foam padding which is dense enough to withstand contact without collapsing. The grommets attached to it allows for convenient installation. They’re also resistant to corrosion, so you don’t have to worry about replacing them at all.

However, it’s not thick enough for constant and heavy beatings in docks with high traffic or huge boats. Its padded foam interior is not the strongest material out there; it should’ve been thicker. After months of using it, it’ll likely start to rip.

That said, if you’re on a budget and the dock is highly frequented, installing temporary DIY dock bumpers might work better for you. However, if you have your own dock or a designated slip, this product gives great value for an economical price.

What We Like
  • Gives good coverage
  • UV- and mold-resistant (marine-grade)
  • Easy to install with corrosion-resistant grommets
What We Don’t Like
  • Not thick enough for highly-frequented docks

I believe that this product is highly valuable when used according to its capacity. It’s worth the investment for non-frequented docks or exclusive slips. If you use it in gentle conditions as a light-duty tool, it’ll provide both quality and convenience for you.

8. Innovative Outdoor 300021 Dock Bumper Wheels

innovative outdoor 300021 dock bumper wheels

The next product is the only dock bumper wheel on this list. It’s made of durable material and is very easy to install. It’s specifically made to make docking and undocking safe for both your boat and the dock. If you want to get in and out of your slip without any hassle and worry, this product is your perfect match.

The Innovative outdoor dock bumper wheel is made of poly-vinyl to ensure excellent durability and unmatched quality. To install, you just have to slide this product over a galvanized post and you’re good to go. The diameter of its hole can fit posts with a variety of sizes.

This product is extremely helpful to those who are not yet confident to dock and undock their boats, especially in tight slips. Buying a bumper wheel will give you time to practice tight maneuvers without the risk of damaging your boat and dock. This bumper heel’s size is more than enough to keep your boat at a safe distance from the dock.

One feature I love about this product is that it floats so you can put them around the pilings below the dock. That way, no matter the water level, you can ensure protection for your boat. Also, you can tie this on the edge of your dock like DIY tire bumpers.

The downside is that it’s not UV-resistant, so its white coating can turn to black easily.

What We Like
  • Durable and high-quality
  • Gives boat protection when docking/undocking
  • Easy to install
  • Can be used under the dock
What We Don’t Like
  • Its white coating fades easily

For me, this product is a must-have, especially for newbie boat enthusiasts. However, even experts need this, especially when getting in and out of tight slips in rough waters. It’s a convenient and versatile product that can be positioned in several ways depending on your needs.

9. Dock Edge Torpedo Post Bumpers

dock edge torpedo post bumpers

Next on our list of the best boat dock bumpers is a product that will make your leg pipes safe and fashionable, just like your fiberglass boat. The way it’s designed lessens the risk of scratches from bolts. The material’s quality is great and durable, so get ready to enjoy a reliable material for a long time.

This torpedo-shaped bumper is the perfect, easy-to-install product to protect your boat and your pipes. It’s made of high-quality, marine-grade material which makes it ideal for use in freshwater and saltwater. It doesn’t fade or wear out easily and can withstand frequent impact. It’s also resistant to molds.

This product’s measurements are enough to provide decent coverage to your pipes. You can deflate and inflate this product depending on your needs. To install, simply slide or wrap this product over and around pilings or poles.

Since it simply “hugs” your dock’s legs, you won’t need any bolts at all. This means that your boat is not at risk of brushing into protruding heads as you moor it to the dock. Like the bumper wheel, this provides smooth and excellent protection in tight slips, especially for those new to boating.

My only complaint about this product is its limited application. It can only be used to wrap pilings and poles. It’s a bit challenging to fasten to dock edges because it doesn’t have flat, spread-out sides for screws. If you need to secure your dock edges, you’ll need to buy an entirely different product.

What We Like
  • Provides good coverage
  • Easy to install
  • Durable and high-quality
  • Versatile/adjustable (can be inflated/deflated)
What We Don’t Like
  • Limited applications

All in all, I still highly recommend this product for pipes that are perfect for it. The only hassle is when the measurements don’t match; other than that, this torpedo bumper is a gem.

10. Vestil 624-4.5 Laminated Dock Bumpers

vestil 624-4.5 laminated dock bumpers

The next product on our list is once again made of recycled truck tires. It’s designed to protect docks that are highly frequented by vehicles. It’s super durable which makes it ideal for people who use their docks for loading and unloading. The Vestil laminated dock bumper is a horizontal loading bumper that prevents docks from getting damaged by vehicles.

