Top 5 Maintenance Tips for a Safe and Clean Boat Dock
If you own a boat dock it is easy to take it for granted. All your attention is directed towards your boat, with a little leftover for that important construction that sees you, family and friends, safely in and out of the vessel.
Because let’s face it, a boat dock does get a battering over the years. Open to the elements and low on our list of priorities, it is a wonder they go on working for as long as they do.
However, it is important to maintaining a safe and clean boat dock. Not only will this ensure that it lasts longer, but a little TLC will also ensure that everything remains safe and reliable for years to come.
So if you are ready, here are 5 essential tips to keeping your boat dock in tip-top condition.
1. Clean thoroughly once a month
Cleaning your dock once a month may seem excessive, however, the fact you own one, we must assume that it gets regular use.
Imagine how satisfying it would be to start your boating day disembarking from a lovely pristine dock.
For this, you should consider investing in a pressure washer. Another alternative is to periodically employ a professional to pressure wash the dock down.
Doing so will help reduce any build-up of algae and mold that in turn reduces the emergence of rot.
It is also recommended that you have the dock sanded down once or twice a year. This will help prevent unwanted splinters from ruining the day of you or your guests.
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2. Take photographs so you can compare the dock’s condition
Another good tip and can be done alongside the monthly pressure wash is to take a few snaps of the dock with your phone.
Compare the new pictures with those from the past. This will help you gauge whether areas of the dock surface or supports are deteriorating faster than they should be.
The images will help bring your attention to anything that might need addressing. You will also be able to see to any issues before they become serious.
3. Periodically reseal and repaint
Depending on your skill set and available time, you or an employed professional should reseal and/or repaint the deck every few years.
Applying a natural sealer will help protect the wood against the elements and decay, while also making it look a lot more aesthetically pleasing.
If the dock utilizes steel components and supports these should also be maintained. Sand, prime, and paint rust spots to ensure the future integrity of the structure.
4. Protect the sides and outer edges
To help prevent knocks and bumps to both your dock and the boat, you should have rubber bumpers or old tires attached to the sides, corners, and outer edges.
This will reduce any damage caused by impacts, and will also prove valuable if any learner boatsman takes the helm.
5. Keep safety in mind
Finally, you need to keep safety issues at the forefront of your mind.
What is your dock primarily used for? Will you and your family be sunbathing, swimming, or fishing from it? Maybe it’s all three.
It may even be large enough for entertaining and BBQs, (if so luck you). Either way, the condition of the dock needs to be suitable for that intended use.
For instance, a slippery, fish-scaled surface would not be safe if you intend to entertain a number of guests there.
Furthermore, a dock without a suitable dock ladder is dangerous and inconvenient should parties want to dive and swim from it.
Fishing and boating gear should also be removed when not in use. These can become dangerous obstacles, or at the very least, unintentionally end up in the water if too many people are around.
A life ring should also be mounted on or near the dock in case of an emergency.
And there you have it, 5 simple enough tips to follow to ensure that your boat dock stays safe and well maintained for many years of use.