In our previous articles we have helped you figure out how to choose the best narrowboat length, tips on choosing a narrowboat stylea brief guide to hull constructionheating and water systems on narrowboats, electrics on narrowboatsnarrowboat surveys and documentation for narrowboat owners.  In this 8th in the series of buyer’s tips for people looking for a narrowboat for sale in the UK, we discuss the costs of running a narrowboat.

#9 How much does it cost to keep a narrowboat on the water?


When committing to the purchase of a canal boat, the cost of buying the boat itself is the most siginificant cost, but it is also important to consider what the costs of running a narrowboat will be yearly thereafter to help you decide if your budget can cover it.

So the following is a rough guide to your regular outgoings as a result of being a narrow boat owner.

Fixed approx costs:

  • British Waterways licence dep. on boat size £700
  • Boat Safety Certificate every four years £150
  • Insurance approx fully comprehensive £220
  • Mooring per annum in a marina approx 55ft £2,500
  • Mooring canal side approx dep. on location £,1200

Running costs:

  • Diesel heating costs approximately 70p per litre
  • Diesel propulsion is approximately £1.18 per litre
  • Pump out £10 to £15 dep. on location

    A 40 gal tank =180 litres  and an engine runs on roughly 1.5 litres per hour for a maximum of 120 hours on a full tank.


  • Annual spring engine service by an engineer £70 to £150
  • Blacking every two to three years approx £7.00 per ft

Trinity Marinas is a premier inland narrowboat sales & brokerage and canal boat marina located in the Heart of England on the beautiful Ashby Canal in Hinckley, Leicestershire within easy reach from the the main M1 motorway, and just off the A5 (Watling Street).

If you are thinking about owning a narrowboat or are interested in canal boat life, then visit us at the marina and find out more about choosing the right narrowboat to suit your needs, or give us a call on 01455 896 820.