Boat lifts have a lot of advantages over using a trailer or tying your boat to a dock. When a boat is tied up in the water, ropes can come loose or waves can smash it into pilings. It is also a cleaner option. You won’t have to scrub and repaint the hull as often because it is not sitting in the water, exposed to saltwater, algae and barnacles.
When looking at boat lifts, it is important to have three key measurements. First, know how much the boat weighs when it is full of gas and gear. Also, record the length of your boat and the width from beam to beam. Finally, have an idea of the water depth surrounding the dock. This will fluctuate according to the tides, but a general measurement is recommended. Here are some common types of boat lifts and how each one operates.
Piling Mount Lift
Piling mount lifts are the most common types of boat lifts South Florida. These attach directly to a fixed dock, making it a good option for any water depth. They are especially popular in water with a sandy bottom. Because they aren’t supported from underneath, the dock must be strong enough to handle the extra weight. Often, extra pilings and support beams must first be added to the structure. Pilling mount lifts use electricity, so the dock will need to have power run to it.
Bottom Standing Lift
Bottom standing boat lifts have legs that support the boat from the ground, under the water’s surface. They are usually installed next to a dock. These are great for bodies of water that are two to nine feet deep. However, it is extremely important that the ground be firm and not sandy. If the supporting legs sink, the boat may become uneven and unstable. These lifts can be moved manually with a large wheel, using electric motors or with hydraulic pumps. They should be removed from the water in the winter.
Even if you don’t have a dock, you can still have a lift. Floating lifts are constructed of large metal or plastic chambers. When the chambers are filled with air, they rise and lift the boat out of the water. When you are ready to go out for a spin, water is pumped into the chambers, causing them to sink.
Floating lifts are commonly used in large marinas because they can be moved around easily. They are also perfect for those with floating docks.