New Boat Inspection

Hartwell Ski

Member
Messages
11
Reaction score
7
Hey all -

I have finalized my build and am putting in my order this week:

22 LFB with 200 merc (w/ merc power steering )
Double Bimini
In floor storage
Upgraded capt chairs with raised helm
Garmin 7
A a few more adds

looking for advice on things to check when boat is delivered. Any common issues that people have discovered on their new Bennington that I should watch out for?

thanks.
 

ILLINOIS AVE

Well-Known Member
Messages
771
Reaction score
614
Location
Green Lake Wisconsin
Hey all -

I have finalized my build and am putting in my order this week:

22 LFB with 200 merc (w/ merc power steering )
Double Bimini
In floor storage
Upgraded capt chairs with raised helm
Garmin 7
A a few more adds

looking for advice on things to check when boat is delivered. Any common issues that people have discovered on their new Bennington that I should watch out for?

thanks.
Welcome ! A good dealer should inspect and walk you through your new investment. From stern to bow, top to bottom.
Good Luck !
 

CLDave

Well-Known Member
Messages
85
Reaction score
168
Have the dealer show you how to properly cover and uncover the boat (the new clips are tricky on the mooring covers, but easy when you get the hang of them), how to use the tow bar if you have one, battery switches, and run through the break-in process.

Look at everything on the boat, including under the cockpit, for minor issues, scrapes, dents or anything else that seems out of place. Better to get warranty work done while you're there in-person than needing to take it back later.

My boat was perfect cosmetically, but I went through every inch before I took possession.
 

DejaWiz

Well-Known Member
Messages
363
Reaction score
328
Location
Nebraska
In conjunction to what's already been suggested, I'll add this: the prop!

Make sure you are getting the best prop for your specific motor, boat length/weight, and primary usage on your preferred body of water.
 

Michiman

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,301
Reaction score
1,924
Location
Okemos, MI
Welcome Hartwell! I'd agree with the advise posted above and just add a request for some pictures when you get her next spring!
 

Titletown Mike

Well-Known Member
Messages
59
Reaction score
132
As others have mentioned, go through everything, even if you are a seasoned boater. Ask them to show you the following (partial list, not all inclusive):
1. Bimini: Proper way to open and close, while it is open - look for tears in bimini, loose screws (give it a shake), how to put in trailering position, top speed with it open, etc.

2. Engine: Break in, process/sequence to starting, what do the alarms/beeps mean, what fuel to use, winterizing, prop, What to do if it doesn't start or the beeps/warnings are different than normal, etc..

3. Seats/Upholstery: Look at seams for tears/poor stitching, ask about proper maintenance of material, how to get various stains out such as sunscreen, food/beverage, blood, pollen, etc.

4. Go through the entire helm and have them show you what each of the switches do. Verify they do what they are supposed to. Go through the radio and how to sync Bluetooth or any other features. Go through the SIMRAD or whatever screens you may have.

5. Batteries: Where are they? Any switches? Any special maintenance needed?

6. Trailer: Maintenance of trailer, method or tips on how to launch/load pontoon on trailer, tie down straps, tow with cover on or off, etc.

7. Overall: Look for scratches, bents, dings, and anything that doesn't look right. Point it out, make sure they note it. Depending on when you get your boat, they can always work on minor or cosmetic issues at the end of the boating season (unless you are lucky and have boating season all year). You may get a small list of items during the first summer that may need to be looked at or repaired. Best for them to do everything at once.

8. Safety: Lanyard kill switch for ignition, ask your dealer about laws specific to your state, etc.

Go through the entire boat. If you don't know how to do something or what something is, ask. Take notes if possible. You will be going through a lot of information and with the excitement, I guarantee you won't remember some of the minor but important details.
 

