As the sun sets on another boating season, it is time to think about preparing your boat for her time out of the water during the cooler months.
Boat Winterization is not the most enjoyable task, however it is a necessity that could save you thousands in repairs if not done at all.
You can winterize your boat by following the steps below:
- First, always consult the owner’s manual of both your boat and motor for manufacturer’s recommendations on winterization. There may be some tasks that are specific to your boat or motor.
- Treat your fuel with fuel stabilizer and run the motor for approximately 10-20 minutes to circulate.
- Fog the engine with a suitable fogging spray. Start the motor and spray the aerosol directly into the air intake until it is all gone. This protects the bearings, seals and rotating surfaces with a thin film of protective lubricant, which helps keep rust and corrosion away.
- Change the oil in the motor (while it is still warm) to remove any moisture that may be there. Moisture can lead to corrosion and engine failure.
- For inboards or stern drives, it is important to completely drain all water from the engine to avoid it from freezing. Locate the drain plug underneath the manifold and completely drain the water from the motor. Remove the water hose from the water pump and let drain.
- Remove the lubricant from the gear case and inspect the seals for any damage. If the lubricant is milky, this is an indication that the seals need to be replaced.
- Top up your fuel so that the tanks are full. This will help avoid the build-up of condensation in the tanks.
- Repair any chips, gouges or cracks in the hull. The quickest and easiest way to do this is with MagicEzy’s innovative DIY gelcoat repair products. Use 9 Second Chip Fix to fill and color holes, or Hairline Fix to seal and color stress cracks.
- The final step in winterizing your boat is to find adequate storage that protects it from the harsh weather. Ideally this would be in a climate controlled shed or garage. If this isn’t an option, you could get your boat shrink wrapped – or at an absolute minimum, cover it securely with a tarp.