It's bad enough if it's raining when you want to be out having fun. But having to close all the portholes on a hot, humid day makes it just that much worse. Here's an easy way to keep those ports open!

Port Visors

After my post a couple of days ago about two different strategies for dealing with cooking heat when it’s hot out, Jan (my cookbook co-author) reminded me of another great way to improve your boat’s ventilation when in rainy areas:  Port Visors.

If you have opening ports, Port Visors will allow you to keep ports open in all but the nastiest squalls.  Admittedly, in nice conditions they will block some of the air flow so you have to balance how often they’ll improve the ventilation versus how often they’ll restrict it.  Port Visors might block some sailing splashes, but in most conditions you’ll want to close the ports when underway.

Port Visors are made of UV-resistant Lexan (i.e., basically unbreakable) and come in a variety of sizes and shapes to fit most common ports.  What I like about them is that there’s no metal to rust and they attach with adhesive so you’re not drilling holes that then have to be sealed.  The installation is fairly easy by boat standards — they come with step-by-step directions, but you can see the whole process in a post Jan wrote on her web site, CommuterCruiser.com.

The installation is permanent, so you’re not you’re going to be taking them off and putting them back on.  They are extremely tough and have been designed so that sheets and lines will slide off them without ripping them off the side of the boat.

They have a bronze tint to them and do shade the port holes — sort of like wearing sunglasses.  In other words, light still gets below but it’s not a harsh glare.

The company that makes and sells Port Visors is owned by a couple of life-long boaters, Bob and Paula Biles.  They have a reputation for excellent customer service.  Their web site gives all the technical details, measurements, photos and ordering info — check it out!

Here's an easy way to keep boat portholes open in the rain. DIY installation and sizes/colors to suit most boats.

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24 Comments
  • Chris Link
    Posted at 26 April 2013 Reply

    Love my Port Visors, we have had two for the past four years and purchased more to cover all my opening ports.They allow breeze in and can leave windows open for most rainy days.

  • Wendy
    Posted at 28 April 2013 Reply

    Absolutely love ours. We have two on each side and they came with Ohana when we boat her. My boats in the past didn’t have these and now I wouldn’t want to be without them.

  • Carolyn Fuller
    Posted at 02 May 2013 Reply

    Order mine just last week. Can’t wait to get them in and installed! Thanks for a link to Commuter Cruiser with the installation instructions. Will help tremendously.

  • Charles Taylor
    Posted at 30 September 2013 Reply

    We have a 1980 Trojan AFT cabin, F40, and at first I purchase 4 of these as a test to see if they were what they said, I was very IMPRESSED by the young lady who answer the phone and with her help, I ordered and in 3 days we had them, they where everything she said they were, about 8 months later we ordered 4 more and had to do a little modifying to the LADY STAR for them to work and have love them and would highly recommend them to everybody. BTW the young lady who was so kind and helpful is the owner’s wife and I thank her so much. We are full time live aboards.

  • The Boat Galley
    Posted at 30 September 2013 Reply

    Fantastic to hear others are loving them too, Charles!

  • Tony Talacko
    Posted at 02 October 2013 Reply

    Very cool! Does anyone know where to get round visors like these?

    • Carolyn Shearlock
      Posted at 03 October 2013 Reply

      They have them in several different styles and shapes. Give them a call and see if one will work for you!

      • Tony
        Posted at 03 October 2013 Reply

        I just got a response from them and they no longer make the round portvisors due to lack of demand. 🙁

        • Carolyn Shearlock
          Posted at 03 October 2013 Reply

          I’m sorry about that! They are the ONLY company that I know of making something like this. If you do find one that makes round ones, please let me know in case anyone else is looking for them.

        • Paula Biles
          Posted at 07 October 2014 Reply

          If you’re still here Tony, Seaworthy Goods is now offering their round PortVisor as a special order item. Give them a call or email.

  • Sherry Day
    Posted at 19 November 2013 Reply

    We added a port visor over the galley of our Hallberg-Rassy 46. I love that it keeps the rain and runoff out of my stove. I would suggest getting a size larger than the porthole as the radius of the corners may not match. I had to move it higher to accommodate for this issue. Fortunately it still extends out enough to work.

  • Kirsi Uotila
    Posted at 19 November 2013 Reply

    I have these and love them. I do have to close them if it is blowing, but it is nice to have ventilation.

  • Jim Allen
    Posted at 10 July 2015 Reply

    I got a couple to try, but the lay-back angle on my ()’Day 40 is so steep that the rain still comes in 🙁

  • Helen Bell
    Posted at 10 July 2015 Reply

    We will have to get some. We r fortunate to have air con that we can run without a gen set

  • Marc J. Kornutik
    Posted at 10 July 2015 Reply

    Six years experience on my last boat…. So far just installed one on the new boat but plan on putting them on every port eventually… They work perfectly !!!! The only problem is…. they’re not cheap.

  • Erin Jackson
    Posted at 11 July 2015 Reply

    My husband made some for our boat and they are mood savers for sure! Nothing worse than a hot, muggy sticky, boat for my attitude

  • David Hoch
    Posted at 11 July 2015 Reply

    Careful the jibsheets don’t snag on them…

  • Cindy Law Cairns
    Posted at 18 February 2016 Reply

    Because of all the recent publicity, they did have a huge backlog on orders for their popular size. But the customer support is awesome. They got it to our son in San Diego before he joined us in Mexico.

  • Richard Phillips
    Posted at 19 February 2016 Reply

    I wish the 13 inch was back in production.

  • The Tadlers
    Posted at 20 February 2016 Reply

    Loved ours, until we lost all 6 of them crossing the gulf stream one night. Funny thing was the 3m sticky stuff was still on the boat, meaning that the bonding to the Port Visor was the issue. Hmm. (No response from company when we asked about it ).

    • Paula
      Posted at 02 March 2016 Reply

      Sorry with your problem when crossing the Gulf Stream. If you didn’t hear back from Seaworthy Goods about your problem, please write us again. Occasionally emails don’t get through.

  • Dan T.
    Posted at 12 May 2016 Reply

    Bought’em, love’em, recommend’em. Easy installation over Atkins & Hoyle ports. Great for added ventilation in any weather for my Celestial 48 – A/C not required. Stick them once, but if you have to move them, tape can be replaced for re-installation. Great cross boarder service from Seaworthy to Canada. Enjoy.

  • Byron Rountree
    Posted at 12 May 2016 Reply

    I have nine on my Defever lost two on the bow in the Gulf of Mexico. Replaced them and screwed all nine down with stainless screws.

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