Boat Repair: Selecting a Marine Mechanic
A competent boat technician can enable you to enjoy your vessel by keeping it operating reliably and competently fixing accessories that can assure you a fun moment on the water. Finding a suitable mechanic can be daunting. Fortunately, this page is here to answer your questions about boat repair.
What does a boat technician do?
You hire a boat mechanic to maintain your vessel and its engine, repair any system that isn’t functioning rightly, and prepare the boat for off-season storage. As an alternative to maintaining your own boat, the service of a qualified technician will see you keep your boat dependable and your time on the water enjoyable. In most instances, a good mechanic has tools and skills you probably do not have.
Why do I require a boat mechanic?
Even if your vessel never requires a repair, it’ll need maintenance now and then. There are some maintenances many boat possessors can learn to handle, for example, removing the propeller to examine the propshaft for twisted fishing line or checking the engine oil level. However, today’s boat engines and electronics are intricate, and proper service usually needs special tools and training. Unless you have the desire and time to obtain those tools and skills, the services of a marine technician are a worthwhile investment. At the minimum, your boat engine will need yearly maintenance to avoid annulling your warranty. And several boat owners will require to have the boat prepared for wintertime storage at the end of the season.
How can I get a good marine technician?
If you’re purchasing a new boat from a dealer, ask about the service subdivision before you finalize the deal:
Request to meet the service manager.
Get a swift tour of the service shop section, the shop should appear clean and well-organized.
Ask the duration for which the service manager has been in business.
Ask about the dealership technician’s level of training.
Marine engine manufacturers have wide-ranging training programs through which they certify technicians who pass the challenging tests as ‘master technicians’. If the facility has master technicians, there might be certificates such as diplomas hanging on the walls. It is also good to ask about wait times, which can be weeks in peak seasons if the facility is short-staffed. Several dealers will attempt to ensure new boat clients have a priority for service during peak seasons.
A larger vessel with more systems including fishing or navigation electronics, galley plumbing, air conditioning, or generator, might need a mechanic with more specific skills. In some instances, dealerships will subcontract a contractor for some of these services; however, it is important to inquire ahead of time.
Also, ask about mobile services. You have the option of having a mechanic come to your vessel for basic drive or engine service, electronic service, and more tasks that can be done far from the shop. You might pay a bit higher prices, but you enjoy the convenience of not having to move your vessel.
You can also peruse the internet for feedback on a boat repair shop, but word-of-mouth remains a great endorsement. Before selecting a shop, ask for recommendations from fellow boaters or a person you trust in the marine business. You need to know that while prices could be higher, a shop that invests in certified technicians and good diagnostic equipment typically provides better service.