Why is it so hard to get cell service in your cabin cruiser?

Folks, I understand the idea of a “first world problem.” There are definitely some things in life that just aren’t as heartbreaking to hear about as other things. But this isn’t a political blog, and this isn’t the right place to delve deeper. This is a place where we talk about the stuff that our Solid Signal fans want to know.

To that end, let’s talk about cell service in the cabins of small yachts. Cabin cruisers are within reach of a lot of middle class folks, and they’re a popular way to enjoy yourself over the weekend. This sort of boat rarely travels more than a few miles offshore and hardly ever stays out more than a day or two. Unlike larger craft, the owners of this sort of boat don’t generally consider things like satellite TV or satellite internet. They’re just happy to get a little bit of sunshine.

When the evening comes…

After sunset, you and “the fam” might settle in for the night, and enjoy a bit of rest before setting back for home the next day. That’s all well and good, but as you lay down, you’re probably struck with the urge to check your phone. Since you’re never too far from shore, you assume that your phone will keep working. It does, when you’re on deck. But when you’re down below, you’ll get no service, or slow data at best. Of course the goal of getting on the boat is just to get away from it all, but do you really want to get away from all of it? If you’ve ever awakened in the middle of the night with a desire to check your home security camera or text a friend, you know what I mean.

Here’s why it happens

It turns out that your boat is incredibly good at blocking cell signals. Practically every material in it will make fairly weak cell phone signals bounce back or scatter. Hardwood decking is high in iron, especially the redder woods. Varnish reflects signals back just as it reflects light. Fiberglass scatters signals as they try to pass through fibers. Metal framing blocks signals incredibly effectively, and the wiring conduits that keep your electrical system dry are just as much of a problem as metal framing. Even porthole glass is better at stopping signals than regular window glass. To make a fairly apt comparison, it’s a perfect storm for blocking cell phone signals.

What’s the solution?

Luckily, there’s a solution for bad cell service indoors, whether it’s on a boat, at home, or at work. Cell phone signal boosters take signal from outside, amplify it massively, and pump it throughout the inside. They generally cost less than one premium phone, last 5-10 years, and will work with 8 or more devices at the same time. Some of them even work with unlimited devices!

There’s a secret to getting the cell booster you need for your boat. You’ll need to call the experts at Solid Signal. We can recommend the right combination of cell booster and antenna for your particular vessel. Don’t just trust a bot on the internet… get free advice from a team with decades of experience. Call us now at 888-233-7563 and we’ll help you anytime during East Coast business hours. If it’s after hours, fill out the form below and we’ll get back to you, usually within one business day.

About the Author

Stuart Sweet
Stuart Sweet is the editor-in-chief of The Solid Signal Blog and a "master plumber" at Signal Group, LLC. He is the author of over 8,000 articles and longform tutorials including many posted here. Reach him by clicking on "Contact the Editor" at the bottom of this page.