As winter weather fades into the distance, boat season awaits, offering the excitement of the open water.
It may only be March, but the warmer waters of spring and summer are already calling to you. That means getting your boat out of storage and ready to go. If you’re a long-time boat owner you probably know the drill; but, if you’re a first-time boat owner or a novice, these tips will help you cover the essentials.
- Make a Thorough Inspection
Tucked away in storage for the winter, your boat is safe and sound. That doesn’t mean it is going to come out of storage ready to roll. Check out hinges, hoses, lighting, and any moving parts. These parts can dry and may not operate at full capacity. Grease the moving parts with oil and change any lights that have burned out. You don’t want to wait and do this on the open water.
- Engine and Battery Maintenance
One of the first things boat owners learn is to drain the fluids before storing. Now is the time to put them back in. Change the oil, power steering, and oil filter, and lubricate any of the engine’s moving parts. Double check your fuel lines and also check out the spark plugs, as they could have gone dead while being stored. Run a diagnostic on your battery to ensure full working capacity. It might even be time to consider a higher performance marine battery, depending on how you’re planning to use your boat.
- A Clean Boat Runs Better
A shiny, clean boat is not just about looks. A thorough cleaning also protects the boat’s surface. Do a once over with your power-washer, vacuum up the inside, and clean any of the inside surfaces. Cleaning your boat regularly helps to maintain better functioning of its parts.
- Kill the Corrosion
Look for signs of corrosion, especially around the electrical connections in your boat. Even while in storage, your boat can still become corroded. If you do locate any signs of corrosion, contact a boat technician to make an assessment and recommendation.
- Safety Equipment is a Must-Have
Safety equipment should be checked, too, even if it has been in storage with your boat. Check your safety list to make sure you have your preservers, life jackets, and other safety equipment. Make sure your life jackets are the right fit and that your fire extinguisher still has pressure. Check your flares to ensure they are still working. An emergency medical kit is always a good idea to keep on board.
Boating can be exciting and rewarding, whether for fishing, racing, family outings, or more. Just remember that you’ll enjoy it so much more if you are confident that your boat if functioning at optimum performance.
And if you discover a new marine battery is on your to-do list, consider the affordable and reliable Continental flooded marine line, as well as the national brands for AGM marine in Optima and Odyssey. Contact your local Continental Battery dealership to get top quality, reasonably-priced marine batteries, and accessories. Find the location nearest you.