Plastic Welding a Kayak – Step by Step

The material that many plastic canoes and kayaks are made of is called high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and is an extremely difficult material to repair. These chemical properties make your kayak extremely flexible and durable and also prevent other materials from adhering to it. HDPE is resistant to repairs using adhesives and sealants typical in most applications. However, this doesn’t mean that scratches, cracks, and holes in plastic kayaks can’t be fixed. Learn all about plastic welding a kayak in this article.

Plastic Welding Tool

The plastic welding tool is very useful for the repairs that our kayak or canoe requires. This tool can be purchased in physical stores and online, its cost starts at approximately 15 USD.

It is very similar to the tin soldering iron for repairing electrical items, but this tool melts plastic.

For the welds, you can buy plastic rods that come in different colors and are very economical.

plastic welding rod

How to Repair a Kayak Hull

The first thing to do is to clean the area to be repaired and make sure it is dry.

Connect the plastic welding and let it heat up for a few minutes. Approximately 5 minutes, depending on the model and power of each tool.

For example, I had a small hole in an accessory of my kayak as you can see in the following picture.

kayak repair 1

I heated the plastic with the plastic welder and slowly repaired it. Let the plastic melt slowly, do not force it.

kayak repair 2

Once filled, let it dry for a while. In a few minutes, it will be ready for the next step.

kayak repair 3

Then we must sand it by hand or with a sanding machine, but gently so as not to spoil the repair.

kayak repair 4

As you can see, it is a perfect and functional repair. I also repaired some friends’ kayaks and canoes with the same tool and they are happy with these repairs.

I hope this article about plastic welding a kayak will be helpful.