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The Ultimate Guide to Choosing the Perfect Rub Rail for Your Boat

Whether you're a seasoned sailor or a novice boater, selecting the right marine rub rail for your vessel is an integral part of maintaining its aesthetics and functionality. These rails serve as the first line of defense against potential impacts and abrasive damage that your boat might encounter during its voyages.

Organizations like Integrity Marine Corp are committed to providing a wide range of marine products, including high-quality rub rails, to ensure your boat remains in top condition. Embarking on the journey to select the ideal rub rail may seem daunting, but this guide aims to simplify that process for you.

Understanding Rub Rails

Rub rails, also known as boat bumpers, serve as protective barriers between your boat and potential sources of damage, such as docks or other boats. They are typically made of various materials, including stainless steel, aluminum, PVC, or combinations thereof. Selecting the correct rub rail for your boat involves assessing factors such as the type of vessel you own, the conditions it will face, and your aesthetic preferences.

Types of Rub Rails and their Features

Below we have mentioned some common types of rub rails:

Stainless Steel and Aluminum Rub Rails

These are known for their durability and resistance to corrosion, making them ideal for boats frequently exposed to harsh marine conditions. In addition, stainless steel rails offer a sleek, modern look that many boaters prefer.

PVC Rub Rails

Polyvinyl Chloride or PVC rub rails are known for their versatility and affordability. They come in an array of colors, allowing you to match or contrast them with your boat's color scheme.

Combination Rub Rails

Combination rub rails usually incorporate a vinyl base with a stainless steel insert or an aluminum body with a PVC insert. These offer the best of both worlds: the strength and durability of metal and the flexibility and affordability of PVC.

Choosing the Right Rub Rail

When selecting a rub rail for your boat, consider your vessel's make and model, the size of the hull-to-deck joint, the waters you'll be navigating, and your aesthetic preferences.

For instance, if you frequently sail in salty or rough waters, a stainless steel or aluminum rub rail would be ideal due to its high corrosion resistance.

Conversely, if you're more concerned about matching your boat's aesthetic, a colored PVC rub rail might be the best choice.

Regardless of the type you select, ensure that you choose a rub rail that fits your boat's hull shape and the flange that the rub rail will sit on. If the flat flange is 2” tall, we recommend using a rub rail with a 1 ¾” height, as you don’t want to fill the entire flat surface. Also, identify the depth of the lip on your boat, as the rub rail that you select will have a lip, and you will want to make sure that the rail sits flat. A professional can help guide you in this decision-making process.

Installation of Your Rub Rail

Once you've selected the perfect rub rail, the next step is installation. While it's possible to install a rub rail yourself, it's recommended to hire a professional to ensure a proper fit and secure attachment.


Choosing the perfect rub rail is an essential part of maintaining your boat's integrity and appearance. Whether you prefer the durability of stainless steel, the versatility of PVC, or a combination of both, make sure your decision aligns with your boating needs and aesthetics. When in doubt, turn to trusted marine product suppliers like Integrity Marine Corp, who can guide you through the selection process, ensuring you make the best possible choice for your vessel.

Ready to find the ideal marine rub rail for your boat? Reach out to the professionals at Integrity Marine Corporation and start your journey toward enhanced boat protection today!

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