When it comes to choosing a lift for your boat, pontoon or PWC, there are a few things you will need to know to ensure you purchase a lift that is the proper size for your watercraft. Knowing the overall weight and beam of your boat is the best place to start. This will allow you to choose the correct weight capacity and the correct cradle width.
Finding the Overall WeightWhen determining the overall weight of a watercraft, you will need to account for the dry weight of the watercraft, the fuel, gear, water and the weight of any non-factory additions. This will give you a more accurate weight, allowing you to choose the correct lift capacity.
- The dry weight of a watercraft is usually provided in the brochure or specification sheet for the watercraft. Another great resource for this information is the online NADA guides (www.nadaguides.com/Boats). Please note, the dry weight provided often does not account for the weight of outboard motors.
- Depending on the temperature, type, and blend, gasoline weighs approximately 6 lbs. per gallon (0.72 kg per liter). With this information and the capacity of your fuel tank, you can calculate how much a full tank of gas will add to your boat’s overall weight.
- Water weighs approximately 8 lbs. per gallon (0.96 kg per liter). You should account for the capacity of your fresh water tanks, waste water tanks, and any live wells.
- The weight of non-factory additions like wakeboard towers, bimini tops, additional seating, generators, air conditioning units, coolers and swim platforms should be added to the overall weight calculation.
- Take a look at everything stored in your boat. Your gear like skis, wakeboards, scuba equipment, etc. should be added to the total weight of the watercraft.