Boat Equipment Must-Dos and Boat Safety Must-Haves

August 25, 2021

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Ensure the safety and good fun of your next boat outing by taking a few, easy, but responsible steps.

Your boat is a big investment, whether you use it for fishing, sports, or family camping adventures. Taking preventive steps to check and maintain your boat’s equipment and safety features will extend your boat’s life and ensure more carefree good times on the water.

The following steps are recommended to make sure your boat action-ready.

  1. Change the engine oil at least once every season.
  2. Refer to your engine owner’s manual for the manufacturer's oil change recommendations.
  3. Before every trip, take a minute to inspect all belts and hoses; replace any that are torn or show signs of wear. Inspect all fluid levels, and oil levels. And take special care to check the condition of your boat's battery before you put her into the water. Boats need dependable power that can recharge easily. Continental Battery has the high quality battery you need.
  4. Look for any corrosion and oxidation and take preventative measures before a serious problem emerges.
  5. Check and service your transmission according to the manufacturer’s recommendations.

Taking time to carefully go through these steps could mean the difference in an exciting, fun trip and misery.

Plan for the Best. Prepare for the Worst.

Nobody plans a summer vacation or a fishing trip expecting an accident or problem, but it will put your mind at ease if you have the safety accessories and backup devices you might need just in case.

Here’s an easy checklist that will keep you out of trouble if you take it seriously and check each detail. It may sound like overkill, but isn’t it better to be prepared?                     

1) A Handheld Horn (For Backup)

2) Extra Life Vests

3) First Aid and Safety Kit

4) Fire Extinguisher

5) Paddle

6) Jump Starter / Battery Bank

7) Solar Panel (For Backup Power)

8) Dock Lines

9) Fenders

10) Anchors

11) GPS / Fish Finder

12) VHF Radio

13) Navigation Lights

14) Binoculars

16) Cooler

17) Tow Lines

18) Fishing Rod Holder and other Fishing Equipment

19) Floats and Other Swimming Equipment

20) Summer Toys

21) Grills

22) Bluetooth Speaker

23) Sunscreen

Your Safety Kit should also contain the following items:

  • Flashlight – A flashlight and extra batteries can help you see around your boat in the dark and allow you to be seen if you run out of fuel or if your craft stalls.
  • Duct tape – Spring a leak? Temporarily bandage the hole with duct tape.
  • Bucket – Even if the boat isn’t leaking, water may otherwise enter the vessel. A bucket can help you bail it out.
  • First aid kit – A properly equipped first aid kit, plus the knowledge on how to use it, is vital in case of an accident or medical emergency.
  • Whistle – As a recognized signal calling for help on the water, a waterproof whistle is another must-have.
  • Ropes – These are critical for pulling someone in who has fallen overboard, securing your craft to the dock and tying down loose items in extreme weather.
  • Mirror – A mirror or any reflective object can signal for help.
  • Garbage bags – Use them as rain ponchos and protection for items on board.

Other helpful Boating Safety Tips include:

  • Don’t overload the boat with too many people
  • Check the weather forecast before you leave
  • Check for any smell of fumes
  • Follow proper docking and anchoring procedures

Boating is hugely popular in the U.S. There are a total of 17 million recreational boats—13 million registered plus 4 million unregistered—currently in use in the United States. One in ten U.S. households owns a boat.

Happy and safe boating from Continental Battery Co.