The truck tires are layered to act as rubber pads that make the product flexible and resistant to impact. Furthermore, it’s reinforced by fabric for increased strength. This is not your regular bumper; it’s a heavy-duty tool for load-carrying water vehicles.

On each side of this rectangular bumper are thick steel plates with holes for easy installation. These plates can be welded or bolted to the dock for stability. This secure fastening enables the product to withstand frequent beating by large vessels.

Since it’s made of rubber, it may easily rub off on water vessels. Its lamination mitigates that, but it may still not be enough, especially after months of use. With that being said, be careful not to brush your fiberglass boat on this bumper because it’ll get scuffed.

I don’t have a complaint about this product. It’s just limited to heavy usage in loading docks, marinas, and large piers. It’s not suitable for regular docks at all. It will only scratch and scuff cool leisure and fishing boats.

What We Like
  • Durable and heavy-duty
  • Can withstand frequent use
  • Can be used in huge docks and piers and buildings
What We Don’t Like
  • Limited to heavy usage; not suitable for regular leisure and fishing boats

I couldn’t recommend this product enough as a heavy-duty loading dock bumper. You’ll get great value from this for a long time at a reasonable price if it’s used for what it’s made for. You can also use this as a cushion for the walls of storage buildings to prevent damages to vehicles.

11. Dock Edge PVC Corner Dock Bumpers

dock edge pvc corner dock bumpers

This next product from Dock Edge is versatile. It’s designed to be mounted on both flat and curved areas. It’s made of durable marine-grade PVC which is undoubtedly the most ideal material for dock bumpers. This material allows the product to be a heavy-duty tool which is ideal for high-traffic docks for large boats.

This product is designed to fit the dock edges, corners, and pilings. Its center is pushed back to an angle (like the top of a triangle) to accommodate corners and other curved areas. Meanwhile, the edges are a bit fanned out to leave space for holes and screws in case you want to install them to the dock’s edges. In other words, this product is enough to cover every area of your dock.

The interior of this bumper is reinforced with ribs to make it resistant to regular beating. The overall construction of this product is very sturdy, so to install it, you must set aside time to drill holes through it.

Additionally, the Dock Edge dock bumper can remain unharmed against any climate. It’s resistant to damaging sunlight, saltwater, ice, molds, and mildew thanks to its UV protectors and fungicides.

This is an almost-perfect, all-in-one product for all the protection you need. I say “almost” because it doesn’t have a bumped-out protrusion that reaches the surface of the dock from its edge. It can’t give gunnel protection which is essential when bad weathers come and you left your boat docked.

What We Like
  • High-quality and durable
  • Sturdy and heavy-duty
  • Resistant to damage due to natural elements
  • Versatile; can be mounted to dock edges, corners, and pilings
What We Don’t Like
  • May take time to install
  • Doesn’t offer gunnel protection

This is certainly part of my top 3 products on this list. It’s way more versatile and durable than any of the others. I highly recommend you buy it right now.

12. Hull Hugr Dock Bumpers

hull hugr dock bumpers

Next on our list is another product that can stand unscathed against the elements. Hull Hugr chose the best material for this product, allowing it to serve you for a long time. It’s also wide enough to provide good coverage. That said, if you’re looking for a durable, high-quality material to protect your dock edges, this is the one for you.

This Hull Hugr dock bumper is made of vinyl, also known as polyester tri-laminate. It’s resistant to the harsh UV rays and normal wear and tear. I like the fact that its density level is achieved using polyethylene foam which makes the product a soft yet thick and sturdy cushion that’s enough to withstand frequent impact.

It has evenly-spaced steel grommets attached to it for easy installation. Besides, they are resistant to corrosion so you don’t have to worry about them breaking anytime soon. Simply position it properly and drill down the screws for a secure attachment. No matter how long you use it, this bumper will remain rip-free and unmoved.

One of the downsides of this bumper is that it’s not sturdy enough to withstand heavy pressure and impact. It works fine, even for high-traffic docks, as long as there are no large water vessels around. Aside from that, the screws that come with it are too small for the grommets. Therefore, you’d have to buy bigger ones separately which can be annoying.

What We Like
  • Provides soft yet sturdy protection for docks and boats
  • Made of durable material
  • Easy to install through corrosion-resistant grommets
  • Enough to survive high-traffic docks for small- to medium-sized boats
What We Don’t Like
  • Not sturdy enough for large vessels
  • The screws are too small

Overall, this is a great investment for docks and boat slips. It provides the perfect cushion without leaving scuffs to your boat. The small screws won’t be that much of a bother once you experience this product’s greatness.

