Buying a boat, whatever the size, is a big and expensive decision. You want to make the right decision and know that you understand the boat you are purchasing. Do your research on the type of boat that suits your needs, skills and budget, think about how to purchase the boat and how to make sure you will get the most out of your investment.

While many of these things you can research online and engage a broker to aid you through finding the right boat, there are certain times when you really should engage professional marine mechanics.

If purchasing a used boat, a pre-purchase inspection is important. Pre-purchase inspections are the equivalent of a building inspection before buying a house. It tells you about the serious and not so serious problems the boat’s propulsion units might have, what maintenance and service issues to anticipate in the future as well as helps you to understand the boat you are planning to buy. We also carry out oil sampling to give an extensive view of the internal running of the machinery.

We have currently a boat we are working on where the owner could have benefitted from a pre-purchase inspection before buying his boat. He had bought a 41-foot boat in a seemingly good condition and with no obvious issues. Unfortunately, later down the line, this boat has had an engine failure, a fault an oil sample would have shown up by elevated minerals in the report. Saying this, there has another issue as well; the design of the boat. Because of the cabin design of this boat, its engines are placed in the middle of the boat with very limited access from either side with fuel tanks and water and holding tanks, so engine removal out through the side was not an option. In fact, the only way for us to access the engine bay to rectify engine issues was through the roof. We have had to remove the roof of the boat, carry out the work required, and to re-attach the roof again. With a different design, this kind of work would normally happen through an access area at the back of the boat.

Due to the limitations set by the design of this boat, the cost of the job will be around $75,000 with the removal of the roof while without the removal of the roof on different engine configurations, the cost would have been considerably less.

The newer shape sleek design hulls on the market look great, but unfortunately, it takes more time-consuming labour to carry out the needed repairs. Quite often lack of access and room are afterthoughts, as a spacious engine bay is not a selling point to the consumer.

Design issues are only a small part of pre-purchase inspection but a good example of the detailed view it gives to your boat. A pre-purchase inspection can reveal serious issues that can change your mind about purchasing that boat, it can give you details of less serious issues that can give you leverage to negotiate the price or it can give you peace of mind that what you see is what you get. One way or the other, you will not make a purchase of a lifetime with your eyes shut.

Get in touch with us and arrange our certified marine mechanics to inspect your potential new boat before you take the next step.