How to Winterize a Boat

Have you been thinking about winterizing a boat?

The winter months can be a rough time for any boat that’s not in a slip. Winter storms, ice, and freezing temperatures put a lot of strain on any boat as it sits out in the open. Hurricanes and other extreme weather events also wreak havoc on unwatched boats.

It’s important to get your boat fortified before the winter months roll around. Follow these quick tips to learn how to winterize boat properly so that when the weather gets cold you’re prepared to handle it all. Read on!

How to Winterize Boat?

Winterizing a boat is an important part of ownership. To winterize a boat, one must do the following:

Prep Your Boat’s Engine

First and foremost, change the oil and filter according to the manufacturer’s manual. Add fuel and fogging oil to the engine, following the manufacturer’s instructions. Additionally, attach weights to the bottom of the boat if necessary and inspect the propeller for damage or wear and tear.

Use Corrosion Protection

Make sure components exposed to water and air like fittings, rudders, rod holders, and cleats are treated with corrosion protection. This will help prevent damage from salty water, wind, and sun. Don’t forget to lubricate all of the moving parts, including cables, hinging points, and valves.

Add Fuel Stabilizer

Start by pouring a fuel stabilizer into an empty fuel tank and filling it with fresh unleaded gasoline. Once fuel stabilizers are added, run the boat for up to 10 minutes to allow the mixture to circulate throughout the fuel lines, fuel injectors, and engine components. Once the boat is shut off, it’s important to top off the fuel tank to prevent condensation and contamination.

Drain Your Boat’s Freshwater System

Make sure to empty any freshwater tanks and disconnect shore power. Then disconnect and open the seacocks for all inlets, valves, heads, and holding tanks until the water is completely out. To ensure no water remains, it may be a good idea to run a hose from the drain port of each component down through the bilge.

Remove the Battery

Carefully remove the battery from the boat in an upright stance, making sure to confirm all terminals are uncoupled, and that it does not drop or come in contact with any metal within the boat. Cover the exposed terminals with petroleum jelly and store the battery in a safe, dry space that is away from flammable materials. Check the battery’s electrolyte levels and, if needed, add water.

Store Your Boat Properly

Store all items that can freeze such as life jackets, wet suits, and spare fuel tanks safely and indoors. Treat all metals with lubricants and apply a coat of wax to the hull to keep the boat looking good during its winter rest. Finally, attach a tarp to protect it from inclement weather and secure it to a boat storage, dock, or trailer.

Once the winter is over, you’ll need to get your boat out of storage. Learn more info on how to get your boat out of storage in this article.

The Importance of Winterizing a Boat

Winterizing your boat correctly is a simple yet important process. This will ensure your boat is ready to be used during the coming spring and summer months. Use this guide to help you winterize boat easily, safely, and effectively.

Winterize your boat now and ensure a stress-free start to the boating season.

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