Professional pre-purchase survey reports are essential before buying a new or used
boat. There is no such thing as a perfect boat as all vessels have strengths and
weakness depending on your budget and your requirements. No matter how cheap a vessel
may seem, if it is not up to the task for you it is a waste of money and may put
lives at risk.
One party, the seller, the broker or the buyer commissions the surveyor to carry
out an initial survey. After the results of the initial survey the surveyor can
then be asked to complete a detailed survey and submit his report to the person who
commissioned him to survey the vessel.
The survey can involve a large range of visual and scientific tests. Tests that can
be carried out include, excessive moisture levels for GRP and timber, wastage and
corrosion (steel and aluminum), and delaminating and fatigue for composite and ferro
concrete hulls. All underwater fittings are thoroughly inspected and moisture readings
and ultra sonic thickness testing is carried out. 12 volt DC systems are inspected
but AC electrical systems and gas fittings must inspected by professional tradesmen.
Samples of engine, gearbox and hydraulic oils can be taken for testing and corrosion
testing can be carried in areas known for problems such as rigging, metal to metal
contacts, ground tackle and tanks to mention just few. The charges for these tests
are normally in addition to the standard survey fee.
Your report will cover safety concerns, structural integrity, design and operational
restrictions. At the completion you surveyor will give you a verbal report which
will then be followed by a detailed written report including digital images of the
vessel and any defects identified during the survey.