Vikingstaff

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,412
Reaction score
3,390
Location
Michigan
All of the above is great advise. I would add only 2 things:

(1) (You’ll need to pre-arrange this one if it is feasible for your dealer to do) If after all the above the boat is looking 100% set, you and the sales, delivery, or service rep should take it out for a water trial. When on the water, go back through EVERYTHING you just went over on land, but now making sure it all works as it should, and that you have tried using it hands on (with dealer assistance sitting there with you on the water).

(2) Prior to #1 above, if ANYTHING is not right (cosmetically or mechanically) do not sign and accept the boat. Identify the concern/problem at that time before taking possession of the boat. Make signing off on the boat and taking possession contingent on first correcting any identified problems.

Failure to do #2 above was my big mistake in 2017!

There was a rectangluar stretch of discolored port pontoon near our portside door just above the water line. Very visible at inspection, and more so after 4 years. I identified it at inspection, but was assured by my dealer it would be taken care of by Bennington under warranty at my 20 hour service.

I naively accepted that assurance and I signed and took possession that day. Unfortunately my dealer made a promise on Benningtons behalf that Bennington didn’t honor later under warranty or otherwise. I think of this mistake everytime I see the spot - which is often. In retrospect I’d said “keep the boat and take care of the cosmetic blemish. When done, I will look it over. If corrected, I will accept the boat and close the last part of the sale at that time.” I blew that one.
 

Jb75

Well-Known Member
Messages
198
Reaction score
195
Location
Greenville SC
Hartwell ski, if you are on Lake Hartwell and your dealer is marine max (formerly hall marine) Greenville the above advise is great, but you will have very little trouble with the dealer. That met are fantastic to work with and in my experience very customer oriented. Enjoy the boat. See you on the lake
 

DaveyJ

Well-Known Member
Messages
269
Reaction score
339
Location
Moorhead, MN
Great advice above about what to look for at delivery. Post delivery. since this is your first boat, it would good to go out with someone who already owns a tritoon/pontoon and have them show you the ropes about things like docking, etc. I say this specifically because when we bought our first boat, I had never driven a boat and proceeded to bang it off a dock in the first 5 minutes doing a $1000 damage to the fiberglass. Also, make sure the person knows the body of water, friends of ours brought a buddy (knew the body of water but owns a jet boat) on their maiden voyage. There was a buoyed channel right by the landing where you have to trim up due to rocks. Buddy with jet boat normally flies right thru so they didn’t trim up and removed 3 of the 4 blades on their prop, Of course, this is a moot point if you’ve been around boats a lot but just never owned one. Happy boating and happy thanksgiving!
 

Michiman

Well-Known Member
Messages
2,301
Reaction score
1,924
Location
Okemos, MI
All of the above is great advise. I would add only 2 things:

(1) (You’ll need to pre-arrange this one if it is feasible for your dealer to do) If after all the above the boat is looking 100% set, you and the sales, delivery, or service rep should take it out for a water trial. When on the water, go back through EVERYTHING you just went over on land, but now making sure it all works as it should, and that you have tried using it hands on (with dealer assistance sitting there with you on the water).

(2) Prior to #1 above, if ANYTHING is not right (cosmetically or mechanically) do not sign and accept the boat. Identify the concern/problem at that time before taking possession of the boat. Make signing off on the boat and taking possession contingent on first correcting any identified problems.

Failure to do #2 above was my big mistake in 2017!

There was a rectangluar stretch of discolored port pontoon near our portside door just above the water line. Very visible at inspection, and more so after 4 years. I identified it at inspection, but was assured by my dealer it would be taken care of by Bennington under warranty at my 20 hour service.

I naively accepted that assurance and I signed and took possession that day. Unfortunately my dealer made a promise on Benningtons behalf that Bennington didn’t honor later under warranty or otherwise. I think of this mistake everytime I see the spot - which is often. In retrospect I’d said “keep the boat and take care of the cosmetic blemish. When done, I will look it over. If corrected, I will accept the boat and close the last part of the sale at that time.” I blew that one.
Truth!
 
Top