Boat Safety Examiner (BSS)

Renewing your BSS certificate shouldn't be a hassle. We offer a prompt and friendly service to guide you through the process and ensure everything is ship-shape.
Overhead photo of man repairing a boat

Your Boat Safety Scheme BSS certificate needs renewing every four years.

Having a valid Boat Safety Scheme BSS Certificate ensures you are complying with your boat licence conditions, insurance policy and mooring agreement. If yours is expiring this year be sure to book your BSS Boat Safety Examination in plenty of time.

When to book your BSS examination

You can book an examination 2 months before your existing certificate expires and not lose any period of validity. If your boat passes, the new certificate will be forward dated. If there is any work required you will have time to put things right before the certificate expires. Bear in mind the spring and autumn are busy times for BSS examinations.

Contact us now us for a prompt, friendly service in South Wales, West Midlands and South West England UK or fill in the form at the bottom go the page and we will get in touch with you. 

You can find out more about the BSS examination and how to prepare your boat for one here.

When you book an examination we will go through a checklist with you to understand if there are any preparations you need to make before the day of examination.

On the day:

Please allow 1-3 hours for an examination depending on the size or complexity of your boat. 

If your boat passes all requirements the certificate will be sent to you by email. 

If your boat does not pass we will talk through all the checks that failed on the day and you will receive a full report by email. You then have 3 months to carry out the work required and arrange a re-examination. 

A row of narrowboats moored up for the evening. Brecknock Boat Services

The area we cover


If it has an engine, or a fuel burning appliance; it has some sort of accommodation cabin and you are required to licence it, then yes, it probably does. Contact your licensing authority to be sure.

No, but you will need to ensure I can gain access to the boat and that everything I need to see has been made accessible.  Depending on the circumstances it may be worthwhile if you or someone acting on your behalf could be present. We can talk it all through when you book the examination.

I will send you a report detailing the points where it did not meet the requirements (and I’ll talk it through with you so that everything is clear.) You then have three months to do whatever is needed and arrange for me to come back and check those points again. After three months has elapsed the boat will need another full examination.

A boat can be examined at any time during the four year period of the certificate but new certificate can only be forward dated by a maximum two months. If you are selling your boat it might make sense to have a new certificate.

You should think in terms of at least 2-3 hours for the examination. If I think it’s going to take longer I’ll let you know.

Examinations are £200-£250 depending on size and complexity plus travelling costs if they’re applicable. First re-examination is free but travelling costs may be charged.

No. But examiners are expected to be rigorous, diligent and methodical in the way they carry out the examination. You may find the process to takes longer than you have experienced in the past and the increasing cost of examinations reflects this.