When that first ray of spring light finally breaks through, the first thought is to get the boat back on the water. But pulling your boat out of its winter hibernation requires some initial maintenance work. De-winterizing your boat, engine and trailer before hitting the lake ensures that everything will be in top shape, which will help make that maiden voyage of the summer stress free.
Here are some initial steps to prepping your boat for summer days.
Clean it out. After pulling your boat out of storage, the first thing to do is give it a thorough cleaning, wipe down the interior, vacuum the carpet, and power wash the exterior. As you’re cleaning, do a visual check for any gouges or cracks in the hull, loose or missing rivets, or any other signs of damage that need your attention.
Check for supplies. Make sure to restock your boat with all the essential supplies you may have removed for storage. This can include everything from seats, life vests, first aid kits, fire extinguishers and flares (don’t forget to check the expiration date on flares, inspect the anchor ropes, and certify extinguishers if needed).
Check the engine. If it wasn’t changed before the winter, make sure to change the engine oil, replace your oil filer, and check the out-drive oil as well. Install fresh spark plugs in the engine. Don’t forget to check the battery of your boat. Use a battery tester to check out amps and volts. When you first launch the boat, make sure there are no leaks evident, paying careful attention to the bilge area. Finally, make sure the engine shifts smoothly from forward, neutral and reverse.
Trailer. Often overlooked in the de-winterization process, checking the trailer over is a good idea as well. Make sure to visually check the entire trailer, looking for bends, cracked welds, and check the springs and suspensions for wear and tear or faults. Go over the rollers or bunks and replace any parts that aren’t working. Finally, check that the winch strap is in good shape and doesn’t have any signs of fraying or unevenness.
Connecticut-based Byrnes Agency has you covered. We specialize in Boat Insurance throughout New London County, Middlesex County & Windham County, CT with all the features that matter most to you. Contact us today for more information about our Boat Insurance programs.