Beginner Surf Gear

What is the Best Hoist for a Kayak?

Owning a kayak means being able to go out paddling whenever you want, never having to rent gear, as well as being able to choose your perfect vessel. Every kayak owner knows that there is one major issue to this piece of gear though: storage. Kayaks can reach up to 15 feet in length and are certainly not the most compact or lightweight pieces of sporting equipment. One of the best solutions for storage is a kayak hoist.

Kayak hoists allow you to easily load and store your kayak in a hanging position. They help to free up space, keep your gear safe, and make stowing away your kayak a simpler process.

kayak hoists

What is a Kayak Hoist?

A kayak hoist is a clever storage solution for freeing up floor space. These hoists attach to the ceiling and provide a system for hanging your kayak overhead. Kayak hoists can be easily lowered and raised to allow for you to take down and pack away the kayak with minimal effort. Kayak hoists are not needed for inflatable kayaks.

These kayak pulley systems can be installed in garages, boathouses, or anywhere that has enough room to hang a canoe. Not only do these systems provide a safe and convenient place for storing your kayak, but they also make it easier to lower the kayak onto your car. You can also load some systems up with additional gear to make it easier to lift and store heavy objects.

What to Look Out for When Buying a Kayak Hoist

Properly storing your kayak doesn’t only offer you convenience, but it also helps to protect your equipment better. Keeping it securely stored on a kayak hoist can help to avoid things like mould, mildew, warping, or hull damage. Here are a few important considerations when buying a kayak hoist to help provide the best storage solution.

Installation Area

The kayak hoist is only really effective when installed in the right place. While the hoist itself may be strong enough to support a heavy kayak, the area where you attach the hoist also need to be strong enough.

Be sure to consider the attachment strength of the area where you will be installing the kayak hoist. This should be drilled into a ceiling or solid structural beam. Of course, you also need to make sure that there is enough space.


Of course, the kayak hoist needs to be able to hold up your equipment. Different options have different maximum capacities. Some are only suitable for one kayak, while others can hold multiple kayaks or a kayak and additional gear. Be sure to consider how much you need to store when buying a kayak hoist with the right level of strength.

fishing on kayak


Kayak hoists hang overhead. This means that they will require enough room for you to underneath them. This could be for parking a car, walking under, or storing additional gear. Make sure that the level of clearance offered by the kayak hoist works for your space and your needs.

Safe Locking

The best kayak hoists have a safe locking mechanism that helps to keep the kayak in place. These can be seriously heavy items, so you dont want them to slip out of place and fall on your car or head! A safe locking system includes rubber safety cleats on the rope to hold the kayak firmly in place when it is hung up.

The Best Kayak Hoist: Our Top Picks

Interested in finding the best possible storage solution for your kayak? We have chosen seven of the top kayak hoists below to help make it easier to find the perfect system for your needs. 

StoreYourBoard Kayak Ceiling Storage Hoist

  • Adjustable straps fit any kayak size
  • Adjustable horizontal centre strap
  • Holds up to 60 lbs
  • Quick and easy installation

This heavy-duty kayak storage hoist is the ideal solution for freeing up floor space in your garage. The hoist works well with all types of kayaks, as long as they don’t weigh more than 60 lbs. This is thanks to the fully adjustable straps that can hold all sizes and lengths. 

This kayak hoist has an adjustable horizontal centre strap supporting the high-strength loading straps. The loading straps are high strength and well supported. Although this system can take a big load, it still doesn’t take up much space and is very convenient to install in all kinds of areas.

The kayak hoist includes all of the mounting hardware and instructions required for easy installation. This pulley system is easy to install, easy to use and offers a convenient solution for lifting the kayak onto your car.

storeyourboard hoist

Great Working Tools Kayak Hoist Lift

  • Smooth pulleys and easy to use hooks
  • Holds up to 125 lbs
  • Anti-scratch rubber-coated hooks
  • Suitable for ceilings up to 12 ft

This kayak hoist system offers an easy solution for quick, simple storage. The heavy-duty hoist system can keep your kayak well out of the way while making it easy to take the kayak down when needed. This system can support a heavy load of 125 lbs.

This is a really simple system to install, with two points that are attached to the ceiling. These points use special hooks attached to a pulley. Loading on the kayak couldn’t be easier.

The rope is of a thick gauge for supporting a heavy load. The system can also hold things like bikes, paddleboards, ladders, and more. Just make sure to install the system correctly if you are planning on using it to store bicycles.

The pulley has a secure locking mechanism and the hooks are coated in anti-scratch rubber for greater safety. Everything is included in this kayak hoist kit for easy installation.

great working tools

RaxGo Kayak and Bike Ceiling Hoist

  • Easily stores a variety of heavy equipment
  • Includes two separate hoist systems
  • Easy installation and operation
  • Multiple built-in safety features

This pack of two overhead pulley storage systems offers the ideal solution for all kinds of heavy objects. You can use this as a kayak hoist, for bicycle storage, or creating all sorts of other overhead storage options for things like ladders, boxes, luggage, and more. 

