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Buyers Guide & Information

Lifetime Kayak Reviews: Compared For Fishing & Water Sports

Our complete guide and Lifetime kayak reviews. Whether you are single or tandem, fishing or just out for a paddle, we have all the information you need.

by

Buyers Guide & Information

Lifetime Kayak Reviews: Compared For Fishing & Water Sports

Our complete guide and Lifetime kayak reviews. Whether you are single or tandem, fishing or just out for a paddle, we have all the information you need.

by PITeam

by PITeam

One of the most critical aspects that need to be considered for a kayak is the right brand. However, many different brands specialize in excellent kayaks for almost any purpose. Each brand has a specialty, while some create kayaks for every situation. Lifetime takes water sports and fishing to the next level with modern kayaks.

Lifetime is a brand with an excellent reputation. The brand has been around for a while, improving with the new technology that comes onto the market. In this article, we will take a more in-depth look at Lifetime Kayaks, by exploring the top kayaks and the special features. Now, you can decide for yourself if Lifetime is the brand for you.

Image

Product

Type

Body Type

Check Price

Lifetime Muskie Angler Sit-On-Top Kayak with...

Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak

Sit On Top

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

Lifetime Sport Fisher Single or Tandem Kayak, 10...

Lifetime Two Person Tandem Fishing Kayak

Sit On Top

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak with Paddle, Blue,...

Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak

Sit On Top

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

Lifetime 90118 Manta Tandem Sit on Top Kayak with...

Lifetime Two Person Tandem Sit-on Kayak

Sit On Top

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak with Paddle, 6 Feet,...

Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak

Sit On Top

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

A Brief Overview of The Lifetime Kayak:

Lifetime Kayaks is part of the larger Lifetime Products Company. Founded in 1986, it started with founder Barry Mower selling sturdy basketball poles from his garage. The main goal of the company was to make existing sporting goods more durable, but using better materials than was initially used back in the 1970s.

The development of their kayak started in May of 2010 when Lifetime obtained the assets of the sinking Dragonfly Innovation Corp. The company was known for producing blow-molded kayaks. However, in November of 2011, Lifetime acquired the brand Emotion Kayaks as well. The combination of these assets has transformed Lifetime into the largest manufacturer of kayaks in the world.


Why Choose Lifetime Kayaks?

Lifetime kayaks don’t differ that much from the other affordable brands. The kayaks feature a polyethylene construction for all of their kayaks. Not only are lifetime kayaks durable, but there are a couple of other top features that Lifetime has, which makes them the perfect brand to consider:

UV-Protected High-Density Polyethylene

All Lifetime Kayaks are made from the same high-density polyethylene. However, the plastic is also protected by a UV coating that emphasizes the durability of the product. The UV coating will not only protect the kayak from longer hours out on the water, but it prevents the build-up of rust on any of the metal components as well.

Flush Mounted Fishing Rod Holders

One of the leading fishing kayaks brands must have decent rod holders. Lifetime specializes in creating rod holders that are close to the user. They might have numerous rod holders on the kayak, but the design is to ensure lines never cross. In tandem fishing kayaks, it makes it possible for everyone to use the kayak.

Front and Rear Shock Cord Straps

Lifetime has never disappointed when it comes to storage space. However, the shock or elastic cords mounted on either the front or back provides additional storage space. The extra storage space is what helps you when you need to store a tackle box or any gear. These can also be removed in a situation where you might need cords.

Two 6″ Storage Compartments in Rear and Center

The copious amounts of storage space are what we just touched upon with the brand. However, you have sealed latches as well. Most of these sealed latches are entirely waterproof and have a size of 6-inches. The elite Lifetime Kayaks have two storage compartments to help ensure that all your essential gear is safe.

5-Year Limited Warranty

The warranty is not something that everyone pays much attention to. However, you should consider making it a priority when you deal with kayaks. Lifetime Kayaks have a standard 5-year limited warranty that covers almost every damage. Excellent customer service will ensure that you get the right help when needed.


