Why “NMMA-Certified” is important when buying a boat

There are lot’s of stickers on new boats, but there is one that is the most import to look for when purchasing a new boat, the “NMMA-certified using ABYC standards” logo. The warning, hazard and instructional stickers are important too, but when purchasing, make sure to look for the NMMA logo. We’ll explain why this is important to you and what it means for boat buyers.

NMMA, the National Marine Manufactures Association, is an association with a vast knowledge of boat building and safety. Receiving an “NMMA-Certified” logo insures the building process has been inspected and the boat passes the highest standards for boat safety set by the industry.

There are few federal regulations for boat construction. NMMA certification goes beyond the minimum USCG (US Coast Guard) standards. To achieve NMMA Boat & Yacht Certification requires an annual inspection of each model to make sure it’s manufactured in compliance with the certified design.

Here’s a list of the requirements inspected and certified by NMMA Certification:

NMMA Federal
Inboard Engines
Marine Sanitation Devices
Electric Navigation Lights
Sound Signal Appliances
Field of Vision from the Helm
Ventilation Gasoline
Gasoline Fuel Systems
Hull Identification (H.I.N.)
A.C. & D. C. Electrical Systems
Outboard Engine Weight Table
Independent 3rd Party Inspection
LPG Systems
Carbon Monoxide Detection Systems
Storage Batteries
Glazing Materials
Electric Bilge Pumps
Portable Gasoline Fuel Systems
Inflatable Boats
Canoes and Kayaks
Ventilation Diesel
Diesel Fuel Systems
Pontoon Boats
Exhaust Systems
Steering Systems
Manual Hydraulic Steering Systems
Steering Wheels
Jet Boat Steering/Propulsion
Safety Signs and Labels
Hatches, Doors, and Port Lights
Seacocks, Thru-Hulls and Drain Plugs
Ladders, Handholds, and Rails


The NMMA Certified using ABYC Standards include 31 categories covering electrical systems, powering, flotation, steering systems, horsepower capacity, passenger and weight capacity and more. Certified boats must pass rigorous annual inspections from independent third-party inspectors. As a result, U.S. Coast Guard statistics have shown National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) Certified boats to be safer than non-certified boats.

Visit DiscoverBoating.com/certification for a current list of certified brands.