Are You Ready??
Hello Boaters! Both new and experienced, we anticipate a fantastic season of boating this time of year! Below are some topics of discussion to have with your servicing shop as well as some items that you can do yourself to help make the best “problem free” memories for this year’s boating season! Enjoy!
With some of my personal experience and how I have maintained my boats over the years are as such:
Change the oils and filters in the Fall- This also allows the shop to look for any items that
need addressed in the “off season”.
If its an inboard- Shaft log seals, Engine Alignment, Rudder Packing, Cutlass Bearings, just to name a few..
If it is a bottom painted boat, has it exceeded the bottom paint’s life? Most fresh water lakes depending on ph balance, temperature, and other elements, allow a top of the line bottom paint to last on avg 5 years. Some are a little less, and some last a little more. If your boat is out of the water for that, look over: sacrificial anodes, the hull for blisters, maybe consider adding those underwater lights you’ve always wanted. Or it’s also a great time to repair/replace a light if one has gone out.
Check your trim tabs and cylinders if equipped.
How do all of your thru hull fittings look?
Its also easiest and preferred by detailers to buff and wax the hull sides below the rubrail while out of the water.
In the Spring –
Change my impellor
De winterize – Yes, I mention De winterize. It could also be called “re-commission”!
But what if it is “water ready” from the service department? Well, depending on how long your off season is, there may have been a rodent in the boat that chewed on something…. Batteries need charged and water filled sometimes…. and one of the best things is: Start the boat and let it run to operating temperature.
Fill your freshwater tanks, if equipped and add a little shock tablet to keep the smell from happening.
Check all strainers for cleanliness.
Activate all systems and watch for proper water passage flow out the water discharge on all HVAC systems.
Do a test on all of your bilge and sump pumps
Are your Fire Extinguishers in working order? Do you have the proper number for the size of boat you have? Check for expiration dates as well.
Are all of your life jackets a proper fit for you and your Family? Are all the buckles in working order?
Do you have a throwable Personal Floatation Device? (PFD)
What are the condition or age of your Flares?
Alternate sounding device? Where is it ? What condition is it in? (Whistle or Disposable air horn)
Did you know you have what’s called a “usable life” for your carbon monoxide detector? This seems to show up on many Yacht Surveys and an easy one to avoid. The life is 5 years. Do they work longer than that? Yes, in most instances. But there’s a reason there has been a date put on it. **pro tip** also have a secondary battery back up placed on your boat such as one at a home improvement story that is battery operated (self contained).
Has your halon (fire suppression) been certified? Another one that pops up on surveys. Depending on how remote your Marina is, this can be challenging to get done. Usually the same company that checks/certifies the marinas fire extinguishers can do this. you may have to have the shop disconnect the tank and hand it to them or you possible could do remove it yourself.
There is a new rule/law coming into place regarding the replacing of certain factory fire suppression with an updated product. (Google this). Or, I may blog about it in a later episode.
As always, safety first! Remember boating changes lives, and let us know if you have a need!