Choosing the Best Lifetime Kayak

Not all kayaks or kayak brands might be the same, but there are a few important considerations one needs to make to ensure they get the best value for your money. We have identified six important elements that you need to consider. These elements will ensure that you get the best value for your money:

1. Where Do You Like to Go Kayaking?

Lifetime specializes in recreational kayaks and fishing kayaks. Most of their kayaks are made from the same basic materials, but the brand changes up the features located on the kayak itself. Here are the two considerations to the keep in mind when you are choosing your next Lifetime Kayak:

  • Calm Waters:
    Lifetime Kayaks are created mostly for calm waters. The kayaks have a polyethylene design that does not do well against rocks but can spend long hours out in the sun. For calm waters, you can choose any one of their recreational kayaks, including some of the top tandem kayaks that are available on the market today.
  • Fishing in Lakes and Rivers:
    The other area that Lifetime is quite the specialist in is fishing. Their fishing kayaks make it possible to enjoy a day out on the calm river or lake. However, it is recommended that you try to stick to these more relaxed water bodies. The fishing kayaks have multiple accessories that make your life easier when reeling in your next big catch.

2. Sitting Inside or Sitting on Top

Much like the other top brands, Lifetime also gives you the option of a kayak that enables you to sit inside or on top. Both of them have specific purposes that will make your life easier in certain situations. The Sit-Inside Kayak has limited functionality, but you can generate more speed. These kayaks work best for touring purposes.

If you like fishing or you want to move around on the kayak, you need the Sit-On-Top Kayak. It is often wider than its counterpart to give you more stability. Since you might need to move to your storage hatches or you want to reel in a fish, you will need to look for a kayak that enables you to sit on top.

3. Which Length Are You Comfortable With?

The length of the kayak can indicate many things. A longer kayak is generally slimmer and allows it to attain faster speeds. However, turning can be more daunting for many beginners. Alternatively, you might consider a shorter kayak that is a little wider. The extra width is perfect for moving around, and it offers more stability.

The length is also an important thing to look for when you consider storage. If the kayak is too long, you might need a trailer for transport. However, a shorter kayak might fit in the back of your pickup truck or on the roof of your car. 10-feet is the average that you should consider playing with until you need something longer.

4.The Weight of The Kayak Is Important

The weight of any kayak is important for several reasons, like transportation and maneuverability. However, when we look at Lifetime, you will see that the kayaks all have the same construction. The blown polyethylene is the same for each kayak. However, longer kayaks can be a little bit heavier.

5.Which Extra Features Are Important to You?

If we draw a comparison to other brands, Lifetime Kayaks are littered with the most accessories of any kayak brand on the market today. However, you need to decide if you need additional storage space or things like rod holders. Having a rudder to help you control the movement of the kayak is also really important for many beginners.

The most essential accessories that we would encourage you to look for is the storage space. One can never have enough storage space for their kayaks. If possible, you would want a decent amount of cord for added storage. However, handles on the side of the kayak to make transportation easier can help you a lot.

6.What Price Can You Afford?

One of the best things about Lifetime Kayaks is the price. These kayaks never exceed a specific price, and you don't need to worry about an excessive price tag. The only difference will be the more expensive fishing kayaks. However, a longer tandem kayak can also set you back a couple of bucks more than one for your kids.


5 Best Lifetime Kayaks Reviewed

You might know exactly how to choose a good kayak by now, but Lifetime is the biggest manufacturer of kayaks in the world. Due to this, they have many different kayaks available, which might make choosing one hard. Fortunately, we have reviewed 5 of their top options that you can use for fishing or recreational purposes:

1. Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak

Best Lifetime Fishing Kayak

Weight of Unit

56.5 lbs.

Type

Sit On Top

Length

10-Feet

Width

31-inches

Max Load Capacity

275 lbs.

Body Type

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

The Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak is probably one of the most popular fishing kayaks on the market today. Made from the same high-density polyethylene as many of there others, it features a UV-coated surface for protection from the sun. The kayak is 10-feet long, with a width of 31-inches for stability.

Stability chine rails are part of the construction, making it especially great for fishing with the added stability. It has two 6-inch storage compartments and cords at the back and front for additional storage. In total, the kayak has 3-rod holders, with two mounted on either side and one installed in the front for easy access.

