Tips, Tricks & Trends

Are Bayliners as Bad of Boats as People Say?

If you spend time on the water, on a nice day, you’ll notice tons of boats on the water. With numerous boat companies and brands out there, chances are you’ve probably seen a Bayliner or two making waves in the water. You might even have considered buying one for yourself

But some owners of these boats paint a picture of a dismal product. Despite its popularity, Bayliner has gotten a bit of a bad rap in the boating community. InterMarineboats.com tells us a little about the Bayliner brand. We’ll also look at what some boat owners have to say about their Bayliner experience to see if you really should avoid these boats.

History of Bayliner boats

These boats were first produced in 1957 under Orin Edson, the founder of the Bayliner company. A few decades later, a manufacturer called Brunswick took over ownership of the boats. Brunswick owns many other well-respected brands in the industry like Boston Whaler.

Bayliner offers three different series of boats. The first one is the popular Bowriders line. These high-speed recreational boats are popular for spacious storage options. This makes them perfect for water activities or fishing. 

Another popular line of Bayliners is the center consoles. These boats are aptly named because the driving mechanism sits in the center of the boat. Fishermen use them because they can fish off both sides without the steering mechanism getting in the way. 

The last line of Bayliners being produced are the deck boats. These crafts are great for spending the day traveling around on the water. It comes with a wider hull than the other boats so that more people can gather together and relax. These boats are built to hold as many 16 people.

Are Bayliners really that bad?

People going for a ride in a Bayliner boat
A family going for a ride in a boat | GettyImages

Perusing the boat forums will bring up a few Bayliner owners who have shared their experiences with their crafts. Some forum users, especially on iBoats.com, say that their boats were made with cheap materials. They weren’t referring to the cost of the parts, however. 

Users said that the external parts of the boat are mainly for show, to get you to want to buy the boat. The internals, where it matters the most, will break down often as they’re reportedly made from poor quality parts. 

One of the biggest problems forum users reported was with the wood used on the boat. Instead of a high-quality sealant to protect it, the company used a simple gray primer on top. Also, some of the boats used steel staples, which could rust out if water gets into the boat. 

In most of these complaints, users didn’t mention a specific model or year of the boat so it would be foolish to attribute these problems to every Bayliner boat on the market. Some users mention how people just like to hate on Bayliner because the boats are cheaper.

The truth is most felt that Bayliners are a perfectly fine choice. You just have to make sure the person you’re buying it from took good care of it. You could have the same experience with any boat or Pontoon if you don’t care for it properly. 

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder

RELATED: Should You Buy From a Boat Dealer?

Despite the relatively poor reputation of Bayliner, the company has been in business for years. So the truth is, the boats couldn’t be that bad or the company would probably fail.

Brunswick, the parent company, is a huge manufacturer of many lines of boats, not just the Bayliner. It has been in this business for over 150 years. Because it has produced so many recreational vehicles, the company knows its stuff, and is well-established with parts manufacturing companies. This means cheaper parts and a more streamlined process. 

It can then pass on the cost savings to the customers wanting to get an affordable boat. According to InterMarineboats.com, Bayliner received a Marine Customer Satisfaction award for seven years in a row. This is something that shouldn’t just be ignored. 

So does all this mean you should avoid Bayliners all together or try one for yourself?. If you’re looking to get a used boat, consider going with another company or make sure the seller took excellent care of the one you’re looking to buy. However, if you’re buying new there’s no reason to think these boats won’t last you for years with the proper maintenance.