Preparing Your Boat and Dock for Hurricane Season

Preparing Your Boat and Dock for Hurricane Season

While summer is a time for fun on the water, it's also important to be mindful of hurricane season if you own property near the coast. In the United States, hurricane season typically spans from June to November, with the peak occurring in August and September. It's crucial to have a well-thought-out plan in place before a hurricane warning is issued to protect your valuable investments and minimize potential damage.

Pre-Season Preparation:

Inspect and Maintain Your Dock and Boat Lift:

  • Check your dock, boat lift, and other storage accessories to ensure they are in good condition and can withstand severe weather.
  • Repair or rebuild any weak spots using storm-resistant components. For example, water pushing up during a flood event can put a lot of force on your dock. Using materials like Sure Step Plus with a through-flow design will allow water to pass freely through your deck, minimizing the chance of damage to your dock.

Create a Hurricane Plan:

  • If available, review your marina's hurricane plan and coordinate your preparations accordingly.
  • Develop a detailed plan for securing or relocating your boat, dock, and boating equipment.
  • Ensure you have copies of important documents, such as insurance policies and boat registration, stored in a safe, dry place on land.

When a Hurricane is Approaching:

Secure or Remove Your Boat:

  • The safest option is to remove your boat from the water and store it as far inland as possible, strapped down on high ground.
  • If leaving your boat in the water is unavoidable, raise your boat lift as high as possible to keep it above the storm surge. Securely fasten it to the lift to prevent displacement.
  • Remove any removable parts from your boat, such as sails, biminis, and other items that could catch the wind and cause additional damage.

Prepare Your Boat, Dock, and Boat Lift:

  • Clear the dock of any loose items, water toys, or accessories that could become projectiles in high winds.
  • Remove boat lift motors, gearboxes, switches, and other electrical components, and store them in a dry, safe place to prevent water damage.
  • Seal all doors, windows, hatches, and other openings on your boat to prevent water intrusion.
  • Remove the drain plug from your boat. It may not be enough to keep your boat from filling with water, but it will allow the water to drain when the storm recedes.
  • Shut off your boat's fuel lines to minimize the risk of fuel spills or explosions.
  • Take photographs of your boat, dock, and boat lift for insurance purposes before the storm hits.

By following these steps and being proactive in your hurricane preparations, you can significantly increase the chances of your boat, dock, and boat lift surviving the storm with minimal damage. Remember, it's always better to have a solid plan in place before a hurricane warning is issued, as waiting until the last minute can leave you scrambling and potentially putting your valuable investments at risk.


Check out the CDC's blog on preparing for a hurricane for more tips. At Boat Lift Warehouse, we're here to provide you with the guidance, support, and high-quality products you need to protect your boating equipment. Stay safe, and happy boating!

Note: This blog post is not intended as a replacement for professional advice or specific instructions tailored to your unique situation. Always consult a professional for personalized guidance.

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