How To Inspect Boat Condition

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 10,346
    BoatUS Foundation President Chris Edmonston demonstrates how to conduct a survey inspection to determine the condition of a boat before buying.

    Chris Edmonston: Hi! I am Chris Edmonston, President of BoatUS foundation and today we're going to talk about the value of getting a pre-purchase inspection. If you're thinking about buying a new boat, a survey can be the buyer's best friend when it comes to inspecting and evaluating the condition and seaworthiness of a boat.

    You want to try to get a competent marine surveyor well-versed at boat construction as well as safety manufacturing law's requirements and practices. You probably don't want to use a surveyor recommended by the dealer or rely upon survey report provided by the owner. It could predate existing conditions that need repair or gloss over problems that are expensive to fix or even downright dangerous.

    Boat should be surveyed both in and out of the water. Haul-out and other fees are at the buyer's expense. Engines should also be inspected by an independent marine mechanic.

    After you've had the first survey done on land, you want to follow-up with the sea trial to see how the boat handles underway. Find out of their performance problems that make the boat unstable, also make sure that all the gear works properly and finally all electronic equipments should be tested for accuracy.

    Surveys and sea trials that turn up flaws or problems can either allow you to back out of the contract without penalty or can be used to renegotiate the purchase price of the boat. A survey costs an average of $15-$20 per foot depending upon the size of the boat. And keep in mind though the survey is not a guarantee against undetected defects and it's really only a snapshot of when the survey took place.

    Remember a pre-purchase survey is going to give you peace of mind as you consider buying a new boat.