The rubber-coated iron hooks are durable and safe to use without scratching your gear. The nylon ropes are also incredibly durable, and there is an integrated brake lock for safe height adjustment.

The adjustable belt and hook system is easy to install, flexible, and versatile for all kinds of scenarios and storage solutions. 

raxgo hoist

Rad Sportz Kayak Hoist Lift

  • A two-pack of storage hoist lifts
  • Holds up to 125 lbs capacity
  • Includes safety locking mechanisms
  • Suitable for ceilings up to 12 ft high

Rad Sportz offers this convenient pack of two kayak hoist lift systems. These are simple pulley systems that provide the ideal solution for overhead storage. They can hold a big load and are equipped with all the necessary safety features. This includes safety locking mechanisms and soft rubber-coated hooks. 

The durable straps will hold your kayak tight. The pulley system is very easy to use. It requires minimal effort to get your kayak up in the air or onto the roof of your car. This system is also particularly easy to install on your ceiling. 

rad sportz kayak hoist

Malone Auto Racks Triple Kayak Storage System

  • A simple carabiner and D-ring closure system
  • Heavy-duty extra-wide webbing
  • Can hold three boats at 135 lbs
  • A space-efficient storage system

Storing kayaks doesn’t have to be a complicated chore. This triple kayak storage system is simply mounted to the wall or ceiling using steel bolts. The system uses straps with carabiner and D-ring closures to hang a string of three kayaks.

You don’t get the added benefit of a pulley system, and the kayaks don’t load onto the roof of a car any easier with this rack. However, the storage system does offer unbeatable value, and it takes up less space than other kayak hoists.

The heavy-duty webbing can support a large capacity, so this is a perfect choice if you have multiple kayaks. With a basic steel bolt installation, the system is also really easy to install and take down again if needed.

triple kayak storage system

Extreme Max Kayak Hoist & Lift

  • A hoist system that lifts and stores various large objects
  • Can hold a 120 lbs capacity
  • Simple one person operation
  • Equipped with a locking mechanism

Extreme Max is another producer of high-quality kayak hoists. This system offers great value, considering how strong and useful it is. This kayak hoist uses a classic pulley design that offers hassle-free installation on garage ceilings. The system can support a 120 lbs capacity which is plenty for a large kayak. You can also use this pulley storage system for ladders, bicycles, and all sorts of other heavy objects.

This kayak hoist elevates each strap at the same rate for added stability. It is fully equipped with a locking mechanism for increased safety. All parts are made from powder-coated steel to offer superior durability. The system comes complete with all hardware necessary for installation.

extreme max

Atliprime Indoor Kayak Storage

  • A space-saving strap storage system
  • Quick-release buckles for easy loading
  • The system can hold two kayaks
  • Stainless steel heavy duty eye bolts

This is another incredibly simple strap storage system for kayaks. It can hang from the ceiling or wall and is able to accommodate two kayaks, paddleboards, surfboards, etc. This is a particularly practical choice for anyone with limited space, as the system can store two kayaks in the same amount of space that many hoists will only store one. 

This hanging system has quick-release buckles for easier loading and unloading. The stainless steel heavy duty eye bolts provide a high level of holding strength and are particularly easy to install.

If the system is not in use, it can fold up to the size of an iPhone. The materials used on this product are highly weather resistant. This makes it suitable for use in coastal environments where corrosion is often present. 

atliprime kayak storage

Where Can You Buy a Kayak Hoist?

Kayak hoists should be available in paddling shops and some sporting goods stores. These are pretty specific products and can often be quite hard to find. Shopping online is generally the best option here, as you have more choice for choosing the best kayak hoist for your space. 


Getting the right storage system is essential for any kayak owner. This helps to save space, it makes loading and unloading your kayak a breeze, and it provides protection and a longer lifespan for your watercraft. Kayak hoists come in a variety of forms.

They should be chosen according to your space and the amount of equipment that you have. Take a look through our best kayak hoist recommendations above for a range of the top-performing products available for all kinds of spaces. 

kayaking clear water


How Do I Store a Kayak in My Garage?

There are various storage options, including kayak hoists, wall-mounted racks, stands, upright storage, and slings. Kayak hoists/suspension systems are often the most convenient and practical choice.

Can You Stack Kayaks?

It is okay to stack kayaks as long as the weight is evenly distributed across the storage system. Just make sure that the system can handle the weight, and that you don’t ding or scratch the kayaks when stacking them. In this case it’s advisable to use a kayak cover.

How Heavy is a Kayak?

This varies depending on the size of the kayak and what material it is made from. Generally, kayaks range from 20 to 80 lbs. However, there are some kayaks that exceed the 100 lbs mark. A kayak hoist that can hold 125 lbs is generally more than sufficient.

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