Here is a list of questions that our customers and prospective customers are most interested in when it comes to our floating docks and drive on docking systems. Please contact us if you have any questions that are not answered here.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you drive boats and PWC’s on to Gulf Stream Docks?
Gulf Stream’s drive on docks feature a contoured center channel that conforms to the keel of your boat or PWC. The back of the dock is sloped down close to the water to provide for a low point of entry. Gently nose the watercraft into the center channel, and then gently apply the throttle to glide your boat or PWC onto the dock where it will rest out of the water and stay dry.
How do I get my Outboard or I/O Boat off the dock?
Simply lower your outdrive into the water, shift the engine into reverse at low speed for a few seconds. This will fill the contoured center channel with water, creating lift and lubricating the hull and dock. After a few seconds increase the throttle speed in reverse and the boat will gently slide off the dock.
How do I get my jet ski off the dock?
The back of the dock is sloped so generally you can simply push the jet ski back on the dock a bit and then get your weight on the back of the jet ski and rock back and forth until the jet ski slides off.
How do I get my jet boat off the dock?
Our docks designed for jet boats, including the Switch pontoon boats, are equipped with a back winch system that allows you to easily back the boat off of the dock to get the engine and water before starting it up. Then put it in reverse and back right off
How is the dock delivered?
Your dock components will arrive on pallets and be delivered by a common carrier truck with a lift gate so the pallets can be unloaded and placed where you want. The floats only weigh 25 pounds each, so they are easy to move to the assembly area.
Can I install the dock myself?
Yes, Gulf Stream Docks have been designed for easy assembly and installation. In fact, most of our customers install their own docks. Assembly requires laying out the floats on a flat surface and then connecting them together with our molded connecting pins. Most of our docks can be assembled in two to three hours or less and some can be assembled in as little as 15 minutes. Check out the videos here
Do I need special tools?
Gulf Stream Docks systems come complete with an assembly tool kit. This kit includes a tool to attach the connecting pins and a hex wrench to secure plugs to the floats. We also offer a post pounder kit to install mooring poles.
Will Gulf Stream Docks scratch my boat?
The High Molecular weight polyethylene that is used in the Gulf Stream floats is softer than the gel coat and fiberglass of your boat so boat will not get scratched. The Dock will affect your hull about the same as using a trailer or other bunk style boat lift. Keeping your dock clean and hosed off will minimize the chance of sand and grit on the dock scratching your boat.
Why doesn’t Gulf Stream use a one-piece, rigid center channel in the drive-on docking systems?
After many years of research and development, Gulf Stream Docks has truly embraced the adaptability of modular docking systems. While one-piece rigid drive on docking slabs appear to be more solid in construction, this is not the case. Actually, the opposite is true. Once piece designs create tremendous pressure on both the hull of your boat and the dock itself, virtually eliminating “cradling” the boat and eliminating pressure points on your hull and the internal stringers. This is why one piece systems require the use of wheels and rollers that can fail and even potentially damage the hull of your boat. The multiple-float design of Gulf Stream’s contoured center channel ensures that your Gulf Stream Dock will move with the unique shape of your hull-providing a custom fit for virtually all watercraft. Most importantly though, our system’s custom configuration of contoured floats, half-floats, and full floats provides the lowest water-entry point in the modular dock industry.
What Gulf Stream Docks made of?
Our floats are made with the highest grade HDPE and UV inhibiting materials available to provide years of great looks and durability – and they are 100% recyclable.
Do I need bottom paint on my boats?
No, your boat is completely out of the water and dry on Gulf Stream Docks. If you have bottom paint already, the dock will eventually wear on the bottom paint where the hull is in contact with the dock.
Do I need to clean off barnacles or other growth off of the bottom of Gulf Stream Docks?
No, you do not need to clean the bottom of the dock. They have plenty of buoyancy and will support the growth. However, the floats clean up well if you want to clean off the sides for appearance. If you ever need to move or sell the dock the floats can be pressure washed and will look like new.
Can I put bottom paint on Gulf Stream Docks?
Bottom paint or any coating for that matter does not adhere well to the HDPE material that our floats are made of. And as stated above, the floats have sufficient buoyancy to support any growth.
How long have there been modular floating dock systems around?
The systems originated in Europe in the early 1970′s. They were originally used as temporary bridges for the military as well as floating docks. In this country, over 12,000 floats were used at the 1984 summer Olympics in Los Angeles. These floats are still in use today. The first drive on docks were invented and used back in 1983 in preparation for the Olympics. Most of the other drive on docking systems are based on exactly the same solution that was created back then with little improvement. Gulf Stream is the first modular floating docks system to completely innovate the solution by using a contoured center channel and a unique connecting system to provide the best and safest modular floating drive on dry dock available today. It is predicted that floating docks will become a major portion of the dock market in the future.
How long has Gulf Stream Docks been around?
Gulf Stream Docks has been around since 2009. The new Gulf Stream Docks system is just that – new. However, it has been developed and engineered based on decades of experience in the marine industry and many years of experience in the modular dock industry. We did not reinvent the wheel with the new Gulf Stream Docks product line – we just substantially improved it.
How much weight will each float hold?
Each of the float will hold over 200 lbs. Ten floats will hold ONE TON! Our short floats will hold 180 lbs. So, our docks definitely have enough buoyancy for your boat, many people and equipment.
Can I run my Gulf Stream Dock all the way onto shore?
Yes, your dock can be installed on or above the shoreline. In many cases we have designed a walkway that rests on the shoreline to form a gentle ramp leading out to to your main dock. The floats are fine sitting on dry ground with no sharp object.
Will Gulf Stream systems work in shallow water?
Yes, you can use the dock anywhere you can drive your boat or PWC. The dock is fine at rest on the bottom during low tides. The important thing is that there is enough depth at the stern of the dock to allow the boat to back off.
What if I puncture or damage a float?
Gulf Steam Docks’ warranty covers defects in materials or workmanship. It does not cover damage from storms, abuse or punctures. Luckily, Gulf Stream Docks’ floats are very robust and can withstand considerable blows. However, in the unlikely event of a puncture, the one damaged float can easily be replaced; you will not have to replace the entire dock. Remember, all the other floats around a damaged float will keep the damaged float buoyant.
What should I do in the event of a bad storm or hurricane?
Because of the flexibility afforded by the Gulf Steam Docks float modules our docks will ride through waves and wakes very well. The waves ride under the dock rather than lift them up and slap them down. Also, because Gulf Stream Docks float on the water, the wind does not get under them like it does with conventional docks and lifts, which is what causes most damage. Similarly, a surge in water level can break apart a conventional dock or boat lift. Our docks just rise with the water level. In a direct hit with a major storm anything can happen. However, in the event of an incoming major storm the best thing to do is to secure the dock with long enough heavy ropes so that if the dock rises above its attachment points it will stay close by.