Why Your Dock’s Foundation is So Important

If you’re a waterfront property owner in St. Pete, you probably know a dock’s foundation is important, but do you really know how important? Investing in an impressive dock is a surefire way to boost your property value, but proper dock construction takes real skill. Did you know that the most consequential aspect of your dock, by far, is its foundation pilings? The importance of a dock’s foundation pilings cannot be underestimated.


Foundation Pilings: How Will Your Dock Be Used?


In St. Pete, the load requirements for docks are similar to those of decks, but there are some differences related to the pilings and footers because docks are submerged in the water. When you’re planning your dock’s construction in St. Pete, consider whether or not you want to include any accessories, such as:


  • Railings
  • Benches
  • Lighting
  • Ladder
  • Fish cleaning station
  • Boat docking area


Any of the above will influence your choices for your dock’s foundation pilings.


Function and Importance of a Strong Foundation


A foundation is intended to provide structural support for all types of construction projects. A foundation’s function is to transfer some of the structure’s full load down into the soil and rock layers underground. Factors that affect the load-bearing capacity of a structure’s foundation include:


  • Ground condition
  • Characteristics of the structure
  • Quality of materials used to set the foundation
  • The proximity of nearby structures
  • Noise level and vibration in the area
  • Presence of water or other elements
  • Overall construction budget


Piled foundations—also known as deep-set foundations—are made of concrete, steel, or timber formed into long columns and driven deep into the ground. A piled foundation is typically driven to a depth of three times its breadth. This type of foundation is vital for a St. Pete dock because its foundation sits in water; the surrounding soil will not be able to prevent excessive settlement without deep-set driven foundation pilings.


Create a Strong Foundation


Foundation pilings are considered one of the best engineering solutions available in St. Pete. Advantages include:


  • Cost-effective
  • Exceptionally strong and reliable
  • The wide range of materials available allows for various specifications for structural strength
  • The relative ease of installation as the soil surrounding them is displaced (unlike other driven foundations that require manual removal of the soil before installation)


To ensure you get many years of enjoyment out of your St. Pete dock, the integrity of its foundation pilings is crucial. Three critical steps will help protect your investment:


  • Prevent rot: If you choose timber pilings, have them coated with wood rot prevention chemicals before installation.


  • Create a water barrier: A protective barrier should be applied to your foundation pilings to prevent gradual water damage. Pile sleeves are available for this purpose.


  • Protect the above-water portion of your foundation pilings: Piling caps will prevent undue exposure to inclement weather and the sun’s UV light.


St. Pete Dock Foundation Pilings Specialists


The Florida dock foundation pilings specialists at Priority Marine will help you make the most out of your St. Pete dock investment. Call today at 727-447-1373.



Preparing for Dock Construction Success in Tampa

When considering dock construction, you have to decide on many factors before installation. First, think about the primary purpose and desired function of your dock. You will also want to consider the location, the materials, and how you can make sure your new fixture lasts a long time. When you take these factors into consideration, you can increase the usefulness and longevity of your investment. If you need help, the professionals at Priority Marine in Tampa are a reliable source for marine construction.

Boat Dock: Primary Use and Function

How do you plan to use your pier? Do you have a boat that you want to anchor to your structure? Do you want to install a boat lift? Or is it a simple way to enjoy the waterfront life in Tampa? Regardless, the purpose and function will alter the dock construction process. There are many styles you can choose from, including fixed and floating.

  • Fixed structures rely on underwater supports called pylons for stability. They do not move with the currents and are a better option for those who want to use a boat.
  • Floating structures don’t use pylons or any other anchoring support beneath the water. This means they sway and bob with the waves, although they are anchored at the shoreline so they don’t float away.


When choosing the location for your dock construction project in Tampa, you should consult with professional marine contractors. You’ll need a permit for a new dock, and a professional can ensure that you get everything you need so that you don’t encounter any problems. DIY may be tempting, but the pros have the experience, tools, and connections necessary.

Location is critical because you need to be able to access land and water while making sure it can be used for its intended purpose, such as a boat launch. You’ll need to consider tidal patterns, property lines, and water content.


There are many materials you can use in dock construction, but the best options include stainless steel and vinyl. Wood tends to rot, splinter, and stain, especially when submerged in water 24/7. Vinyl and steel, on the other hand, are resistant materials that outlast and outperform others. Consider the changing water levels, the weather, and the possibility of rot and infestation when planning. The material you choose can ensure the durability and lifespan of your structure.

Consult the Professional Dock Construction Company in Tampa – Priority Marine

In Tampa Bay, Priority Marine is a professional marine contractor that offers clients peace of mind for their projects. Whether residential or commercial, Priority Marine’s skilled team helps you plan and implement your new marine structure. To learn more, call them today at (727) 447-1373 or contact them online.

We’re Expert Commercial Boardwalk Contractors

Property improvements come in all shapes and sizes. Those with waterfront homes or businesses want to get the most out of their immediate environment. Sometimes, however, access to the water is impeded by mangrove trees, sawgrass or other vegetation. Or man-made obstacles! As commercial boardwalk contractors, the experts at Priority Marine can create a beautiful structure that will weave and hover harmlessly past obstructions. Conversely, if you just want a nice boardwalk along the water to enjoy your St. Petersburg sunsets, we’re the folks to call. Because beautification is our business, Priority Marine will make that dream a thrilling reality.

The St. Petersburg Area Is Our Home, Too

Among the many services we provide at Priority Marine are dock, deck and seawall construction. With more than 40 years in the St. Petersburg area, we know the bays and the estuaries, the creeks and the canals. We know the tides and the currents. We know about sediments, and rock bottoms, and the delicate balance that can exist between them. Sinking pilings – in the right place – is both a scientific and mathematic task. Our area’s unpredictable weather is a factor, too. Priority Marine does it all. Therefore, as commercial boardwalk contractors, we’re supremely qualified; we’ll strategize the best boardwalk for you and your location – taking into account your budget all the while.

