Consider this before storing your boat:
- Run your boat one more time: Pay attention to any issues that need repair or replacement. Look for cracks in the hull, which can worsen over time.
- Drain your boat: Remove your boat from the water and drain the water tanks, head, and pipes.
- Give your boat a thorough cleaning: Scrub the entirety of your boat with soap and water, including the interior. Open any interior lockers, drawers, refrigerators, and freezers and clean those as well – you don’t want any surprises come springtime!
- Winterize your engine: Flush the engine (including the coolant system) with fresh water to remove any dirt and corrosion. Refill your coolant system with antifreeze, and replace the oil and all filters.
- Lubricate any moving parts: Grease the steering system and control mechanisms.
- Cover and store your boat: Keep your boat protected with a cover that can withstand brutal weather, including snow and ice! You might even consider shrink-wrapping your boat for additional protection. Just like you would with a parked car, remove any snow buildup on a regular basis during the snowy season.
Lastly, if the option is available to you, consider a boat house for storage!
Winter boat storage can be expensive if you don’t have indoor storage, and leaving it on the water can be tempting. If you store your boat in a yard, make sure you have a cover and take extra care if you leave your boat outdoors to protect it from the elements.
Leaving your boat in the water is not recommended as the risk of sinking and ice damage is high. Your boat may also be vulnerable to theft. Consider dry stack storage and boat storage units instead.
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