Spring is finally here and you’re likely starting to think about getting back out on the water.
Before you do it’s important to run through your spring checklist to make sure everything is in working order. This is especially true if your boat has been sitting in storage all winter.
So, what do you need to do before you start enjoying boating season? Here’s our guide to spring boat maintenance.
One of the first things you should do is check your hulk for scratches, abrasions, and cracks. This is a great time to do it since they’re easier to spot with your boat out of the water. It also gives you a chance to resolve any issues before the start of the season.
Small cracks might not seem important now, but over time they’ll grow and become a much bigger issue. Eventually, they might even compromise the integrity of your hull. This is why it’s best to take care of any issues sooner rather than later.
Check your boat to ensure you have all the necessary safety equipment. This includes:
You’ll also want to make sure everything is in working properly. For example, many fire extinguishers have a short lifespan and need to be replaced after a while. The same goes for certain types of PFDs.
It’s always a good idea to start the season by performing an oil change, especially if you didn’t change the oil at the end of last year. You’ll also need to flush the cooling system and replace the antifreeze with water and coolant. Check all your other fuel levels, as well as your spark plugs and fuel filter.
Once that’s all done start the engine up and let it idle for a while to see if it’s running properly. If you hear any strange noises shut it down immediately and take it to a mechanic.
Turn on all your electronics, including your fish finder, GPS, and radio to ensure everything is still functioning. If something’s not working there’s a good chance you have a dead battery. Inspect all your batteries, clean off any corrosion, and refill them with distilled water as needed. You’ll also want to have a look at your wiring to see if there’s any fraying or loose connections.
If you have electronic components that aren’t working and you don’t know why, contact a marine electrician.
Before you take your boat to the boat launch give your trailer an inspection as well. Check the rollers, turn signals, brake lights, straps, chains, and winch so you know everything is still working properly.
Performing proper spring maintenance is critical to the longevity of your boat. Give us a call or stop by one of our locations to book an appointment with one of our technicians.