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When to Replace Or Repair Your Boat Lift

by Scott Myers

As a waterfront property owner, protecting your valuable possessions from damage  is paramount, and that is where a boat lift comes in handy. Besides caring for your boats and other water-crafts, it’s crucial to maintain your boat lift and know when to repair or replace parts. Here are some of the signs that indicate that your boat lift is ready for repairs or replacement.

Related Blog: Golden Boat Lifts: Top 10 Maintenance Tips


Malfunctioning Controls

If the remotes that regulate up-and-down movements, switches, and harnesses that are part of your boat lift are not working correctly, they may cause damage to such installation and your watercraft as well. For instance, rusty circuit contacts and electrical faults can cause a boat lift to malfunction by raising your water vessel too high, and in that case, regular visual inspection, proper use, and exercising caution when operating the boat lift, will keep it in good condition for an extended period.


A faulty remote control, on the other hand, will compromise the functioning of your boat lift motor, and rewiring the same will be necessary.



Steel may be a popular choice for constructing boat lifts, but it is prone to rust. If you notice rust forming on your boat lift early enough, you can grind it, and better still, you can ask your contractor to apply paint or a protective sealant as a mitigation approach against more damage. 


Aluminum is more resistant to rust, and for that reason, you should consider replacing your old or corroded steel boat lift with the former.


Worn Out Cables

First and foremost, cables are the lifeblood of any boat lift because they lift the rack assembly and bear the entire weight of your watercraft. Since boat lifts have galvanized steel or stainless steel cables, they are prone to rust, and a faulty drum winding, overloading, misalignment, and inadequate tension can cause the cables to wear out as well.


It is needless to say that boat lift cables will wear and tear as a result of the up-and-down movements, which implies that periodic maintenance is critical because it helps you take prompt action when the replacement of such cables is necessary.


A Faulty Motor

Typical motor problems for boat lifts include a defective up-button, faulty wiring in the motor, a motor with an incorrect amount of voltage, faulty fuses, among others. If the motor on your boat lift is malfunctioning, it will only turn on manually, fails to lower your watercraft into the water, or vice versa, and sometimes, it may not start, or it stays on.


Engaging a marine technician if your boat lift motor is faulty is advisable because unless the latter requires replacement, an expert can fix the problem and get your lift running efficiently once again.


Sinking Piles

Your boat lift should remain on a steady surface to function accordingly, and that is why the condition of the piling it sits upon is an essential factor of consideration in this case. Sinking or shifting piling will destabilize your boat lift, and that can also cause the latter to bind, thereby making the lift a structural hazard apart from the damage that such piling may cause.


Hiring a professional marine construction worker to install your boat lift system will ensure that the setup is on stable piling so it can serve you longer.

If you need maintenance on your boat lift or just want an expert’s opinion, contact us today and the experts at Duncan Seawall will help you be certain your boat lift is in working order.

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