Shopping for pre-owned boats in Alexandria, MN can be a fun and exciting experience. As you think of your time on the water, boat shopping becomes the next step in achieving your dream. But, what should you look for as you shop? What questions should you ask? Following are the top five inquiries you should be making as you shop for pre-owned boats in Alexandria, MN.

What are my boating needs?
How do you plan to use your boat? Will you want to spend time cruising peacefully, or will you want high speeds? How many people will you typically have on the boat? Do you want to spend short or long periods of time on the water? Answering these questions will determine what size boat, engine power, weight limits and storage or living space you will need.

Are there signs of damage?
Inspect fiberglass and wooden areas for flexing and cracking. Are the hull, transom and floor solid? Examine metal surfaces for corrosion. Salt water can deteriorate unprotected surfaces quickly. If they have not been properly maintained, these parts can weaken or crack due to corrosion. Look over rigging materials and check for frayed nylon. Also ensure that bulk heads are secure. With time or poor use, these can loosen.

Is the engine oil healthy?
The engine oil should not feel gritty. This indicates the presence of metal filings and serious engine wear. The oil should not be milky either. This means water is getting inside. The cause might be a worn seal or a cracked engine block. If the oil has either of these qualities, make your purchase elsewhere, or at least have a mechanic inspect the boat to determine the cause. You can also ask for documentation of regular maintenance for the boat.

Do all electrical systems work properly?
Check all systems for proper functioning. A single burned-out bulb is not a concern, but multiple issues could indicate faulty wiring or a bad battery. Check the battery water. If it is low, the batteries need to be replaced. A more serious scenario would be engine overheating. Look for signs of this on the engine. If labels have peeled up or wire insulation has melted, it’s likely the engine has overheated in the past.

Is the boat clean?
Check seats and carpet for mildew. Mold spreads quickly and can cause problems beyond aesthetics. It can weaken materials and cause health concerns. Look at the engine. A clean engine is a sign of good maintenance. The overall appearance of the boat, both inside and out, are also good indicators of how well the boat was maintained by its previous owner. If it looks trashed, you’ll want to pass.
Armed with the right knowledge, boat shoppers can successfully choose the best boat for their needs. Asking the right questions enables buyers to shop for pre-owned boats in Alexandria, MN with confidence. The knowledgeable staff at Alex Auto & Marine LLC is available to answer any of your questions and help you get behind the wheel of your dream boat today.