Since it is one of the popular kayaks, the price is a little steep. However, Lifetime features a limited 5-year warranty with all of its top kayaks. Those with a little extra cash to burn can buy the Lifetime 90806 Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak (2-Pack Option). However, it is no secret that all the elements on the kayak make it the best Lifetime fishing kayak.

Pros

  • Feature stability chine rails
  • A complete package of fishing accessories
  • Multiple storage compartments
  • Durable outer construction
  • 2 carry handles for easy transportation

Cons

  • The hatches lead to the entire bottom of the hull

2. Lifetime Two Person Tandem Fishing Kayak

Best Tandem Lifetime Fishing Kayak

Weight of Unit

60 lbs.

Type

Sit On Top

Length

10-Feet

Width

36-inches

Max Load Capacity

500 lbs.

Body Type

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

The best tandem Lifetime fishing kayak differs slightly from the features that the other kayaks have. It is also 10-feet and made from incredibly durable materials, but only has one 6-inch storage hatch to use as the back. The blow-molded polyethylene is UV-coated for superior durability against the weather conditions.

The unit can seat up to 3 people, and it features a massive weight capacity of 500-pounds in total weight. The two standard seats that you receive with the purchase are ergonomic, and they have adjustable backrests for even more comfort. With paddle holders and numerous footrest positions, it is not hard to see how versatile it is.

The Lifetime Two Person Tandem Fishing Kayak is made for fishing with only one rod, and it does not have any rod holders that you can use. However, the shallow hull and stability chine rails allow you to move about as you please. Much like the other Lifetime Kayaks, you are protected by the limited 5-year warranty.

Pros

  • Hold 500-pounds
  • Seats 3 people comfortably
  • Wide base for added stability
  • UV protected hull
  • 5-year limited warranty

Cons

  • No rod holders

3. Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak

Best Sit-On-Top Model

Weight of Unit

37.9 lbs.

Type

Sit On Top

Length

8-Feet

Width

30-inches

Max Load Capacity

250 lbs.

Body Type

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

The Lotus is one of the most common recreational and versatile kayaks on the market today. It is an 8-foot kayak, made from durable polyethylene and UV coated to enhance the overall durability. The kayak comes with adjustable footrests, but the top feature is the adjustable seat. It is designed with an ergonomic touch for more comfort.

At the back of the unit, there are storage cords in place. While you don't have a dedicated compartment for storage, the bungee cords offer superior strength to hold all your personal belongings intact. The entire kayak is only 38-pounds, making it lightweight, and with carry handles, transportation is that much easier to the water and back.

Since it is one of the smaller kayaks, you can expect a more affordable price. Fortunately, you won't need to spend your entire month's salary to enjoy a day out on the water. The limited 5-year warranty is also in play for peace of mind. The Lifetime Lotus Sit-On-Top Kayak is one of the top options for beginners and the best sit-on-top model.

Pros

  • Lightweight and durable
  • Adjustable backrest
  • Bungee cords for storage
  • Easy to transport
  • Affordable

Cons

  • No dedicated storage compartments

4. Lifetime Two Person Tandem Sit-on Kayak

Best Tandem Recreational Model

Weight of Unit

60 lbs.

Type

Sit On Top

Length

10-Feet

Width

36-inches

Max Load Capacity

500 lbs.

Body Type

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

At first glance, the Lifetime Two Person Tandem Sit-on Kayak might look like the previous Lifetime fishing kayak we reviewed. However, it is a little different, and the color combinations are not ideal for fishing. At 10-feet, it is the perfect length for the best tandem recreational model and the adjustable backrest gives you more comfort.

The same high-density polyethylene forms the hull of the kayak, and it has an incredible weight capacity of 500-pounds. It might not have a storage compartment, but a small area at the front of the kayak is ideal for storing some possessions. The paddles make the most significant difference with their sporty shape and design.

Compared to the fishing kayaks, it is a little more affordable, which makes it an excellent option for recreational kayakers. The wide design and stability chine rails still add stability if you want to use it for fishing. However, the colors are bright and might not be the best for fishing. It is recommended as a top recreational kayak.

Pros

  • Adjustable seating
  • Durable hull with stability chine rails
  • Easy to transport
  • Bright and colorful

Cons

  • Lacks elite accessories

5. Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak

Best Kids Lifetime Kayak

Weight of Unit

18 lbs.

