5. We Need Backup
The cleat assembly should come with a backing plate, and you should be able to access the underside of the deck so you can tighten the backing nuts. Ideally, the nuts should be a locking style so they’ll hold without coming loose.
6. Stay Dry
Retractable cleats should come with a water-catching cup and drain hose that leads to the bilge or a small through-hull to a self-bailing deck. The assemblies aren’t watertight, and you don’t want water randomly dripping into sections of the cabin or other areas beneath the fitting.
7. Provide for Heavy Lifting
If you plan to lift the boat by the cleat, buy one designated for this purpose. Manufacturers designate such cleats as lifting models.