Are you settling down on dry land for the winter, and worried about how your boat will survive? Boat maintenance is much easier than you think, and with a few tips, you can make your boat can last longer and prevent costly repairs in the long run.
In addition, you do not want to open it up next season and find a multitude of problems that have occurred while in storage. Below, we give you our top 5 tips for boat maintenance.
- Clean Thoroughly
The most obvious and most important tip is to clean the boat thoroughly. Seats, hardware, top, and bottom sides all need to be washed. All onboard equipment like ropes, life jackets, and the engine should also be cleaned.
As you do the wash, you can inspect the boat for any bigger problems. These may include cracks, rust, or bubbles on the surface of the boat. Before you store the boat away, make sure it is dry.
Any problems you do find should be addressed immediately and not left until the next season. Weather conditions may exasperate the problem, or you may forget about them until the next time you need to use it.
- Do a Boat Maintenance Inspection
When conducting the wash and inspection, you should pay attention to some very important pieces of equipment. The first is the propellor, and any knocks or dents may mean you need to replace it before the next use.
The second is any seals around hatches. Check they have not worn away or deteriorated. If so, you may need to work on rebedding boat hatches before the next season comes around.
- Change the Lubricants
A little boat engine maintenance goes a long way, and you can do this by replacing the major lubricants in the many parts. Firstly, make sure the boat is dry and clean. Then add a boat lubricant to any moving parts, such as the hinges, switches, mounts, and propellors.
Next, replace the oil in your engine. You do not want old oil sitting in the motor for a full season. Run the engine a few time so it warms, drain the old oil and replace with a fresh amount.
- Check the Anchor
While the anchor itself can last an eternity, the parts around it will not. It is worth checking them and looking to see if they need replacing before storage. Check the chain and windlass for signs of corrosion and weakness.
- Store It Properly
The final piece of maintenance is to store the boat correctly, so it does not take damage from the weather or get stolen. Anything that can easily be removed from the boat, like sails, life jackets, navigation systems, and recreation items, should be stored and locked in a dry place.
Once you have done this, cover your boat, even if it is a garage or dry dock. Use a weather-resistant tarp or cover, tying it down tightly. Make sure you have a tent-shaped structure, so that water does not pool on the top of the covering in the event of rain.
Treat It Properly
Finally, remember to treat your boat properly and use it with care when out on the water. Pushing the engine and its limitations will result in more problems, and this will cost money to repair.
If you enjoyed our tips on boat maintenance then we have a lot of other articles you would enjoy. Visit our blog so we can give you even more handy tips on maintenance for outdoor equipment and the home.
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