If you own a waterfront property, a dock is indispensable. It provides access to your home via the water and also allows you to take part in recreational activities such as fishing.
However, it can be a major undertaking given the costs involved as well as the possible construction that comes with installation. As such, thinking of investing in a new dock may seem like a weighty decision. Still, it is something you may want to consider more keenly due to reasons discussed below.
The appeal of owning a boat is often all the possibilities of fun and leisurely excursions. If you end up having to fix your deck every other weekend, it completely defeats the purpose. It not only denies you the comfort to go about your activities, but it will likely also cost you lots of money. At the end of the day, it is a raw deal all around.
Getting a new dock that is low-maintenance would certainly be the way to go. Wood, for example, is quite popular but is prone to rot and structural weaknesses. In its place, you could opt for docks made of durable materials like high-density polyethylene. It is sturdy and weather-resistant hence you would hardly ever have to worry about frequent repairs.
Due to climatic changes, the water levels of most water bodies across the world are rising. Storms and hurricanes are equally occurring more frequently and with increasing intensity. If your dock is not adaptable to these changes, it may be time to change it.
Consider investing in a dock that can adjust to water levels and conveniently accommodate your boat. A drive-on boat dock, for example, floats on the water and rises along with it. The floating components are made of HDPE which is eco-friendly and resilient against weather elements. It is also simple to use as you only need to drive your boat onto it. No lifts or other complex mechanisms are required.
Adjoining structures on your property such as a dock play a key aesthetic role. They can either add or diminish its curb appeal and by extension, its commercial value. It is therefore advisable to replace your dock with a new one when your current one becomes unsightly. Besides, there’s only so many times that you can remedy disrepair with paint.
In the past, dock manufacturers focused more on functionality and less about their appearance. Fortunately, due to modern innovation, you can now enjoy the best of both. Some dock companies provide customization services that give you a say on what your new dock will look like. You can get distinct colors, for example, that make your property stand out. You could also choose the shape of the dock components or the size and height of the dock to your preference.
Structures suffer wear and tear after long durations of use. Take, for instance, a wooden piling dock. It could be made using treated wood to avoid rot but may still be weakened by strong water currents. This would compromise the dock’s structural safety. Other risk factors include:
It is imperative that your dock is dependable to avoid accidents. To this end, make an effort to have it professionally inspected regularly. If you happen to notice any safety issues, it is best to address them swiftly. For structural and installation issues, repairs may be futile and you would be better off replacing the unit.
A bigger boat or sharing your dock with adjacent properties may make the size of your current dock inadequate. You would either need to extend it or shop for a larger one. That said, extending most docks may not be ideal as the final structure may lack uniformity and affect safety.
However, floating docks are easy to extend as they do not structurally extend into the water. If you had one installed, you would only need to extend it should your needs change again in the future. You could also just as easily reduce the size of it by taking out some of the floating components. You would be hard-pressed to find another type of dock that offers you that kind of flexibility.
Keeping your boat in the water is convenient during times when you use it often. On the other hand, if you are not venturing out into the water frequently, dry storage is highly recommended. Leaving your boat sitting in the water for too long may result in water damage, mold, and mildew as well as corrosion.
There are several options you could use for dry boat storage including boat sheds, boat lifts, and drive-on docks. The premise behind them is to keep the vessel off the water but they each work differently. Using a boat shed would require you to trail the boat from the water and have sufficient room to store it. A boat lift elevates the boat off the water but the storage and launching processes are rather complicated.
Drive-on boat docks are arguably the most convenient to use. When it comes to docks, no other type will offer you the kind of functional duality that they provide. They are both a dock and a dry storage space. Moreover, parking and launching your boat is as easy as parking and pulling out a car on dry land.
Knowing when to replace your dock can be a tricky decision but it is of utmost importance. Faults, even those you consider negligible, could be hazardous and have tragic consequences. The replacement may seem cumbersome but remember that getting a new dock is a long-term solution. The years of service you will get out of it will make it worth your while. If you are ever in doubt, consult an expert for some guidance so that you can make an informed decision.
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