3 Benefits Of Choosing Custom Aluminum Docks Over Steel Boat Docks

Boat docks are constantly exposed to wet conditions. So, when looking for materials to build a dock, consider how they will fare in a damp environment. The most common material used to build boat docks include:

  • Steel 
  • Wood
  • Aluminum 

Wooden boat docks tend to degrade much faster than metal docks. Thus, most dock owners usually opt for aluminum or steel docks. 

However, aluminum and steel docks have varying maintenance costs and durability. Hence, you need to weigh the benefits of each material before choosing one. 

Here are three reasons you should opt for custom aluminum docks instead of steel docks. 

1. Low Maintenance Costs

Steel comprises mainly iron. Hence, it is prone to rust when the iron oxidizes. The steel used to build boat docks has a zinc coating (galvanized) to protect it from rust. But after some time, the galvanization wears off and exposes the steel to rust. 

If you opt for a steel boat dock, you have to regularly re-galvanization or repaint the steel dock to prevent rusting. You should therefore expect high maintenance costs with steel docks.

Aluminum is entirely resistant to rusting. Therefore, aluminum docks have fewer maintenance costs than steel docks because you don't need to protect them against rust. 

2. Less Pollution 

When choosing dock materials, you should also consider the materials' effects on the environment. For instance, if you're building a dock on a freshwater lake, you have to think about the aquatic life in the lake.

When a steel dock starts to rust, the rust pollutes the water contaminating the natural habitat of various species of aquatic life. The rust from a steel dock might also cause marine life to die or develop health issues. 

Aluminum oxide doesn't corrode like iron oxides (rust). Hence, aluminum docks do not pollute the water even when they become oxidized. Thus, custom aluminum docks are more suitable for the environment than steel docks. 

3. Longer Lifespan

Though galvanization extends the lifespan of steel docks, aluminum docks still last longer. 

When the galvanized coating wears off, steel docks degrade rapidly due to rust. Rust corrodes a dock; thus, the more a steel dock corrodes, the more it weakens. However, a well-maintained steel dock should last for several decades. 

But aluminum is not susceptible to deterioration when exposed to the elements. On the contrary, when aluminum is oxidized, it forms a tough aluminum oxide coating on the surface. The aluminum oxide coating is impervious to the elements, thus protecting the dock against degradation. 

Hence, unless a custom aluminum dock suffers structural damage, it will outlast a steel dock. For more information on custom aluminum docks, contact a company near you.