Fun, fast, and family friendly - these are just some of the things that have made the deck boat crazy popular in recent years. Often brandished as one of the best boats for big groups, deck boats come with tons of space for versatile, roomy boating comfort. And while many of them come out of the dealership complete with all the basics, there are a bunch of deck boat accessories you can buy to make that space feel like your own.
From practical pieces, to decorative touches, to funky additions just for the fun of it, the choices are endless when it comes to deck boat accessories. So if you were looking for ideas to customize your boat and make it feel just like home, these picks might just spark your creativity.
There are a few deck boat accessories that are more than just pleasure and amusement. These essentials might just help improve your deck boat experience and help you enjoy your boat with greater comfort, ease, and satisfaction.
1. Deck Boat Cover
Fact: most recreational boat owners will actually only use their boat for about 100 hours annually at most. On average, recreational boats like deck boats and pontoon boats see the water between 5o to 70 hours in a year. The rest of the time, it's going to be in storage. And while a cozy little garage might seem like its more than enough to keep your boat protected, it's probably not.
Pests, dust, and moisture can mess up your deck boat's interior when it's left for too long. That's why a deck boat cover is considered one of the essential boat accessories.
We recommend the MSC Heavy Duty 600D Marine Grade Waterproof Boat Cover as it's designed to protect your precious boat against dirt, stains, and more for long term storage.
2. Telescopic Ladders
Sure, you could always just jump into the water out of your deck boat. But unless you've got enough upper body strength to hoist your own dead weight after a prolonged swim, then it's going to be impossible to get back on board - unless you've got a telescopic ladder at the ready.
Making it easy to make your way in and out of the water minus all that haphazard jumping and hoisting, a telescopic ladder can mount securely to the rear of your boat for effortless entry and exit. Of course, it also doubles as a safety feature in case you need quick access to or from the waves.
We like the Hoffen Telescopic 4 Step Stainless Steel Ladder.
3. Bimini Top
Fun under the sun might seem like a good idea until you actually try boating in the noontime glare. That harsh sunlight can easily burn through your skin, causing painful sunburns and irritation. Not to mention the damage it can deal on your seat vinyl and deck boat interior. So again, the bimini top comes out as one of the indispensable deck boat accessories you need to have.
For extended coverage, a 4-bow bimini top provides maximum shade and durability. And because they're easy to collapse, remove, and secure back in place, you can easily throw the shade when you need it, or get rid of it when you want to gaze at the glorious night sky.
Check out the Naviskin Bimini Top Cover with Aluminum Frame.
4. Anchor Winch
Tossing an anchor out into the water and then putting in the effort to manually pull it back on your deck boat can be a load of work. So why not invest in an anchor winch? This deck boat accessory lets you effortlessly deploy and retrieve your anchor whether you've found a place on the lake for fun or fishing.
Another reason why you might want to get an anchor winch as an accessory is because it keeps the mess of of your deck boat. And since this is going to be a major purchase, consider getting a quality brand.
We like the MinnKota Deckhand 40 Electric Anchor Winch as it features reliable performance perfect for a deck boat.
5. Waterproof Pouches, Bags, and Document Holders
Not everything can be so careless dipped into the water. Your mobile phone, electronics, registration papers, identification cards, documents, and even simply a fresh change of clothes all need to be stored so that they won't be rendered useless or damaged by moisture.
A waterproof mobile phone pouch can even let you use your phone underwater. For clothes and other personal effects you want to keep dry, you can toss them into a waterproof duffel bag. And since you're going to want to keep identification cards, registration papers, and other documents for your deck boat at the ready, you might as well cop a waterproof document holder to boot.
6. Paraphernalia Caddy
Always misplacing your sunglasses, key, wallet, and other personal effects and accessories? The thing about deck boats is that there's not always enough storage space on board. On the upside, that's something you can easily address with a caddy.
This must have deck boat accessory provides extra storage space at the captain's area to keep all of your small items within reach. If you don't want to drill holes into the console, you can opt for a caddy with strong suction cups to hold the accessory in place while you're underway.
Check out the Shoreline Marine Caddy to keep your personal items in the one place.
Moving over to safety territory, these accessories are must-haves in their own right. But instead of offering comfort, this list of deck boat accessories shifts the focus to safety and security. If anything, they're essential for mitigating potentially dangerous outcomes during your boating trip.
