FAQ

Can I buy a kayak directly from Fluid?

For customers in South Africa, you can buy the kayak online from our new e-shop.

For those outside of South Africa, Fluid does export container loads. Contact office@fluidkayaks.com for more information.

 

What do I do if I have a Warranty issue?

Remember to register your kayak when you buy it to validate a claim. The online form is available here.

If you have registered, complete the Warranty Claim Form.

 

Is it wise to modify the volume or shape of my kayak by using heat? Will it void my warranty?

We do not advise anyone to modify a kayak using heat, as it can affect the structural integrity of the boat. Such a modification will void your warranty.

 

What is the best way to store a kayak?

A kayak should preferably be stored standing upright on its end. Other good options are hanging upside down, or lying on its side. Whatever you do, just don’t let it lie flat on its hull. Also make sure you store it away from direct sunlight.

 

What should I do if my whitewater kayak oilcans?

Plastic kayaks have a tendency to buckle slightly, especially underneath the seat. This is normal, doesn’t affected the strength of the kayak and has very little influence on performance. Our kayaks don’t oilcan easily, so it is not something that should worry you. If your kayak does oilcan more than you would expect, your best bet is to put it upside down in the sun, which will probably restore the hull shape reasonably well. If that doesn’t work, it might be necessary to push areas of the hull out by adding foam between the seat and hull selectively. If the oilcanning is severe, it might be a warranty issue, although unlikely.

 

How can I fix my kayak if it is broken or dented?

Firstly, if you suspect that the problem is caused by a manufacturing defect, contact us to check. If the damage is because of operator error, here are some basic info on how to fix the problem. A dent is normally very easy to fix. Put the boat in directly sunlight. Our plastic has very good memory, so chances are good that the dent will pop out after a few hours in the sun. If that doesn’t work, heat it up with cooking hot water (no open flames please!) and use a blunt object to assist the plastic in regaining it’s original shape.

A crack is a bit more complicated to fix. First choice is to take it to a reputable plastic welder to fix. If that is not possible, start by drilling the ends of the crack with a small drill to make sure the crack doesn’t propagate any further. Next step is to weld the crack closed. To make a long story short, you need some plastic filler (cut a narrow piece from the inside of the cockpit rim) and a source of heat. A plastic welding gun will be perfect, but since you will probably not have one available, a heat gun that concentrates the heat to a small area will do the job. Melt the plastic around the crack very slightly, melt the filler piece of plastic while feeding it into the molten crack, and use something like a spoon to work it all together and smoothen the surface. Be very patient with this job, you don’t want to burn a big hole in your boat. A soldering iron can be used to fix very small cracks too. Remember that the fixed crack will never be as strong as the original plastic, but at least your boat will be watertight again.

 

Where can I find the serial number of my boat?

On a recreational kayak, the number is engraved into the plastic on the stern deck somewhere, normally in the middle of the back storage compartment, otherwise underneath the stern handle. On older whitewater kayaks, the number will be underneath the stern handle. On 2009 and newer whitewater kayaks, the number will be on the right side of the boat, about 30cm in front of the stern, just below the split line.

 

What other gear will I need if I buy a kayak?

For a sit-on-top rec kayak, you will need the minimum of equipment, basically just a paddle and pfd (lifejacket). For a whitewater kayak, the basic list of equipment to get going is the following: paddle, helmet, pfd, spraydeck. If you live in a cold climate, you will need some warm and dry gear too, such as drytops and drypants and some thermal garments. Over time you will find yourself acquiring things like dry bags, safety equipment, neoprene socks, maybe even elbow pads, creek boots, etc. But don’t let this put you off, take your time, get to know the sport and find out for yourself where your interest lies and what you need.

 

What is the best way to transport my kayak?

There are various types of roof racks available, including inflatable and foam racks, but the most secure long term option will always be a solid aftermarket roof rack fitted to the roof of your vehicle. There are also accessories for roof racks available such as kayak or canoe cradles and also vertical bars to which the kayak can be tied. If you get yourself some of these accessories, just follow the instructions you got with it.

Otherwise, if you only have a set of roof racks on your vehicle without any other fancy gadgets attached to it, the best thing to do is to put your kayak upside down on the roof racks to prevent deformation of the hull. Move it around to find a natural position for the kayak to rest on the roof racks, and if needed, adjust the distance between the roof racks. It is also a good idea to put some foam padding between the racks and boat. Once everything is in position, use tie downs to secure the kayak to the roof racks. If you’re loading a long boat on your roof, it is advisable to tie the bow and stern of the boat to the bumpers too.

 

Is it OK to buy a second-hand kayak, or should I always buy new?

We would love to say you should always buy new, but really, there are many good second-hand kayaks available on the market. If you are just beginning, buying second-hand is always a good option, as it is possible that your idea of what kayak you need might change after you spent a few sessions or a season on the water. Buying new has some advantages of course: firstly you get a warranty on a new boat, secondly you know that the boat hasn’t got any hidden problems just waiting to pop out as soon as you take it to the water. And a nice shiny new boat always look cooler than an old scratched second-hand boat…