If a pontoon boat is left in water bodies, the chemicals and constituents in the water can have a corroding effect on the boat. To ensure that a pontoon boat looks new and is well maintained, an owner may consider a boat lift for pontoon to keep it out of water while it is being docked. These lifts are available in different shapes and sizes for accommodating pontoon boats from distinct manufacturers.
Type of Lifts
There are different types of boat lifts for pontoons available depending on their design.
Center Cradle Lift: A center cradle lift has its beams positioned to pick up the boat from in between the pontoons. These lifts are ideal for shallow waters.
Bunk Style Lift: Bunk style lifts have cross beams under the pontoon for lifting the boat. These lifts require deep waters to be used.
Floating Docks: Floating docks are generally made up of buoyant parts that are combined to form a dock for boat storage. These are drive-on and low maintenance but generally do not come with canopy.
Choosing a boat lift
A few factors must be considered while choosing a boat lift for pontoon that is an ideal fit.
Weight of the boat: Pontoon boats come in different sizes and with different seating capacity. These affect the weight of the boat along with other installed equipment. Lifts are designed with a predefined weight supporting capability for safe storage. These may vary anywhere between 1200 lbs. to 15000 lbs. or even more. While selecting a lift, an individual must ensure that it can support the weight of the pontoon that they are buying it for. Overloading a lift may cause it to fail and even damage its structural integrity.
Dimensions of the boat: Boats have different dimensions and these must be factored in while choosing a lift. The length of a boat can vary from 14 feet to 30 feet while its beam width may range from 7 feet to 12 feet. A custom-built pontoon may even be longer and wider. Choosing the right boat lift for pontoon will require a person to ensure that the lift has enough room to dock their boats.
Type of Water: A lift to be installed in seawater will have to be treated for increasing corrosion resistance as compared to that to be fitted in fresh water. The depth of the water will also have an impact on the buying decision. For shallow waters, a vertical lift may be ideal while for deep waters a bunk style lift will be better. While choosing the boat the type of water body and its depth must be considered.
With Canopy or without Canopy: Boat lifts are available both with and without canopy. An added canopy removes the hassles of having to cover the boat after every use. A boat lift for pontoon without canopy will require a person to purchase a separate cover for the pontoon boat though it will cover the boat better. A person may choose one among these based on their personal preferences.
Manual vs motorized: Some of the lifts are operated with hand while others can be fitted with a motor for easier operation. The motorized lifts will require a power source. A user may choose one of these depending on their requirements.
Consulting the lift manufacturer regarding the specifications of the boat can help a person to decide one which is perfect for their needs.
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