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Floating Boat Dock vs. Fixed Boat Dock

You might be wondering, what is the difference between a floating boat dock and a fixed boat dock. We're here to give you the logistics on all the differences between the two!

Floating Docks

A floating dock is just as it sounds, it floats on the water. A floating dock is able to move up and down with your fluctuating water level. A floating dock is typically an easier install than a fixed dock. Floating docks are the most ideal dock for water fluctuation. Some lakes may have more water fluctuation than others, but typically every lake will have at least some fluctuation. If you live on a lake that is super deep, typically a floating dock is also your only option. The only real disadvantage with a floating dock is that it moves up and down with the waves. Which is not a problem typically, it just may not feel as stable on a rocky day.

Fixed Docks

A fixed dock is a dock that is a permanent structure at your waterfront. The dock would be anchored into the ground and you'd never plan on taking your dock out. They may feel a bit more stable on a rocky day, but they will not be able to go along with your fluctuating water depth. Say you had a very wet year and your lake was high, your dock would be under water and there's really not much you can do about it.

Things They Have in Common
  • They have a lifespan of up to 30 years. The better quality dock, the better quality the install, the longer your dock will last.

  • You normally will have to get the dock approved with your lake management no matter what. Your dealer may even do this for you.

  • They should both be configured by a professional that knows your lake, water depth, etc.

  • You may need a permit to get a dock because many lakes are regulated by the Corps of Engineers.


After all, it will come down to what kind of dock is best for you based on your lake, budget, what you'll use it for, etc. They both have different advantages and disadvantages to them both, so be sure to ask your local dealer all these questions before making a decision.


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