Aluminum is one of the most durable dock decking and hardware materials, but even it cannot evade ice’s powerful strength. To ensure that your aluminum dock is protected during the winter months and to keep it looking good for years and years to come, it’s a best practice to remove it during the winter. Fortunately, aluminum is a lightweight material, which makes the job relatively quick and easy. Here’s how to do it.
Steps for Storing Your Aluminum Dock for the Winter
- Plan where you will store it – Before you start hauling pieces of your dock out of the water, take a moment to consider where you will store your dock. Somewhere inside is great, but that’s not always feasible. The next best location is somewhere flat near the shoreline so you don’t have to haul it very far.
- Remove dock accessories – Disassemble your aluminum dock by first removing accessories like ladders and benches. Taking these apart will make dock removal much easier.
- Clean and inspect your dock – As part of the dock winterization process, you should take the time to clean your dock of any dirt and debris before storing it for the season. Also, take note of anything that needs to be repaired, and either fix it right away (preferred) or document the issue so you can handle it in the spring.
- Remove dock decking – Next, you should remove the dock decking and store it in a dry place. Be cognizant of how you store your decking so as not to cause damage or warping. It can also be helpful to label your dock sections to make reassembly in the spring easier. If you’re unable to store your decking inside, you might consider protecting it with a tarp or using pallets to elevate it.
- Pull out your aluminum dock frame – Lastly, remove and store your dock frame in a flood-free location. Depending on the type of dock, you may be able to stack it to save space.
Before hunkering down for the winter season, it’s important to take care of dock maintenance. Removing your aluminum dock will ensure its longevity and keep it protected from ice and snow. To learn more about dock maintenance or ask your questions about custom dock design, contact us at RDS Dock Hardware or fill out our free custom dock form.