Experts agree that downtime for your boat is tough on it. Corrosion can spread, leftover water can freeze and expand, sediments congeal from low temperatures resulting in a lot more work and cost in the Spring than necessary. We recommend a proactive approach following the manufacturer’s instructions and your own Certified Marine Mechanic’s program to minimize these costs. Key steps include:
Clean the vessel:
- Wash and wax the surfaces
- Clean windshields, trim and store canvas, preferably indoors
- Lubricate hinges, cleat mechanisms, ratchet mounts, etc.
- Check the storage areas for any moisture and dry them before shrink wrapping
Have your marine mechanic winterize your vessel including:
- Flush the cooling system and insert antifreeze
- Fill your fuel tank to avoid condensation within the system; change the filters and oil; add a stabilizer, use fogging oil.
- Ask your mechanic to inspect the trailer as well, noting any lubricants or repairs needed
- Marine batteries should be removed and stored inside
For winter storage, the best option (and the most expensive) is to place the vessel in an indoor heated facility. If this is unsuitable, shrink wrapping affords the best protection for your boat. Installing a tightly fit shrink wrapped cover with critter proof vents will ensure that everything on board is protected and remains as clean as possible during the blustery Fall, cold Winter and wet Spring!
The common sense rule is if you’re unsure of what to do, consult with the boats manufacturer, local marina and certified mechanic.