What the Dealer (or Manufacturer) Didn’t Do When You Bought Your New Boat

Boat dealers aren’t always set up to tweak out a new boat to your personal liking.

Many folks understand that when it comes to something like choosing the right propeller, you should plan to do it on your own. But there are several other things your dealer or manufacturer may or may not do, which also need to be addressed. You want to make sure your boat is set up as well as possible? Here are some other items you need to check out:

boat trailer

Are you sure that trailer is set up right? Some boats, particularly unusual models like this powercat, will require serious work to ride the highway properly.

1. Trailer bunk placement – Many dealerships (especially large ones that carry multiple brands) don’t adjust individual trailers to individual boats. This may or may not be necessary depending on the package you buy, but if you’re not sure what the dealer did or did not do when you got your boat, you should find out if they adjusted the trailer. This is especially true with oddly-shaped hulls, like power cats and/or tunnel boats. Otherwise, your load could be uneven, the boat could be less stable on the trailer, or the hull could even warp.

2. RPM Gauge wiring – Most modern RPM gauges have several poles on the back, which the harness plugs into. Unfortunately, it’s quite common for the manufacturer to plug the right wire onto the wrong pole, which results in faulty RPM readings at the helm. Dealers rarely catch this problem, so after buying a new boat you need to match the gauge’s reading the the engine manufacturer’s specifications. If it’s not even close, the wires are probably out of kilter. If it’s off but not dramatically, you may need to consider swapping propellers.

3. Gel Coat Finish – Some dealers will use an acidic wash to clean the boats in their lot. This makes them shine, and they look great for the next week or so. But that acid also strips away all of the wax which your gel coat needs for protection from the elements. The best move? Any time you take delivery of a new boat, immediately wash it and lay down a thick coat of protective paste wax.