APRIL | MAY 2017 BoatU.S. Magazine | 49
ardous waste, and refilling the tank.”
Debbie also recommends reading the
boatyard’s repair-warranty policy and
making sure it transfers to a new owner.
One more nugget: “There’s no standard-
length warranty for service work, and
don’t assume a yard is going to extend
it if something breaks later. Check the
work right away.”
A good dealer or broker will go the extra mile. “During our
research, we learned that our dealer had
a good reputation. The salesman spent an
hour removing the old registration stickers for us, gave us some spare oil, flares,
and a horn, and got the techs to power
wash the cockpit carpet. I’d expect this
more from a dealer who owned the boat,
but consignment sales, where the sale is
just based on a straight commission, often
have less room for such extras.”
Go with a known entity.
An established repair facility can mean the
difference between a day on the water and
a day stuck at the dock. “We expected a
few minor things to crop up on a 14-year-
old boat, despite a thorough survey and
competent repairs.” The day after closing,
while cleaning the boat, Carl found that
a mount for the bilge blower was broken
and that the blower would have to be
replaced. “This was not included on our
list of work done and would have been
almost impossible for the surveyor to find.
But the marina had the part in stock and
installed it the next day.”
that the best thing
you can do is to
mitigate any sur-
prises up front. “In
our case, the survey
and sea trial were
not guarantees that
be found, but with-
out them, we’d
have certainly been
faced with far more
Now educate yourself – some more.
“Having come from sailboats, we didn’t
know nearly as much about powerboat
maintenance or handling,” says Debbie.
“The dealer invited us to join a class on
boat maintenance for express cruisers as
well as a class on docking and linehand-ling.” Even if you’re just moving up in
size on the same kind of boat, maintenance and boathandling may be quite
different from what you’re used to.
boat from a
the forms you
and click on
Sale Forms” to
There are well over 11,000 entries dating
back to 1988 in the searchable BoatU.S.
Consumer Protection database. Consumer
Protection coordinator Debbie Schaeffer
handles an average of three member
inquires every day. The months of May,
July, and August are the busiest for her,
while December is usually the slowest.
Last year, Debbie helped members get
back more than $52,000 through our
dispute-resolution process. If you’re a
member who has a problem with a boat,
contact Debbie at ConsumerProtection@
BoatUS.com or call her at (703) 461-2856.
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