Boat Care and Maintenance Tips From the Experts

Boats can be a fantastic way to relax on the water and enjoy the views. While they can be a little expensive, they can also last for a whole lifetime, if you spend the time to take care of it and maintain it. Here are some boat care and maintenance tips from the experts to ensure that your boat lasts as long as possible.

Take it Out Of the Water

If there is going to be an extended period of time where you will not be using the boat, it is highly recommended that you take it out of the water. Why would you do this? There are two major reasons why the boat should come out.

1. Wintertime

If you are in a northern part of the country that gets affected by winter, you cannot afford to have your boat in the water when the lake begins to freeze. This will cause major damage to your boat and can potentially break it. How can you go about getting it out? The experts at recommend using a boat lift. Boat lifts will take your boat out of the water and elevate it on a platform. From there, you can take the necessary steps to close it up or move it to a new location for storage over the winter. This will ensure that it stays safe.

Source: Stingray Point Boat Works

2. Taking a Break from Boating

The other reason to use a boat lift and take it out of the water would be if you are planning to take a break with the boat. While boats are made to be able to withstand heavy currents and water, you might notice that certain areas of it slowly begin to develop rust and the color begins to fade on those areas that are affected by the water.

Not only that, but leaving your boat on the water will also subject it to all the elements and allow bugs and spiders to come on board and infest it. Your boat is only getting damaged if you are leaving it in the water for months at a time without using it in any way. Take it out of the water and put it back in when you finally plan on using it again.

Check the Bilge Pump

The bilge is the bottom of the boat that collects a lot of excess water when out on the lake. The pump is what removes this excess water, keeping it running smoothly and staying afloat. Without a properly working bilge pump, the water can pool up to a point where your boat actually begins to sink or runs very poorly. Check the pump hoses for debris or any blockages and ensure that it works. If the pump is old, consider installing a backup one just in case any problems strike.

Source: Wikimedia Commons

Look at the Engine

Every now and then you should be lifting the engine out of the water and taking a look at all of the aspects of it. There will be several hoses in the engine that transport gasoline around helping everything move. If there are any cracks in those hoses, they have to be replaced. Corrosion as well is something to look out for. A lot of pieces are protected by metal and if that gets eaten away, they will be exposed to the elements.

The propeller is another thing that you have to look at when cleaning the engine. Give the nut and bolt a tighten so it doesn’t come loose at all when boating. Along with this, check for any chips in the propeller itself. The more damaged the propeller is, the less efficient it will be and the more gas you will be burning each time. Grease it up and ensure that it stays in good condition.

Check the Electronics

When driving the boat, there are many instruments and electronics that you can use to find out about your speed, direction, gas level, etc. At the start of every season in your first boat ride, check to see that each gauge is working the way that it should. If there are any issues, bring it by for maintenance as you don’t want to be messing around with wirings.


Changing the Oil

Every now and then you should also be changing the oil and oil filter of the boat. Without oil, some of the mechanical parts in the boat will grind up against each other, causing a lot of damage to be done. Just give the oil level a check and if it needs anything, just add some into it.

The Battery

The last thing you want is to be out on the lake when your battery dies leaving you stranded. In order to stop this from happening, check the battery on your boat every so often. Take a multimeter to it so that you can check the charge of it and look at the terminals for any corrosion that might be building up. Batteries also deteriorate over time and become less efficient at holding their charge. If you notice the charge on it is low, it might be time for a new battery.


Extra Gas

Any boater who knows what they are doing will ensure that they are putting extra gas canisters onto their boat. While you should never be in a position where you are running your boat till empty, there might be a time where you forget to check the levels or run out while you are far away from a possible place to gas up. By bringing a few tanks on as an emergency reserve, you can make sure that no matter what, you will have gas to be able to get yourself to a marina to be topped up.

All of these are things that you have to do in order to ensure that your boat stays working as well as it should. While maintenance can be expensive, especially if you are bringing it in, it is much cheaper than the price of buying yourself a new boat. Be aware of the waters you are putting the boat into and the climate as well as that will impact how often you have to maintain certain aspects of it. Other than that, get out there and enjoy your boat.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *