Taking your boat out for a spin in the summer is one of the best activities to do in the warmer weather.
However, if you have dealt with an especially tough winter, you’ll need to make sure you understand the proper methods of de-winterizing a boat.
Read on to learn important steps that you need to take to keep your boat running smoothly and safely and where you can find reliable boat repair services from experienced professionals.
1. Change the Oil in the Engine
What is the first step in understanding how to de-winterize a boat and to ensure that you perform the proper maintenance?
Check your engine oil and give it a quick change. Make sure that you change the outdrive oil as well.
You should also use this time to look at the fluid levels in your power steering mechanisms and top off anything that is low.
2. Check out the Gas and Fuel Lines
The last thing you want to deal with is a gas tank and lines coated in rust.
If you didn’t fill up your tank before putting it away for the winter, you may need to use an anti-corrosion agent to eliminate rust properly.
3. Examine your Belts
To master getting a boat ready for summer, you’ll need to ensure that the belts haven’t excessively worn down. This is particularly important if you dealt with an especially cold winter.
Usually, you can just run your hands along the belts to feel for any tears. Lightly push the belts to check to make sure you do not have any cracks.
In some cases, for example, if you notice a heavy amount of filth on your boat, then you may need to replace the belt. Doing so will protect the overall integrity of your boat.
4. Remember the Cooling System
When you’re de-winterizing a boat, you need to make sure that you have properly refilled your cooling system.
You should add an even mixture of antifreeze and water. If there is any of the coolant mixture left over from the winter, make sure that you have fully drained it.
While doing this, also check for leaks and look at the hoses for signs of wear.
You may need to replace the hoses or you might want to get in touch with a professional to see if they can be repaired.
5. Check Your Battery
The extreme temperatures, which are common during the winter, can be hard on your battery. The typical battery life is four to five years, but that can be shorter without proper care. Look over your battery, refill it with fresh distilled water, and check the charge. A battery that still has a strong charge should be good for the season.
You also want to look for wear and tear on the wires from the charge posts and then remove them from the charge posts. Using a small wire brush, you can clean each post by removing any dirt and rust that may have accumulated before coating them with lithium grease to avoid any further erosion.
De-Winterizing a Boat May Require Professional Assistance
We hope that you have found this post on properly de-winterizing a boat useful.
However, it’s also important to keep in mind that sometimes it’s best to call in the professionals for assistance.
This is especially true if you need to repair or replace parts or if your boat has been severely damaged during the winter.
We can help. Get in touch with us to request a service or repair on your boat.
Orange County Dockside Service is based in Newport Beach, CA and serves the Orange and Los Angeles Counties from Dana Point to Marina Del Rey. We specialize in mechanical repair, topside maintenance, fiberglass repair and restoration, bottom cleaning and antifouling, electronics installations, rigging, and much more.