Prepping your boat for winter storage
It’s still way too nice out there to put the boat away, that’s if you ever do as some of us really enjoy the cooler weather.
If you do let your boat hibernate in the winter here’s some great tips to keep it in good condition. You don’t want to pull out a smelly mouldy boat when summer hits again.
Mould and mildew are the enemy, the spores are everywhere and a cool, dark, poorly ventilated area are just what they want. If you have areas that are soiled they’re going to love it even more. For this reason, it’s very important to thoroughly clean and disinfect all areas before storing. It helps to use the humidity absorbing products for stored boats (get these at your local chandlery or online).
Here are some pointers to keep your boat tip top while in storage.
- Wash and wax your boat.
- Wash and disinfect carpets, floors and all surfaces.
- Remove cushions and other items that are mildew prone and store in a dry well-ventilated area.
- Make sure during your last trip out you note any necessary repairs and maintenance, sort out your repairs now if possible, when the gorgeous weather returns you want to pull your boat out and go. You don’t want to be fussing while everyone else is enjoying the water.
- Any cracks in the hull can worsen during storage too so fix them asap.
- It’s a good idea to remove electronics, including your battery and store in a warm and dry place. Clean your battery terminals and give them a grease. You can also give your battery a good charge and check fluid levels.
- To avoid engine trouble you can top up your fuel tank and add a fuel stabiliser, make sure to run the engine for a good 15 mins to make sure the additives reach the fuel already in the fuel lines and engine.
- Check your engine oil and replace filters, you can also flush the coolant system with water and if necessary add antifreeze.
- Another good idea is to run non-toxic antifreeze through the intake lines, y-valve, macerator and discharge hose, Drain your fresh water tanks and water heater, and then you should add a non-toxic antifreeze to your water tank and pump it through the plumbing, including ice makers, A/C pumps, sump pumps, fish wells, bilge pumps, and that shower on the transom.
Wow, alot of work but oh so worth it, come summer you’ll be ahead of the rest and you know you’ve done your absolute best to keep your boat in top condition.