New vs. Used Rafts

Buying a whitewater raft or inflatable kayak is an exciting but also major decision. There are many different kinds of inflatable rafts on the market made from different materials and varying sizes that also fall under a wide array of price points. But, one of the biggest questions is if you should buy your raft new or used. 

The benefits of buying a used raft include the possibility of scoring a boat at a lower price point. Some companies including Rocky Mountain Rafts (RMR) allow the manufacturer warranty to carry over to the next owner. That is a great benefit! 

The cons of purchasing a used raft fall mostly into the unknown history of the boat. Things you want to check when looking to buy a used boat from any company include wear and tear. Does the outer material show signs of fraying? Are there any patches? Are the tubes holding air? Is there sun damage or fading? Are all of the d-rings or attachment points intact? Are the valves opening/closing and working properly? 

Some things are easier to repair on a used raft such as a leaky valve. Other things, like degraded material from improper care and damage are not. It is best to be able to inspect the boat in-person before purchase and know it’s history. 

Used rafts are currently selling at fairly high prices, leaving many people to wonder if buying used is really the best way to go.

Buying a new raft may be the best economical choice and here’s why: 

When you buy a new raft or inflatable kayak from a dealer or manufacturer you are kicking your boat’s life off with the longest period of covered manufacturer warranty you can have. You will also know the history of the boat, that it has been stored away from the sun, heat, and pests. For not much more than a used raft, you can rest easy knowing you are not inheriting any defects or damage and the maintenance and lifespan of the raft is in your hands. 

Rocky Mountain Rafts has been making high quality boats for over 10 years, with a solid warranty, at an entry level price point for new boaters. While we make boats at an affordable price we find our customers become lifelong fans and continue to enjoy our rafts as experienced boaters, paddling some of the best rivers around. 

Ready to make your decision? Check out our new boats here, or see what used/blemished boats we currently have available here.


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