Materials used in boardwalk construction and decking can range from tough, durable wood to economically-viable Cellular PVC. Priority Marine also uses Trex, a textured composite made from wood and other recycled materials. Most commercial boardwalk contractors recommended the use of Ipe wood. This strong South American hardwood is not only attractive, but it’s durable and resistant to rotting and mildew. Also known as Brazilian Walnut, Ipe is considered virtually maintenance-free. No other wood matches its legendary longevity. St. Petersburg residents who live by the water and want to go that extra step – by installing a boardwalk – always call Priority Marine.

Why Commercial Boardwalk Contractors Use Ipe

Ipe has numerous characteristics that make it the most attractive wood to commercial boardwalk contractors. It’s scratch, warp and sag resistant; whatever Mother Nature throws at it, for the most part, won’t make a difference. It’s burn resistant, rot resistant and insect resistant; even under the harshest of St. Petersburg conditions.  Also, Ipe is beautiful, with stunning grain patterns, and will make your waterfront boardwalk the envy of your friends and the talk of your neighborhood.

Call or email the experts at Priority Marine today, at (727) 447-1373. We get the job done – and get it done right!

The Most Common Dock Repairs You Will Need

St. Petersburg residents that own waterfront property likely also own a boat that has a dock for access. Even if you do not own a boat, you may still have a pier or jetty that you use for other activities, like fishing or enjoying the sunset. Regardless of what you use it for, your structure is likely to need maintenance, lest you require dock repairs. Repairs for marine structures are not uncommon, but it is better to prepare by knowing ahead of time where potential weaknesses lie.

1. Rotting Wood

Many St. Petersburg residents prefer the look and usability of wood for their marine structures, but they are the most susceptible to issues like rot and warping. Because the marine environment can be extremely harsh, wood erodes and takes on water easily. Whether exposed to salt or fresh water, wood can only handle so much, and after time it rots away. Rotting wood compromises the structural integrity and requires professional dock repairs to fix.

2. Cracking/Warping

Whether your wharf is made of wood, steel, aluminum, or another material, every substance is susceptible to the damage that outdoor marine environments cause. Combined with the bright St. Petersburg sun, even steel can start to warp when exposed to the elements for too long without maintenance. When there is cracking, warping, chipping, or breakage, damaged docks are dangerous. You need to make sure that you have professional dock repairs fix the problems or else you run the risk of injury or further damage to your boat or jetty.

3. Float Repairs

If your pier relies on floats to remain above water, then you know the floats themselves are prone to damage. Fixing them can be difficult because removing one out of the water to fix can cause the rest to become unstable. If you remove any to work on, be sure that no one attempts to use or walk on the wharf until everything is returned to the proper place. Floats are susceptible to cracks and leaks, and if the hole or damage cannot be patched up, then you may need to replace the entire float. These dock repairs can run from $20 to $50 per square foot, on average, in St. Petersburg.

Call Priority Marine for Expert Dock Repairs

When you need expert dock repairs in the St. Petersburg area, trust Priority Marine. The professionals there have been helping boaters in Tampa Bay with all of their marine construction needs for decades and are a trusted source for quality work. To learn more about their services or to schedule an appointment, call them today at 727-447-1373.

Wood Decking for Boat Docks in Clearwater

Clearwater residents thinking of investing in custom wood decking for boat docks can avoid installation issues by working with contractors. Whether you need a custom boat dock installed or refinished, we provide marine construction that lasts, while looking great while also increasing property value. A great decking material choice that accomplishes both of the above requirements is wood decking. It is a highly popular choice among many boaters, fishers and anyone who wants to enjoy their waterfront property. The Tampa Bay areas of Clearwater, St Pete, Sarasota, Bradenton, Tampa as well as Ft. Myers provide many opportunities in wood decking for boat docks to utilize because of the wide variety of waterways that are present there.

Wood decking for boat docks offers waterfront property owners many benefits that range from the look and feel of the material to the various restoration options that can be used. Professional contractors can also better advise clients and turn their wood decking ideas into reality. Wood’s grain patterns are exclusive to each cut and thus can provide unparalleled beauty. Although there are many different types of wood decking boards, choosing treated lumber is imperative to reduce natural wear and rot. If the decking receives proper maintenance, then it can provide waterfront property owners in Tampa, Clearwater, St Pete, Sarasota, Bradenton, Ft. Myers and more with many years of enjoyment.

Other Types of Boat Docks

Besides wood, there are other options that Clearwater residents can invest in with differing benefits. Composite materials are excellent for those wanting an environmentally conscious choice. Trex decking affords buyers a stronger and more resilient surface. The composite material is made from plastics and wood fibers. The plastic in the composite deck boards makes it resistant to the corrosive salt water and less likely to warp. Using composite wood decking for boat docks can mean spending less on repairs and upkeep.

Get More from Your Marine Contractors Today

If you are curious as to the cost of a boat deck, then do not hesitate to reach out today. Searching through online estimates will only get you so far and may be misleading. Only by working with a professional can you receive an accurate estimation as to the cost of your dock. We provide our clients with the best wood decking for boat docks, options, and support. Property owners looking for those unique options to increase the quality of their dock can also purchase boat dock accessories from us. We even offer a choice between stationary and floating boat docks. Regardless of if you need more information on the specifics of what is a boat dock or repairs to existing structures, Priority Marine can help you. Clearwater residents can go online or call (727) 447-1373 today to begin improving their marine construction infrastructure today.