Recommended Tips for Buying Used Inflatable Boats on the Internet

By Danny Matterson

Those who enjoy spending time in the water have a newfound fondness for inflatable boats. One reason for this is that these rigs can be carried anywhere. Inflating and deflating them only takes 15 minutes or less, making setting up a cinch. After all the air has been removed, they can be placed in your bag and brought to your desired river or ocean destination. Because of a much-lower center of gravity, the stability and safety of these boats cannot be questioned.

Compared to their hard counterparts, inflatables are cheaper by leaps and bounds. However, the reality remains that for those with limited means, an inflatable can still be unaffordable. Thus, instead of buying a lower-end inflatable whose quality is subject to question, going for used but high-quality rigs is a much sounder decision.

Many who buy used inflatables are pleasantly surprised about the value and durability that these vessels come with. The cosmetic scratches do not belie the fact that a high-end used inflatable that is well-chosen still functions optimally. But it has to be "well-chosen." Ask someone who knows about boats if you don't know how to determine if a secondhand boat is still good or not.

Of all the used inflatable boats available in the market, the one closest to being brand new are those that have been returned to the manufacturer because they didn't meet the specifications of the customer. While not as gleaming as a brand new rig, they are still, for all intents and purposes, brand new. You can save anywhere from $100 to $200, sometimes more, when you get used returns.

Internet shopping for used inflatable boats needs a little bit of savvy since you'll only be relying on pictures, videos and the word of the seller most of the time. You can't check out an item the way you would in an actual physical setting. This means you will have to be wary in your dealings. Know what you want beforehand so that searching the used inflatable online becomes easier.

Ask sellers all the repairs that have been done on the inflatable for sale. Request for pictures so that you will be able to see if the patches are well-done and the boat still has a good many years left. You have less to worry about if the repairs were done by a professional. See to it that the patch adheres seamlessly to the material the boat is made of.

Have the seller send you pictures or video of the hull. Check it for longitudinal cracks since presence of these compromises the vessel and should serve as your warning flag to not consummate the sale.

Finally, look for your used inflatable from established and reputable websites. These include specific manufacturer's websites, or such merchant sellers as Amazon or Ebay. In these sites, you are assured that detailed descriptions and pictures of the used inflatable is made available to prospective buyers.

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