How to Use a Boat Lift

Do you want to maximize the enjoyment you get from your boat? A boat lift lets you keep your craft out of the water when you’re not using it, resulting in less maintenance and more protection from waves, wind and other destructive forces. 

How to Use a Boat Lift Correctly

Most boat lifts consist of either a motorized or hydraulic lifting system to raise and lower the watercraft in and out of the water quickly, efficiently and safely. Using a boat lift requires knowledge of how to place the vessel into the water. You’ll also need to understand how to get it back onto the lift when returning, a process referred to as “parking.”

Lowering the Boat Into the Water

Many boat lift systems feature bunk boards attached to a suspended cradle that supports the boat’s weight. Flipping or pressing the power switch will activate the motor or hydraulics and ease the craft into the water. When the cradle moves below the waterline, the boat should move freely off the lift. 

This process is typically a two-person job. One individual controls the power switch, while the other boards the watercraft to steer it off and guide it away from the launch area. The driver must be sure the boat is entirely free of the lift before operating it. 

The Boat Lift Parking Process

Repositioning the boat onto the lift upon returning can be more challenging than getting it into the water. The process requires a steady hand and careful maneuvering. 

As you approach the dock, you’ll need to monitor the vessel’s speed. If you go too fast, you could strike another watercraft or overshoot the cradle. If you’re not moving quickly enough, wind or waves could cause the boat to drift and miss the mark. You can apply short bursts of power as you get closer to the lift to maintain speed.

The lift operator will need to lower it so that the bunk boards are far enough below the water’s surface to accommodate the boat. The driver should turn off the vessel’s motor and carefully position the craft onto the cradle, using the lift’s parking guides for navigation. Factors such as water currents and the wind affect the boat’s movement, making it essential for the operator to maintain tight control. 

After maneuvering the lift onto the boat, the lift operator should raise the boat high enough out of the water to provide sufficient clearance and allow everyone on the watercraft to exit safely. 

Contact EZ Dock for More Boat Lift Tips

EZ Dock offers an assortment of boat lift systems that provide easy access to your boat and help to protect it and extend its lifespan. Our products feature manual control as a standard feature and remote control as a convenient option. We can also give you more valuable boat lift tips that allow you to use them efficiently and safely. Contact us for more information today.