The care and maintenance of a boat are very similar to caring for a car. Maintaining your boat’s condition isn’t difficult however, it does require commitment and consistency. As with cars boats will require certain kinds of maintenance during certain points and after use.
Follow this link for a complete checklist for maintaining your boat, quick suggestions for keeping your boat in good condition, and tips on scheduling to have a scheduled service.
Boat Maintenance Checklist
When you buy a boat it is important to have an action plan for maintaining it. Review your current skills and knowledge. What type of work do you already know how to do, and which tasks should you get help from a professional?
To keep your boat running For maintenance on your boat, follow the following steps:
- Test your electronics
- Test your lights
- Make sure you check the levels of fluids like power steering and coolant
- Change the oil Inspect the propeller
- Examine the gas tank, fuel lines, and the engines for corrosion, leaks, or cracks
- Verify that the railing is secure
- Make sure you’ve got all the safety equipment you need.
- Check the belts and other engine components
- Examine the battery’s charge
- Get your boat detailed
Simple ways to maintain a boat
Wash and wax
One of the best ways to improve the performance of your vessel is to keep the fiberglass hull clean and well-lubricated. The coating of fiberglass is chalky when it’s not waxed on a regular basis. It may also be beneficial to remove the previous coating prior to applying a fresh layer of wax. Unlike cars, boats lack a clear coat so proper waxing is vital to the durability of your watercraft.
Without a wax sealant in place to protect the boat, it will oxidize quickly and cost much more to fix than it would get it properly waxed up front. Cleansing your boat both from inside to out will stop the build-up of mold. Mold can be a scourge and it’s best to wash your boat on a regular basis than trying to control the spread of mold. Avoid using harsh chemicals to clean your boat as they can ruin your gel coat. Regularly cleaning your boat once or twice each year is not just a way to keep your boat looking great it will also ensure that everything is working properly.
Wipe Down Your Boat
After a successful day on the water, take an old towel and clean the boat clean. Lingering moisture can contribute to the growth of mold, mildew, corrosion, stains, and many other problems. Drying off any excess moisture can help your boat last longer. Lifejackets, king starboard, ropes water toys, and other equipment that is prone to moisture or water retention should be removed from the boat, dried off, and placed in dry storage containers after use.
Check Metal Parts for Corrosion
Any metal component that is exposed to your boat may corrode and rust. Examine the metal components regularly to look for signs of rust and dry them when you can. Your boat’s engine must be inspected for signs of corrosion. To prevent corrosion and other engine problems, you should regularly clean your engine.
Regular Oil Changes
Find the manual to determine how often you have to check your oil. It is generally recommended that you replace the oil approximately every 100 running hours. Quickly-lube stores for boats and watercraft don’t really exist, so you should visit an approved specialist or dealer with a service center.
Check Your Propeller
Do not neglect to thoroughly inspect your propeller. There are a lot of issues that can come up with your propeller. Therefore, you should take it off regularly during the boating season and inspect it. It’s fine to have scratches or missing paint, but any large dents or indications of impact should be addressed by an expert. Otherwise, it could cause a loss of performance as well as increased fuel consumption. This is also a great opportunity to verify that the water you drink is clear of any debris.
A common issue is fishing line may end up wrapped around your propeller. If this occurs, you should ask your dealer to examine the gearcase of your vehicle and make sure there aren’t any leaks. Service to your gearcase must be done by a knowledgeable professional. After examining your propeller you should add waterproof grease and reinstall the propeller in the exact order you removed it.
Remove Your Battery in the Off-Season
Batteries won’t last forever, but you can extend the lifespan of your battery by getting rid of it during the off-season while your boat is being stored away. It is cleaned, charged, and store it in an area that isn’t easily altered by temperature changes or the elements.
Taking A Boat in for Maintenance
The boat should be brought to the service center prior to the opening of the boating season and also for repairs when certain situations occur, like damage to the prop or engine that is corroding or even an oil exchange. If you take your boat in for maintenance, winterization, spring maintenance, or spring cleaning it is recommended to call beforehand and plan to arrive before the scheduled time.