Stuffing life jackets deep into a dank locker, tossing them inside a head compartment, jamming them under cushions in the cabin, or stowing them in any area that’s tough to reach in the harrowing moments of a dire situation is one of the worst things a boater can do.
Overhead storage bags resolve this dilemma. They stow life jackets out of the way, yet with just a pull of a zipper, the jackets are immediately accessible. Many new boats feature overhead canvas stowage for life jackets, but if you have an older boat with a hardtop, fabric T-top or Bimini top, you can add overhead storage.
Both the C.E. Smith T-top/Bimini storage bag and Kwik Tek PFD-T4 T-Bag hold four Type II life jackets. The Kwik Tek PFD-T6 T-Bag stows six Type II jackets. Made with durable nylon, these easy-to-install bags feature breathable mesh panels to vent moisture and inhibit mildew. Plus, there are pockets for stowing light items, such as charts, sunglasses and flashlights. Here’s how to install one.