Type

Sit On Top

Length

6-Feet

Width

24-inches

Max Load Capacity

130 lbs.

Body Type

Blow-Molded Polyethylene

Lifetime is the brand that caters to everyone in the family. The Lifetime Youth Wave Kayak is one of the top kid's kayaks on the market today. Not only is it made from the same quality materials as the adult kayaks, but it comes with stability chine rails. It is smaller at 6-feet, but still has a decent cockpit for smaller kids to enjoy.

The unit is available in unique colors that might be appealing to the youth. It can hold 130-pounds with relative ease and looks like a decent kayak when placed next to the top models on the list. At only 18-pounds, even small children can move it around or pick it up. The kayak should fit inside the trunk of most cars.

Lifetime has made the Youth Wave Kayak perfect for children by also making it affordable for adults. Your kid will receive a paddle to help them get into using the kayak. Lifetime has thrown in the same 5-year limited warranty that has made many of their other kayaks so popular. Keep in mind; the kids can also play with it in the pool.

Pros

  • Aesthetically pleasing to kids
  • Comes with a paddle and comfortable seat
  • Affordable
  • 5-year limited warranty

Cons

  • Kids tend to outgrow it quickly

How Does Lifetime Compare to The Other Elite Brands?

There are so many different brands that we can use to compare to Lifetime, but only a few of them are worth looking at. Since Lifetime is the largest manufacturer of commercial kayaks, we only took brands with a similar production level. Here are some of the top brands that closely compare to Lifetime Kayaks:

Pelican Kayaks:

Pelican is well known for producing top quality kayaks that are made from polyethylene. Pelican kayaks and Lifetime Kayaks have many similarities. However, Lifetime is slightly better when it comes to fishing kayaks for recreational and tandem kayaks; you might consider some of the top Pelican Kayaks available.

Intex Kayaks:

Much like Lifetime, Intex has the capabilities of mass-producing kayaks. However, they specialize in making portable kayaks. Most of the Pelican kayaks are for recreational use and the need to be inflated. While Intex might be much cheaper, their kayaks lack the durability and the longevity of the top Lifetime Kayaks.

Sun Dolphin:

Sun Dolphin was founded in the same era as Pelican Kayaks, but they have been producing kayaks for a longer time. Sun Dolphin specializes in rotomolded kayaks that only have one piece. The prices are slightly lower, and they are one of the leaders in the industry of technology, using experts to help develop new models.

Vibe Kayaks:

Vibe Kayaks compete with Lifetime when it comes to price. However, their kayaks seem to be a little more durable when it comes to bumps and minor collisions. Unfortunately, Vibe does not design high-end kayaks that can compete on an aesthetic level. However, Vibe is one of the brands that should be on your watch list.

Sevylor:

Sevylor is one of the oldest brands, with a 65-year reign as one of the leading designers of kayaks. Once they moved onto the polyethylene kayaks, the brand focused on durability and quality. However, they are very similar to Lifetime in these aspects. The biggest difference is the price of Sevylor, which might be a little too expensive.


Essential Accessories to Help Your Lifetime Kayak Flourish:

Most kayaks designed by Lifetime come with all the accessories you will need. However, many kayakers want the full experience and get the best value for money. There are multitudes of different accessories that one can add to a Lifetime Kayak. These accessories can help to make the kayak perform better and work much more efficiently:

