How to Launch a Boat: 5 Tips to Make the Process Easier than Ever!

If you’ve recently purchased a boat, the first launch can be stressful. But don’t worry—with these tips, you’ll find that launching is quick and easy. Read on to learn exactly how to launch a boat the right way.

Prepare Thoroughly (Even Before You Leave)

Preparing to launch your boat may be just as important as backing the trailer and properly floating the craft. There is preparation that should be done both before and after you reach the ramp. You should wear clothing that you don’t mind getting wet, and be sure that the boat has all the right equipment, including long ropes if needed.

When you arrive at the ramp, take off all straps and motor supports and make sure the drain plug is in place. Then, tilt the motor upright so the prop and lower unit are raised. Mount your electronic while you are still on land so you don’t accidentally drop them in the water.

Get Out and Visually Inspect the Access

Even if this is your favorite boat ramp—one that you have used hundreds of times—get out and inspect the area. Make sure there are no underwater hazards, and check the traction on the ground.

 Go Slow and Focus on the Boat, Ramp, and Water

If you’re a beginner, the most important tip is to go slow. For most boaters, if they try to go quick, problems occur that make the process last even longer. Even if there is a line of other boats, there is no rush—they would rather see you get it right and move on than rush, make a mistake, and hold up the ramp for ten more minutes.

Back Your Trailer Until the Boat is Just Starting to Float

It’s tempting to keep backing into the water until the boat is feet from the trailer, but all you need is the craft to just barely rise. Until the boat is safely in the water, do not remove the safety pin. Once the boat is floating, trim down the motor and let the entire unit be submerged. Then, start the engine while the safety connection is still in place—you don’t want to drift off in a boat that won’t start! Once the motor is idling smoothly, detach the connection and park the boat.

Dock Your Boat and Move Your Truck

Now that you are safely detached, all you need to do is park your boat at the ramp and move your vehicle and trailer. Throughout the process, remember to be courteous and patient. Be nice to everyone—you  never know when you might need help—and your boat launch will go smoothly (almost) every time!

Purchase a Luxury Boat

Now that you know how to launch a boat, use our Build Your Scout feature to create a top-quality craft for your specific needs. From large vessels to luxury fishing boats, you’ll get world-class craftsmanship no matter what you choose when you buy from Scout Boats!

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