13. Rage Powersports DB-100 Rubber Dock Bumpers

rage powersports db-100 rubber dock bumpers

Our 13th entry on this list is a heavy-duty marine accessory made for loading docks, trucks, buildings, and other industrial sites. Its materials are cleverly selected to help the product withstand forceful impacts.

Rage’s industrial dock bumpers are made of industrial-grade rubber, making them perfect as a truck trailer or boat dock bumper guards. Its rubber material gives it the perfect thickness to cushion heavy contacts. It compresses enough upon impact to prevent boats from hitting the dock.

Due to its rubber material, it can scuff your hull, but if you’re not concerned about preserving the flawlessness of your boat, then this product is an amazing choice. I love how this product can cushion both the dock and the ship from intense blows, especially during harsh weather. I’ve used this on my dock and my big fishing boat stayed unharmed after a long night of strong winds and waves.

Rubber is also resistant to moisture and changes in climate, making it more durable and long-lasting. It even resists oil so it’s very ideal for huge, busy industrial docks and piers. It’s like those oil-resistant aluminum dock bumpers that are immune to saltwater.

The holes in this product are bored through its entire thickness. Through this, the bumper can be fastened securely and tightly to the dock without any bolt heads showing. This lessens the likelihood of boat scratches which is very beneficial.

The only thing missing for me to make it perfect is the gunnel protection. If that’s a negligible factor for you, then this product is what you’ve been looking for.

What We Like
  • Durable and heavy-duty
  • Can stand against changing climates
  • Can handle huge vessels and trucks
What We Don’t Like
  • No gunnel protection
  • Will scuff fiberglass boats

In conclusion, I highly recommend this product for practical use. This isn’t meant to protect leisure fiberglass boats, but it’s a must-have for heavy-duty industrial work.

14. Playsafer Rubber Dock Bumpers

playsafer rubber dock bumpers

This Playsafer product is made of 100% recycled material. It’s thick and heavy which makes it a good protector. Based on its construction, it’s safe to say that this product is meant to be used on marinas, loading docks, and docks for huge water vessels.

Although this product is made of dense rubber, it has cavities beneath its surface. This construction allows it to compress during impact so it can safely cushion mammoth vessels that hit the dock it’s mounted on. Without this compression, the rubber would simply push back whatever hits it and that won’t end well.

What I love about his product is its clean finish. Unlike other rubber bumpers on this list, its surface won’t scuff your boat. It’s the perfect heavy-duty, industrial-grade bumper for large and graceful leisure and fishing boats.

Like the previous product, this bumper’s holes are also bored through its entire thickness. This allows for secure fastening with bolts buried beneath the surface-level. This saves your boat from scratches and rashes due to contacts with bolt heads.

However, installing this product may require assistance because it’s too heavy for a one-man job. Another missed feature is, again, the lack of gunnel protection. If your boat is large, this may be negligible.

However, if you happen to moor your regular-sized boat to a dock clothed with this bumper, you may have a problem when the waters get rough.

What We Like
  • Durable and heavy-duty
  • Can stand against changing climates
  • Can handle huge vessels and trucks
  • Has a clean finish; will not leave markings on boats
What We Don’t Like
  • No gunnel protection

Overall, I find this product highly recommendable. It works more wonders than most of the products on this list because of its build quality and clean surface.

15. Taylor Made 46076 Vinyl Dock Bumpers

taylor made 46076 vinyl dock bumpers

This last product by Taylor Made is made of durable and reliable materials. It provides good dock corner and edge coverage. Aside from that, it also reaches the dock area. It features a good design which is ideal if you’re looking for a functional yet chic-looking dock accessory to match your boat.

This dock bumper is made of pro vinyl, making it immune to changing climates. It’s resistant to discoloration despite frequent exposure to the UV light. Also, its color is molded into the vinyl, so no matter how many times your craft brushes on it, the color won’t transfer.

The product is thick enough to provide great cushioning for the dock and your boat during impact. Also, one of its sides extend beyond the edge and on to the dock’s surface so your gunnels will remain safe, even in rough waters.

This product is lightweight, so installing it is a one-man job. However, one downside I see here is that it doesn’t have built-in grommets or holes. You must drill the holes yourself on the spacious flaps on both sides of this bumper, buy the screws, and fasten it to the dock.

Another downside I see is that it may not stand a chance against larger vessels, especially when they’re blown to the dock by strong winds and currents. The material it’s made of is softer than others, so it can only be helpful for smaller boats.

