The Boat Lemon Laws

What Are Boat Lemon Laws?

Boat lemon laws were passed to help you recoup your loss in the event that you purchased a boat that is defective.


Most people consider lemon laws to apply to cars only, although they encompass several items—even hearing aids.

In some states, boats may be covered by motor vehicle lemon laws. In other states, these laws do not apply. Either way, there are lemon laws for boats in certain states, laws that can provide help if you purchased a boat that needs repair or replacement.

boat lemon laws florida etc beautiful boat on blue water with trees in background

Keep in mind that not all the boat lemon laws are the same. While one state may have a consumer-friendly lemon law, others have little protection for those who purchase a boat.

How Does the Lemon Law Apply to My Boat?

The key to any lemon law, including the one for boats, is that the product be covered under a warranty. Manufacturers are obligated under these laws to repair or replace the boat, or refund the cost of purchase.

It is important to note that the lemon law does not apply to a boat that has passed the coverage period for the warranty. If your boat is still inside the warranty period, the manufacturer is required to make an attempt to repair the boat before replacing it.

lemon law for boats such as florida state floating on lake

How Many Boat Repair Attempts Are Necessary?

Some states have requirements written in the lemon law that require the boat to undergo three to four repair attempts before replacement is necessary.

After three to four attempts, if the issue is still not fixed, the boat can be classified as a lemon. If you are fortunate enough to live in a state with a good boat lemon law, the manufacturer must replace your boat.

lemon boat law picture of red wooden broken down defective boat on the water

What Are My Chances?

In many cases, the manufacturer of the boat won't want the bad publicity that comes with a lemon law lawsuit. After making three to four attempts to repair the issue, the manufacturer will know that the boat is a lemon.

In many cases, they will replace it with a working one. If not, it may be necessary for you to seek a lemon law attorney and file a suit against the company for the cost of the boat, a new boat, or whatever the law in your state allows for.

Other Types of Boats Protected Under
Boat Lemon Laws

Paddle boats don't have motors or mechanical/electronic equipment. As such, they usually aren't covered by a lemon law.

Yachts, motorboats, and power boats are the types of boats that come under the lemon laws. They have motors, and as such they can experience mechanical failure.

lemon law for boats red boat in lake photo

No one wants to make such an exciting investment as a boat just to find out that it isn't working as expected. Such a disappointment can be devastating.

Owning a boat is what many people dream of. If you purchased a boat with a warranty and it is not living up to your expectations, do contact the manufacturer to put a claim on your warranty. They should attempt repairs within a timely manner.

If not, the boat lemon laws will be on your side in any lawsuit you begin.

NOTE:The information here is not legal advice and is only presented to you so you can know your options if you purchased a lemon. As with any legal issue, you should seek the advice of a qualified attorney.


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