De-Winterizing Your Boat

Spring is here and you are getting ready to uncover your boat and getting ready take a dip in the water. You don’t want to be that boat at the dock sitting there with an anxious group of people looking at you, waiting for you to start the boat.  You are sitting there turning the key, and the motor is whirr whirr and nothing.

Check Those Fluids:

OIL – If you did not change the engine oil when you parked your boat for the winter, this would be the ideal time to change the oil and the oil filter.

BATTERY – Check the terminals for corrosion, connect the cables and wipe everything clean. Top off the water if your battery takes water. If it’s dry, it most likely is bad. Check everything before you get to the docks.

COOLING – Depending on your climate, most people drain their cooling system to prevent any freezing problems, rinse it out and fill it back up. Check the hoses for wear or cracks in the lines.

FUEL – Depending on your fuel system and boats recommendations. Many people will top off their tanks to prevent any moisture and condensation issues forming in the tank. It’s not fun to have to deal with condensation forming in the tank. It would be a great time to change the fuel filter and the hoses are all snug and no cracks in the lines. Many climates can cause these lines to become brittle with the heat changes.

BELTS – Check your belts and tighten and or replace any that look worn or brittle. The Alternator belt will usually wear faster than all the others.

OTHER – Review this list of items as well. Spark plugs, engine lubrication, all hoses, power steering, bilge pump, drain plug, rudder and shafts, prop, horn, VHF radio, trim, floatation devices, fire extinguisher expiration date and you anchor is on board.

All boats are different and these are suggestions for de-winterizing your boat.
Always follow the instructions in your boat owner’s manual and consult a local boat mechanic.