Tips for Taking Your Boat Out of Seasonal Storage
When you are ready to use your boat for the season, you will have to take it out of storage, which may seem a little daunting. But here are a few tips to make the process quick and easy. First, make sure to do a thorough inspection of the entire boat. Look for cracks, dents, and scratches, and make sure all bolts and screws are tight. Your boat was stored safely away when you were not using it, but it is still essential that you make sure everything looks just as you left it and all parts are in working order. Change the oil and oil filter and lubricate any moving parts if you did not do it prior to winterization. Look at the fuel lines to make sure they have not been damaged, and test your spark plugs to ensure they have not died.
Once your boat is out of storage, give it a thorough cleaning to remove any built-up dust or grime. This will not only keep it looking fresh but will also protect its surface and make all parts last longer. While you are cleaning, keep an eye out for corrosion, especially around any electrical connections. Corrosion in any part of your boat can lead to danger, so be sure to contact a professional to assess any damage. From here, replace the bilge drain plug, inspect the zincs, and replace them if you need to. Double-check the bilge pump and bilge circuit, and the automatic switch to make sure they are in working order.
Finally, make sure to check that all your safety equipment is in working order. Check your fire extinguisher's pressure and ensure that life jackets and life preservers are usable. Visual distress signals like flares and navigation lights are important to have on hand, and, depending on the size of your boat a bell or whistle is required. And always consult your owner's manual to see if there are instructions that are specific to your model of boat. If you can make sure your boat is in working order and ready to get on the water as soon as you take it out of storage, you will have less to worry about later.