What We Like
  • High-quality, durable material
  • The color will not transfer to your boat
  • Resistant to UV light and color-fading
  • Lightweight
  • Has gunnel protection
What We Don’t Like
  • Requires drilling time before installation
  • Not strong enough for huge boats

In conclusion, this product is extremely capable of protecting docks and boats, except the huge ones. However, when its capacity is maximized, it’ll prove to be a great investment.

Who is This for?

best boat dock bumpers

The people who will mainly benefit from dock edge bumpers are dock owners. This is because it is designed to help maintain docks’ structural integrity and absorb the impact caused by the collision of water vehicles to the docks.

Boat owners will also highly benefit from dock edge bumpers. Although most boats are already fitted with fenders, having an extra layer of protection with dock edge bumpers will help maintain their pristine condition.

Factors to Consider When Buying a Dock Bumper

Here are the different factors you should consider when choosing the best boat dock bumpers for your needs:

Style

There are several styles of dock bumpers. However, these are the most common ones that you will find out there:

Horizontal Side Bumpers – This style of bumper wraps over the upper part of the dock frame. They are in standard 10 inches long and can be configured according to your dock and boat size. It is effective in protecting the dock against the hull of the boat. It is best used on docks that are less than 18 inches above the water level.

Vertical Dock bumpers – The vertical dock bumpers work the same way as horizontal side bumpers. The big difference is that this type of bumpers can be adjusted up and down which makes it more versatile.

Corner Bumpers – Corner bumpers are shaped with a right angle. It is designed this way to protect the dock corners from the boat hull.

Wheel Bumpers – Dock bumper wheel are alternatives to corner bumpers. It rolls in a horizontal direction to protect the dock from the boat’s hull. It can take up between 6 to 8 inches of the dock corner.

DIY Dock Bumpers – You may have noticed old rubber tires on the sides of a dock in the past. The use of those tires are examples of DIY dock bumpers. Although they may be a more economical and sustainable option than buying specifically designed marine dock bumpers, they are not as effective and durable.

Furthermore, DIY dock bumpers can significantly reduce the overall aesthetic of the boat or the dock. This reduces the “luxury” appeal of a boat, so if you want to maintain its glamorous design, opting for actual dock bumpers that come in different shapes and styles is a better choice.

Material

Aside from the different styles of dock bumpers, another important factor that you should consider is the material. When it comes to large water vessels, marine-grade vinyl is one of the best materials of choice. It is designed to withstand harsh marine conditions so it is safe against rust and rotting.

For lighter water vessels, flexible PVC vinyl can do the job. However, it will not be as long-lasting as marine-grade vinyl.

In terms of bracket hardware, aluminum dock bumpers brackets are an excellent choice. Aluminum is a material that is highly resistant to rust so it will not easily rot and discolor despite being submerged to water most of the time.

Edging vs. Padding

Between edging and padding, dock edging is the most economical choice. It is ideal for lighter water vessels. However, although it is the more affordable option between the two, it does not necessarily provide all the protection benefits that you will get from a dock padding.

Dock paddings have interior pads that enable them to absorb bump or collision impact. If you have a larger vessel, this one is the better option.

Water Type Compatibility

Another factor that you have to pay close attention to when shopping for boat dock bumper guards is its compatibility with the water type. There are dock bumpers that are mainly designed for freshwater, while others do better on saltwater.

There are also boat dock bumpers that are designed for either type of water, but it is still important to pay attention to this to avoid buying the wrong one and wasting money.

Fungi and UV Protection

If you are concerned about how your docks look, choosing dock bumpers with standard fungi and UV protection is your best move. Opting for dock bumpers that have these features will also help lessen the need for maintenance.

Advantages and Disadvantages of Using a Boat Dock Bumper

dock edge bumpers

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of using a boat dock bumper:

Advantages

  • Design Reduce Impact Damage – At some point in your boating career, you will eventually collide with the dock in a hard way. When that happens, it is best to have dock bumpers even if you already have boat fenders to avoid significant damages. This is the biggest benefit you will actually get out of this device.
  • Long-term Durable Investment – Although dock bumpers are not cheap, they can be a long-term investment because they can last for many seasons. You will definitely get your money’s worth out from it.
  • Low Maintenance – Dock bumpers do not require plenty of maintenance, especially when you installed it properly. However, some may discolor over time due to water and sun exposure, but that is an easy fix with deep cleaning.

Disadvantages

  • Affect Dock Aesthetic – Depending on the dock bumper that you will be choosing, it might affect your boat’s overall aesthetic. However, since there are plenty of types and style options available, finding one that is both functional and beautiful is possible.
  • Costly – Dock bumper can be a little costly, depending on the brand that you will be purchasing. However, fixing a dock or boat damage can be more expensive.

