Liferaft Servicing
Equipment Maintenance

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It is important for all rafts to be serviced by trained personnel. This ensures the latest updates and modifications are added to your liferaft. SOLAS Liferafts are required to be serviced annually.

Upgrades can be usful. For example you could be a leisure user who now wishes to get the vessel commercial MCA Coded. We can help with this.

Commercial Liferaft Servicing

Commercial Liferaft servicing means either a raft on coded MCA vessel or a SOLAS liferaft. We organise servicing for the following SOLAS liferafts:

  • Lalizas SOLAS Throw over
  • Lalizas SOLAS Davit launch
  • Lalizas SOLAS Open Reversible
  • HAF SOLAS - All makes
  • Youlong
  • Arimar
  • Duarry - All makes
  • Zodiac
  • RFD

All commercial SOLAS Liferafts require servicing annually. The cylinder needs attention every 5 years. We guarantee to service any commercial SOLAS liferaft within 7 days as a maximum. If for any reason that can't be completed, we will issue a free hire raft to the same specification as being serviced.

The raft is pressure tested and a number of checks are completed to ensure the raft complies. The internal pack is checked and items changed where necessary.

The raft is given a full certificate for another year with the manufacturer's stamp.

MCA Coded Vessel Servicing

Coded vessels are required to have their rafts serviced annually or three years depending on the type of raft and the method packed. All valise liferafts are to be serviced annually, whether ORC or ISO 9650-1 spec. ISO 9650-1 Group A liferafts in containers are allowed to be serviced every three years. We service / organise servicing for the following makes:

  • Seacurity
  • Waypoint
  • AWN
  • Plastimo
  • Lalizas
  • Sea-Air
  • Avon
  • Lifeguard
  • Seago
  • Bombard
  • Zodiac

All commercial ISO liferafts in containers can now be serviced every three years. Typically the cylinder needs attention every 10 years. We guarantee to service any coded vessels equipment within 10 days as a maximum. If for any reason that can't be completed, we will issue a free hire raft to the same specification as being serviced.

It is important that the correct, in-date equipment is placed in the raft. There are far too many cheap plastic items put into liferafts that should the need arise, probably wouldn't work. We use only high specification parts. All our batteries are heavy duty known branded batteries, all our LED torches are 'tough' torches and our TPA's are aluminium not plastic!


Whether an ISO raft or a SOLAS raft, the servicing is ultimately the same. The SOLAS rafts have a slightly more structured service shedule set out by the IMO where as the ISO rafts are purely set out by the manufacturer. The service consists of three parts. Liferaft service, pack change and re-pack/certification. During the service the following is inspected:


  • Seams
  • Water pockets
  • Floor
  • Arch / canopy
  • Lights
  • Safety lines
  • Liferaft pressure Test
  • Pressure valves
  • Cylinder weight
  • Op head reset with new 'O' Rings where required

Pack change
(Expired items only)

  • Flares (various)
  • Sea sick pills
  • Water
  • Torch batteries and spares
  • Food
  • Pump
  • Paddles
  • Radar reflector (checked)
  • First aid kit
  • Lights
  • Torch & batteries
  • Glue / repair kits

Re-pack /

  • Deflate
  • Attach cylinder
  • Fold
  • Arm the raft
  • Re-pack
  • Seal / band the raft
  • Certificate
  • Workshop sheet


Whether used for commercial operations, crusing or long/short distance racing, it is important to make sure your raft is serviced to the highest standard, using genuine parts

ORC Liferaft Servicing

ORC type of Liferaft has been around for many years. These are typically the lower end of the specification on rafts and tend to be used more for the private boater and inshore sailing. This is normally extended to cross channel and trips of similar distance. The materials they are made of are the same as the ISO or SOLAS rafts in some cases, but not made to an ISO specification. This means they tend not to have inflatable boarding ramps, lights or thermal floors. They also have less equipment inside. The advantage of these liferafts are they are normally lighter and more compact which makes them great for the short distance cruiser.

Examples of ORC rafts are the likes of Plastimo Cruiser rafts or Lalizas Leisure liferafts. These can still be purchased from us and are widely available as a cost effective option. These rafts are always being updated with the latest valves and fittings.

ORC rafts typically come with serveral pack types.

  • Standard
  • RORC
  • RORC +
  • E Pack (being phased out)
  • SOLAS B packs (typically used for older MCA coded vessels)

Upgrades & Accessories

There are various liferaft accessories and upgrades that are available. These range from upgrading the pack inside the raft to adding a grab bag for longer distance cruises or upgrading for Atlantic races.

Customers tend to add various items such as reading glasses, copies of official documents and medications.

ISO Liferaft Upgrades

  • Increase to a more than 24hr pack - This containers items such as food, water more flares and first aid kits.
  • Add personal items such as Reading Glasses and Passport photocopies
  • Electronic equipment - These range from PLB's (Personal Locating Beacon), SARTs, LED Flare and VHF radio

ORC Liferaft Upgrades

  • Upgrade from Standard pack to ORC - This adds flares, sea sick pills, torch and spare batteries
  • Upgrade from ORC to ORC Plus - This, in addition to the ORC spec adds rocket flares and water
  • Upgrade from ORC Plus to E Pack - This adds food, water and a small First Aid kit
  • Upgrade from E Pack to SOLAS B - This adds an inflatable radar reflector, smoke flares, TPA's and first aid kit.

General additions

  • Universal Cradle - Adjustable, fitting most rafts from 4-12 Person. These can be deck mounted or pushpit mounted
  • Liferaft retaining strap - This type of strap can be used in conjuntion with an HRU (Hydrostatic Release Unit)
  • Liferaft container colour - We now offer almost any colour of liferaft container. This is an extra cost but has proved popular.
  • Change to a valise
  • Change to a container

If there any other accessories you would like to discuss please call the workshop on 023 8140 1112

Universal Safety Ltd

Unit 3-4
Midas Business Park
Coal Park Lane
SO31 7GW

Opening times:

Mon to Fri - 0800-1700
Sat - Closed
Sun - Closed

Sales - 023 8140 1111 Workshop - 023 8140 1112 Accounts - 023 8140 1113

Technical advice or if you have a raft in for service

Commercial or leisure liferaft hire:

Sales and to book a service slot:

Accounts payable/receivable:

Aviation liferaft and lifejacket servicing:

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