Summer has come to an end. The days are getting shorter and soon there will be a chill in the air. It’s time to prepare your boat for its yearly hibernation. Winterizing your boat is a necessary step to protect your investment and to insure that it will be ready for the upcoming summer season. Here a few things to consider when winterizing your pride and joy.
1. Give It A Good Cleaning
Take the time to give the trailer, boat and engine a detailed cleaning. By removing all the dirt and grime now your boat will be sparkling clean when the cover is removed in the spring. Consider removing all life vest, ski ropes, seats, electronics or any other equipment and store them inside your garage or storage building. This will prevent these items from getting wet and it will prevent them from being stolen.
2. Protect the Motor
The biggest risk to your boat during the winter months is frozen water. You want to make sure that all water is removed from the engine. Coat the entire engine body with fogging oil to prevent moisture from adhering to parts and causing corrosion.
Make sure that you have a full tank of fuel. This will prevent condensation from forming in the tank during the winter months. Add a manufactured approved fuel stabilizer to the tank.
4. Bilges and Livewells
Thoroughly clean and dry all bilges and livewells. Add a small amount of antifreeze to these areas as a preventative measure. Remember to thoroughly wash and clean these areas before using them in the spring.
5.Check the Hull
Do a visual inspection of the hull looking for cracks, chips, holes and weak joints. Make repairs as necessary.
6. Cover the Boat
Figure out a way to cover the boat. There are several good options that you can consider. Place the boat in dry storage or shrink wrap it. At a minimum cover the boat with a durable large tarp.
Winterizing your boat is not a difficult task. It is an important task that needs to be done to protect your investment and to insure you have years of fun on the lake. Always consult your owner’s manual prior to doing any work on your boat and consult with local boat professional prior to working on your boat.
Disclaimer: Always consult your owner’s manual prior to preforming any work. Also consult a professional boat mechanic to insure the work is preformed to manufacturer specifications.