  • Paddles:
    The need for paddles is not important to Lifetime kayaks, as they all come with a paddle included. However, not all paddles are of the same quality. The SeaSense Kayak Paddle is a performance paddle with shaped blades to generate more thrust and speed.
  • Anchor Trolleys:
    When fishing, you need to stop, and often your kayak will keep drifting along with the current. While the chine rails keep you afloat, the anchor trolley can keep you from drifting away. The Best Marine Kayak Anchor is one of the most versatile anchor trolley kits.
  • Paddle Holders:
    Paddle holders are a staple in most Lifetime Kayaks. However, the paddle holders mostly work with the paddles you receive. If you upgrade your paddles, you might want a universal paddle holder kit like the Yakclips Patented Clip-On Removable Kayak Paddle Holder.
  • Rudders:
    Specific Lifetime Kayak Parts can be daunting to find. However, these kayaks are generally easy to steer. If you want to improve the functionality of the kayak, you can add a rudder. The Borogo Kayak Rudder is one of the best universal rudder components we always try to recommend.
  • Life Vest (PFD): 
    When you go out on the water on any kayak, safety is an integral part of the job. The life vest needs to be approved by the right organizations, but a good life vest can save your life. If you like fishing, the Old Town Lure Angler Men's Life Jacket has numerous storage pockets and a lot of versatility.
  • Cockpit Cover:
    The UV protective coating can go a long way to protect your kayak. However, the combination of rain and sun will eventually wear down even the most durable of materials. The Seals Cockpit Seal Cover is one of the best cockpit covers that work on any kayak type or brand.
  • Repair Kit/Patch Kit:
    One might think that only the inflatable kayaks need to be patched and repaired. However, a polyethylene kayak can also take damage, and once your warranty expires, you need to fix this. A good welding gun like the Hot Blast Torch Overlap Air Welding Gun can generate enough heat safely to repair dents and damages.

Kayaking Safety Tips

One of the worst things that can happen to you is capsizing or tipping the kayak. However, it can be avoided when you take the necessary precautions. There are a couple of essential things to understand when kayaking to ensure that you don’t become a victim of a kayak that tips over and what to do when it happens:


Lifetime Kayak Care & Maintenance

Not all kayaks are the same, but they all need some love and care. When you have a kayak, it is your responsibility to take care of it and make sure that it works. A clean and cared for kayak will keep you safe and last longer. There are a few things that you can keep in mind when you care for your kayak and maintain it.

  • Indoor storage is vital to avoid damage
  • Store it horizontally on a crossbar or upside down
  • Keep it clean
  • Check and fix any dents you see immediately
  • The seats can do with a proper washing now and again
  • Reapply the UV coating as indicated in the manual
  • Only use the kayak for its intended purpose

Frequently Asked Questions

Lifetime Kayaks are straightforward compared to many other brands. However, there might be a few things you still have on your mind. To ensure that you make the right decision with your new Lifetime kayak, we have done some digging to find the answers to the most common questions. Now, you can also be an expert on Lifetime Kayaks:

How much weight can a Lifetime kayak hold?

The average weight is around 300-pounds for almost any Lifetime Kayak. The ranges are generally 130-500 pounds, with the lightest weight capacity being mostly for kids’ kayaks.

Can I replace or upgrade my Lifetime kayak seat?

The seat on almost any kayak can be replaced, and you can upgrade it to something more ergonomic. It can be done at home, and you don't need to have professional assistance for the job.

Do all Lifetime Kayaks come with warranties?

There might be a hidden model or two that does not carry the same warranty, but almost every Lifetime Kayak we came across has a 5-year limited warranty. However, the warranty does not apply if you buy a used kayak.

Where is a good place to buy Lifetime Kayaks online?

Amazon gives you the most extensive selection of Lifetime products, and you can find almost any Lifetime Kayak model online. You might need to look at the prices, but most Lifetime Kayaks command the same price no matter where you buy it. However, Amazon has many discounts on products.

Where can I purchase Lifetime replacement parts?

Amazon is still the best place to buy the replacement parts. However, you might need to get in contact with the customer support if your kayak is still under the original warranty. The customer support is helpful and easy to deal with.

Do Lifetime kayaks tip over easily?

No, most Lifetime kayaks have a wide hull, and the multi-chine rails provide additional stability on the sides. The low hull will keep it from catching the waves. However, Lifetime Kayaks are not made for the ocean or coastline, and you might run the risk of capsizing.


Conclusion

If you need a brand that stands by their products and gives you exceptional durability, it is hard to find something better than Lifetime. The brand specializes in top of the range kayaks, and they offer extended warranties that cover almost everything. It is one of the brands we recommend for anglers and recreational kayakers.

The Lifetime Tamarack Angler 100 Fishing Kayak is by far one of their most popular kayaks, and it can be used for fishing or recreational purposes. If you are new to the brand, the Tamarack 100 will be the best option to consider.

Images from:
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