Whether caused by storms, wear and tear, or weathering, your marina's boat docks are likely to need care and maintenance over time. If you haven't had your boat docks inspected and repaired recently, you may be overlooking the signs of potential dock failure. Here's a look at some things that you should know about damaged boat docks and when to call a marina repair contractor.

Check The Piles

If your dock and pier are supported by piles, it's important that you monitor the condition of those piles on a regular basis. This often means needing a marina repair contractor to send divers to inspect the base of the piles as well as examining the visible portions above the surface.

Any signs of damage, deterioration, or shifting are cause for concern. These problems can weaken the structural integrity of the dock and the pier, creating a safety hazard. You'll want to either replace the piles or talk with your contractor about encapsulating them to add support and reinforcement.

Look For Surface Damage

Since docks and piers experience a lot of water exposure, and salt exposure if you're on a saltwater coast, it's important that you're attentive to signs of erosion or damage to the wooden surfaces. If you're seeing any deterioration in the wood, you need to reach out to a marina repair contractor about replacement. 

If you're going to repair the surface by replacing the damaged wood, you should ask your contractor about the possibility of switching from pressure-treated wood to vinyl or something similar. You'll find that vinyl surface materials will last longer on your dock because they aren't prone to the same kind of damage from the water.

Test The Structural Integrity

Another important factor when you're dealing with dock inspections and repairs is ensuring that your docks are generally stable. Especially in seacoast areas, where winds can be high, your dock may experience some structural weakening from the winds and storms.

If you're noticing even small movements in your dock that weren't happening before, it's important that you take the necessary steps to have the dock properly supported. It may mean having to replace the foundation, or it may mean having to drive additional supports into the ground beneath the dock. 

Your marina repair contractor can assess the situation and help you decide the best possible methods for reinforcing your dock and ensuring its stability.

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