7. Personal Flotation Device
Let it be known that life jackets aren't suggested gear, they're required gear. In fact, there should be a personal flotation device for every person on the deck boat. If your deck boat is longer than 16 feet, then you're also going to need a throwable PFD on board.
Remember that every state will have their own laws when it comes to the kind of PFD required for the specific boating activities you engage in. Generally speaking however, type II PFDs are most commonly required across different jurisdictions. Keep in mind that they have to be the right size for the passenger using them.
We like the Airhead Type II Keyhole Life Jacket.
8. Floating Key Chain
Yes, it happens. Slippery fingers can easily soil a fun day on the lake, especially if they just happen to let go of a set of deck boat keys or other small valuables. So unless you want to prematurely dive into the water to retrieve a set of keys that's sinking to the fingery depths at a faster pace than you can swim, a floating key chain should be a priority deck boat accessory.
Make sure to choose something in a bright, obvious, contrasting color like bright neon yellow or orange to guarantee that it stays visible against the dark water. And while a few cork balls tethered to a string might do just fine for a few lightweight keys, you can opt for a much more buoyant strap that can also keep things like wallets and smartphones afloat.
Check out the Nordic Flash Waterproof Camera Float.
9. Telescoping Boat Hook and Paddle
You can never really tell when you might come face to face with motor, engine, or battery problems on your deck boat. And just in case they happen, you're going to want to be prepared with some way to propel yourself safely back to shore. A telescoping boat paddle or two might move you forward at just a fraction of the speed of your deck boat's engine, but it's better than moving wherever the water takes you.
Another reason you might want to have this with the rest of your deck boat accessories at the ready is because you never know when you might need to reach out to something far into the water. Maybe a duffel bag fell overboard, or maybe someone got cramps while swimming and they just can't swim back. The hook end should come in handy for that.
We recommend the Emergency Multi-Purpose Telescoping Boat Hook & Paddle.
10. Rescue Rope
If you're heading into dangerous water and you want to make sure you're up to the challenge, then a rescue rope should be a suitable on-board addition. This neon orange rope comes in a waterproof bag that you can toss to the person in need of rescue. The rope then pulls out of the bag is it travels through the air, letting you pull the person to safety.
Keep in mind that the rescue rope can't and shouldn't replace a throwable flotation device. But if you really want to be prepared for whatever situation might come your way, then this added safety tool might be worth keeping on deck.
We like the Scotty E793 Throw Bag with Floating MFP Line.
11. Fire Extinguisher
A fire out on the middle of the water might seem like an unlikely reality - but it happens. Malfunctioning motors and engines can cause a spark and thus start a fire. That's why a fire extinguisher is considered one of the must have deck boat accessories.
Keep in mind that extinguishers are designed for various kinds of flames, depending on what caused them. See to it that you buy an option that can extinguish various kinds of fires. Find an accessible place on board for storage like under the seats to keep it within reach when the need arises.
We highly recommend the Amerex Fire Extinguisher with Wall Bracket.
12. First Aid Kit
It doesn't matter if you're heading far out into the water or just hanging out by the dock - a first aid kit is a must for any deck boat. Although you might be able to piece together your own first aid kit by purchasing its contents separately, you can typically save a few bucks by buying the set as a pre-assembled bundle.
But remember, since the application is going to be in a marine environment, you're going to want something that can survive a little moisture now and again. A waterproof first aid kit can keep all of your bandages, tapes, and other essentials safe and dry in harsh marine conditions.
It's important to have this Compact Waterproof First Aid Kit for any kind of emergency.
Fun and Cool Deck Boat Accessories
And now we get to the fun part. There are deck boat accessories out there that are purely for the pleasure and the added decorative appeal. And while they serve no other purpose than to make your boat more fun to use and to look at, there's no denying that they can also impressively improve the overall experience. So here's a quick list of cool deck boat accessories worth trying out.
13. LED Lights
Just for the record, your local law enforcement will impose specific laws and regulations when it comes to what kinds of lights you can use and where they should be on your deck boat. But if you're docked, or if you have a private dock at home, then souping up your deck boat with color changing LED light strips can turn that get together into a full on party.
While there are some LED lighting choices that you can control with a remote, some picks let you adjust the lighting settings through a smart phone app. This lets you hook the LED lights up to your music to create a more immersive, dynamic party experience for family and friends.
We like these Novostella Smart Outdoor LED Strip Lights.
14. Waterproof Speaker
Maybe the deck boat dealer offered to toss in a sound system, but the price was just way beyond budget. Don't sweat it. You can always just cop a waterproof speaker for a fraction of the cost. A waterproof Bluetooth speaker won't give you a surround sound experience, but it should be more than enough to resonate your music throughout the deck.
