Power to the dock is a necessity for Lake life, but electricity and water don’t mix. We asked local electricians what advice they’d give homeowners when it comes to their dock electricity. Grab your phone and snap a photo of the checklist below. Keep it handy, to keep your dock in ship shape for boating, swimming, and Lake fun.

Lake of the Ozarks, Photo by Lake Shots Photography

Get A Pro Inspection

Most reputable electric companies offer free dock electrical inspections. Have an electrician thoroughly inspect your dock in the spring before you launch and when you’re powering-down in the fall. Lake of the Ozarks Association of Electrical Contractors (LOZAEC) electricians go through special training and are accountable to top standards. Learn more: lozaec.org.

Dangerous wiring on a dock – not Lake of the Ozarks, Photo by Nathan Bechtold

Check The Breaker

Before hopping on the dock, check the GFCI breaker at the shoreline. If you don’t have a breaker at the shoreline, call an LOZAEC electrician immediately, to bring your dock up to code and make it safe. Never energize or reenergize the dock circuit, engage a breaker, or reset a GFCI while someone is swimming near the dock.

Look Around

Every time you’re on the dock, take a moment to visually inspect the conduit, devices, lights, and other electrical devices and connections. You’re looking for obvious signs of damage.

Wiring a dock, Photo courtesy Dissen Electric

Power Down

Turn off any unused circuits. Your dock will likely need continual power, to keep your boat lift operational (some lift controls automatically add air to the lift if it starts to drop) and your deicer running in the winter.

Phone A Friend

If you’re not going to be at the dock for awhile, ask neighbors to check it periodically, looking for anything damaged or out of order — especially after major weather events.

Unsafe dock wiring, Photo courtesy of Catalyst Electric

Teach The Newbies

Whether you have guests for the weekend or you vacation-rent your Lake home, make sure you show guests how to operate the shoreline electrical shutoff. It could save a life!