Boat Storage Basics : A Complete Guide - hiseadock
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Boat Storage Basics

October 26, 2020
Man works in a boat shed
Source: Pexels

There is nothing quite like the adventure of being out in the water experiencing nature in all its might and glory. Be it fishing, sailing, or thrilling exploits like kayaking, you are bound to return from your excursion feeling refreshed. Speaking of returning, how have you been storing your boat after use? Do you leave it out in the water or haul it out?

How you store your boat is a fundamental aspect of boat ownership. The right storage can save you thousands in maintenance and repair costs. It can also help you get longer service out of your boat.

So, let’s dig into some important basics of boat storage.

Table of Contents

Dry Vs. Wet Storage

Boats parked at a marina
Source: Pexels

As the name suggests, dry storage involves keeping your boat away from water bodies when it is not in use. You would need a trailer to haul and tow your boat to your desired storage location. Alternatively, if you hire a dry boat storage service, they will likely help you with the towing. It’s pretty much like a valet but for boats.

Wet storage is when you simply leave your boat bobbing on the water. It is ideal for layovers between trips but some boat owners opt for this method for long durations too. Marinas rent out wet slips for this kind of storage. The rates depend on the location, size of your boat, and the duration you intend to keep it there.

Reasons Why You should Dry Dock

Barnacles underneath a boat
Source: Pinterest

Boats are made to take to the water with ease and grace. However, live water is an entire ecosystem unto itself. Plants and aquatic creatures thrive in it. As such when a boat sits in water too long, you may notice damage such as:

Algae on the hull

Barnacle build up on the bottom of the boat

Peeling paint

Surface corrosion, especially in saline water

Moreover, keeping your vessel in open water leaves it vulnerable to weather events like hurricanes and storms. Security in a crowded marina or even the lack of space may equally present additional wet storage challenges. In light of these issues, it may be best to choose dry storage for your boat.

What are Your Dry Docking Options?

In the past, boat sheds were the holy grail of dry boat storage. While they are still a solid choice there are now other options you could choose from including:

Dry stack boat storage
Source: Pinterest

Dry Stack Facilities

Dry stack facilities are large warehouse-like buildings with sections divided to accommodate boats. They are designed in different sizes to store a variety of boat types. These facilities provide additional support services like collecting your vessel from the water. You will need the staff to also fetch it for you from the stack when you plan to use it.

Boat Lifts

Boat lifts use an elevation mechanism to keep the boat off the water. You begin by lowering the base of the lift then you drive your vessel onto it. Once the boat is situated, you can prompt the lift to rise above the water level.

A boat elevated on a boat lift
Source: Pinterest
Drive-on boat dock

Drive-on Boat Docks

Drive-on boat docks float on the water surface and all you have to do is steer your boat onto them. Launching your boat is equally easy as you would simply drive off of the dock. In essence, they are a hustle-free dry parking spot in the water. They are suitable waterfront solution for both residential and commercial settings.

Why Drive-on Boat Docks Are the Superior Choice

Boat drive on floating dock

You would probably agree that the more convenient a storage method, the better. Well, it does not get more convenient than drive-on boat docks. Once they are installed, all you have to do is drive your boat onto them. You no longer need to pay to get your boat hauled out of the water or risk scuffs on it during transportation. Other benefits you could enjoy from this type of dock include:

Multiple Functions

A drive-on dock is a gift that keeps on giving. It can be used to dock your boat, as a fishing platform, and also as a floating walkway. You would only need to get a sufficient size installed so that you have room for other uses apart from boat storage.

Safety and Durability

Quality drive-on docks are made of HDPE material that handles strong currents and the vagaries of weather without getting damaged. The floating components of these docks are also smooth and would not be abrasive against your boat’s exterior. Plus, they rise with the water levels so you never have to worry about finding your drive-on dock submerged.

Aesthetics

Most docks lose their appeal after a while due to continuous exposure to the sun and also due to water damage. However, drive-on docks are UV resistant and thus do not fade. Whichever color you choose will remain vibrant and make your waterfront property eye-catching.

Affordability

The cherry on top is that drive-on docks from reputable brands are affordable and will last you years. They require little to no maintenance so there are no hidden costs. Even the installation is straightforward and you can easily do it yourself as opposed to hiring help.

Conclusion

Safety, convenience, durability, and affordability are a few of the factors you may have to weigh when choosing a boat storage solution. Ordinarily, it would be difficult to get all those qualities in one option but modern innovations have now come to the rescue. Spare no expense in storing your boat the right way. It is much cheaper than repairing damage or worse, having to replace it entirely.

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