Again, there are lots of choices. But this EBODA Bluetooth Speaker features with color changing LED lights, a powerful, long-lasting battery life, and even the ability to survive complete immersion of up to 30 minutes. The rugged little thing packs powerful audio capabilities, but cost just about as much as the loose change in your pocket.
15. Towable Water Tube
What could be more fun than towing the kids on an inflatable tube? Perhaps one of the greatest joys of laketop frolic would be the potential for water sports and other fun activities. Now, if you're thinking about towing people atop a tube, not any tube will serve the purpose.
Make sure you choose a quality inflatable that's designed for the purpose of being towed behind a deck boat. And before you set out on the first ride, make sure you also have the right kind of tow rope for the job. This quality tow rope features excellent durability and tensile strength to keep your kids safe as they glide over the lakes surface.
16. Ski Tow Bar
Since the deck boat is designed for speed, there's no second guessing the addition of a tow bar. If you've got friends that like trailing behind a boat at top speed, installing a tow bar can make your boat the focal point of every party and get together.
What's nice about tow bar accessories is that they don't cost a lot of money to purchase or to install. This specific choice features quality, versatility, and safety, letting you enjoy the excitement of water skiing without having to worry too much about installation technicalities and durability problems.
We recommend the TurboSwing Ski Tow Bar for your deck boat.
Fishing and Food Accessories
And let's not forget the anglers. There are lots of boaters out there who lay down loads of money to acquire a deck boat and soup it up with accessories so it satisfies every fishing need. If you're still trying to figure out the nuances, here's what you might need to turn your deck boat into a feasting and fishing extravaganza.
17. Rod Holders
Unless you have the patience to sit on board and wait for the next nibble, then you're going to want to install a bunch of fish rod holders. In fact, if you have enough attached to your boat, you might even be able to troll the water and catch more fish. They're often considered one of the most important fishing accessories for deck and pontoon boats.
Unlike pontoon boats that have multiple rails for easy rod holder installation, deck boats require more sturdy mounts. You must make sure you're choosing fishing rod holders with the right mounting hardware to securely install to your boat and keep your fishing rods firmly fixed in place while you wait for a bite.
We like the SmartMarine Deck Mount Fishing Rod Holder.
If you don't already have one, a cooler should be on your list of things to buy for your boat. Most boats will benefit immensely from a cooler, whether it's to store a fresh catch or to keep live bait on board. Some boaters have even come up with clever ways to build a custom cooler so that it functions just like a livewell for fish, but you could always just buy one off the web.
Coolers serve multiple purposes aside from just fishing. Letting you store your beer and other beverages in an icy cool space, a cooler helps make sure there won't be a shortage of booze while you enjoy the afternoon fishing your time away. Oh, and did we mention it can double as an extra seat?
Try out the Coleman Performance Cooler.
19. Cup Holders
You might say that cup holders are essential accessories even if you're not particularly interested in fishing, and you would be right. If you've ever tried boating with friends before, you probably already know how much cups and cans can contribute to the overall mess - especially when no one can remember where they put their own.
Cup mount accessories just make it easier for everyone to keep track of their beverage, and it prevents a whole lot of potential mess by preventing spills when you're underway. Again, it's a matter of finding the right kind of mount since deck boats don't have rails the same way that pontoon boats do. So it's essential that you find a choice that can securely mount to the surfaces available on deck.
20. Portable Grill
The grill is probably one of the last accessories you'd imagine on a deck boat. While this food accessory might seem a little extra, there's really nothing quite like grilling up a fresh catch right after a fishing session. Fortunately for you, there are marine grade grills up for grabs that you can safely use on deck boats to extend the fun and step up your food game.
The Cuisinart Petit Gourmet Gas Grill from the Cuisinart brand is perfectly portable grill that's easy to set up. Just keep in mind though that it's still going to be a fire hazard and that some states or lakes might have rules that regulate the use of grills on a deck boat. You must never operate it without supervision, don't light the grill when you're underway, and position it far from potentially flammable fixtures and items around the boat.
All Decked Out
These cool deck boat accessories can change the way you experience the water. Offering convenient, practical, and satisfying purpose, there's no reason why you shouldn't try at least one or two of the items on this list. So go ahead and deck out your boat with these fun and functional additions to find out just how much more enjoyable your deck boat can be.