Care and Maintenance of Dock Bumper

Dock bumpers for pontoon boats and other types of water vessels are not high-maintenance, but they still require some care from time to time. Here are some care and maintenance tips that you might find useful for your dock bumpers:

  • Use Pressurized Spray – If you notice dirt accumulation on your dock bumpers, you can simply use a pressurized spray to remove them. This will also help maintain the white color of your dock bumpers. You can do this at the same time you wash your boats.
  • Do Repairs on Jagged Corners – Jagged corners can be a source of tears. To prevent that, check your bumpers periodically, and if you notice jagged corners, use a hot blade or a soldering iron to melt the corners to prevent it from shedding.
  • Follow Installation Instructions Properly – Taylor Made dock bumpers, dockmate dock bumper fender and dock edge bumpers have comprehensive instruction manuals for good reasons. That is to ensure that their products work well and last as long as possible hence it is vital for you to follow their instructions properly.

Frequently Asked Questions

faqs

What are The Best Dock Bumper Brands?

When it comes to brands of the best boat dock bumpers, the names Dock Edge, Hull Hugr Marina, Attwood, Taylor Made are on the top of the list.

Each of these brands has its own unique dock bumper design that can absorb different vessel impact magnitudes. They also differ in terms of price points and durability.

Ultimately, the best brand depends on the buyer and what their dock bumper needs are. You can check the boat bumpers for docks review mentioned above to compare the best brands objectively and find which one is the best fit for your needs and preference.

Are Dock Bumpers and Boat Fenders The Same?

No, dock bumpers and fenders for boats are not the same. There seems to be many who are confused between the difference of these two.

Dock bumpers are placed on the edge of a dock while fenders are on boats. However, they have the same purpose: to absorb bump and collision impact, which is why it is understandable why the two terms are confused.

How to Install and Use Dock Bumpers?

Here are the easy steps of how to install and use dock bumper:

Step #1: Measure the dock and find the right height

In this step, you need to identify how many boats will be accommodated by your dock. Once you do that, you will know how many bumpers you will need. The general rule is that one boat must have at least two bumpers.

After that, measure the height you will need for the bumpers. Avoid positioning the bumpers too high because they will be rendered useless as the boat will just slide underneath it.

Step #2: Attach the mounting bracket

Position the mountain bracket you will be using for the dock bumper and mark its position using a marker. Drill holes on the marker indicators you made a while ago and bolted the brackets.

Step #3: Place the bumpers

It is now time to place the bumpers. Depending on what type or brand it is, executing this step can be done in different ways. To avoid making mistakes, refer to the instruction manual of the dock bumper that you purchased.

Step #4: Seal

Since the hardware will be around marine conditions, you need to seal the wood you drill on and the hardware to prevent rusting and decay. Put a generous amount of silicon along the holes and the hardware.

How do I Protect My Boat from Dock Damage?

You can protect your boat against dock damage by using dock bumpers and boat fenders. Dock bumpers will absorb the collision impact of your boat. This is especially helpful and important if you are new to boating and have yet to master the art of smoothly docking.

On the other hand, boat fenders function the same way as dock bumpers except that they are attached to the boat instead of the dock. With both dock bumpers and boat fenders, you can significantly protect your boat against dock damage.

Is there a Warranty for Dock Bumpers?

You will be glad to know that almost all of the dock bumper brands offer some form of warranty for their products. However, it is vital to take note that each manufacturer has different terms and conditions in its warranty policies.

The types of warranties offered for dock bumpers can range between replacement for defective parts to refund for a specific period. Most of the warranties offered by manufacturers are indicated in their product descriptions, so it is not that hard to find.

However, it is important to know whether the manufacturer you are buying from has a good track record for customer care and honoring warranty. This will save you plenty of time and headache in the future in case you encounter a problem with the product you will be buying.

Where to Buy Dock Bumpers?

Dock bumpers are very accessible. You can find them in local marine supply shops in your area, malls or shopping center. You can also opt to shop online.

The advantage of buying dock bumpers from a local store is that you do not have to wait for long delivery time. You can immediately take it home with you and install it right away.

If you choose to shop online, you can easily compare prices between one retailer to another. You can also avail of several discounts and promo offers.

However, one downside is that you may need to pay for an expensive delivery fee because it can be a bulky item. There is also long delivery time, depending on where you are located.

Conclusion

Without a doubt, dock bumpers are a smart investment. However, the only question is, what are the best dock bumpers for you? Although this is a question only you alone can answer, we hope that the list of products reviewed and the comprehensive guide mentioned above has helped you find the right answers.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top