The much anticipated boat season is right around the corner, and now is the time to get your boat ready to ride. There are a couple of key things that apply to most boats to get them in ship-shape:
- First, check to see if anything needs replacing. The sooner you find out what you need replaced, the quicker your boat will be ready for the season, especially if you have to order something and it takes several business days to get to you.
- Change your boat’s engine oil. Also replace the filter if necessary. One good rule of thumb to go by is to change both your engine oil and filter either every one hundred hours of motor/engine operation, or with each passing season.
- Next, do a general cleaning of your boat, both hull and topside. A mild detergent with water will do in most cases, unless you have any specialty material on your boat such as fabrics or teak; in those cases, I suggest you find out exactly what works best for those things.
- If you don’t already have one for your boat, get a tool bag. This bag should contain all of the tools you would need in order to replace something or conduct a simple repair while on board. Don’t forget to keep the bag on your boat, because you never know when you’re going to need the tools!
- Keep a first aid kit and life ring on your boat.
- Check your boats registration, and see if it is current.
- Check and possibly replace the zincs you have on the hull of your boat.
- Inspect the hull of your boat, and make sure there are no punctures or abrasions that might need repairing.
If you take care of your boat, it’ll take care of you. Taking the time to do these steps not only ensures a higher quality of enjoyment of your time on the water, but it also extends the life of your boat. Happy boating!