Posted on May 19, 2022
Unassuming but effective: your boat lift is what keeps your boat safe and conveniently next to the water. It saves you from major repairs and maintenance costs on your boat while taking on the brunt of what the elements throw at it. You won’t be able to avoid maintenance on your boat lift altogether. However, you can extend its life and the time in between significant repairs by taking proper care of your boat lift. These five factors will contribute to the life of your boat lift, for better or worse.
All boat lifts are designed to work under specific conditions. Staying within those limits is crucial to the lifespan of your boat lift and the safety of your boat, as well as the safety of the people on your boat and dock. Lifting a boat with an incompatible hull design can cause damage, not to mention trying to lift it beyond a boat lift’s capacity. Don’t add more weight to your boat while it’s on the lift. Always, remove the plug while it’s on the hoist. And ensure proper weight distribution. If you want to add capacity to your boat lift, consult your dealer before making any changes.
There’s no shame in needing to learn how to do something, significantly when that something will save you money and stress. Make sure that you know your boat and your boat lift well before you use it. Even if you’re not a professional installer or maintenance person, you should do your homework and know what to look for in terms of damage. You should also know how your boat lift works and under what conditions.
Proper and frequent cleaning is essential for your boat lift. While an aluminum boat dock can get away with a pressure wash once in a while, your boat lift requires a little more TLC. Do a thorough inspection of the fasteners, hardware, bolts, and other components to ensure that everything is in its place and working properly. If anything is missing or damaged, fix it immediately to avoid further damage and safety hazards. Lubricate cables with penetrating oil instead of grease.
Your boat lift is constantly exposed to the water, and while it’s designed to be there, the water can still cause a great deal of damage. Rust is a big threat to most metals, and many metals that stay wet for a long time will rust and shorten your boat’s lifespan. This includes metal cables, beams, cradles, and gearboxes. If your boat lift is in saltwater, corrosion can happen faster as well.
Whether you’re putting it in the water once or taking it out seasonally, your boat lift needs to be installed properly to work. That means being installed in the correct water depth with components that are installed properly and in good working order, along with a thorough inspection before the boat lift goes into the water. If you’re uncomfortable DIYing your installation, your local boat lift dealer can help. Contact HydroHoist for personalized help with waterfront products, including boat lifts for all waterfronts, boat lift accessories, and installation assistance.