Know How: Ten Things To Do Over Winter
BoatUS Trailering Editors
Even if you're reading this with 10 feet of snow outside, there's always stuff to do. You could spend the day watching another episode of Law & Order or you could prepare for spring
Remove the battery from the boat. If it's sitting for long periods, charge it (a trickle charge works well) every month. Remember older batteries lose their charge faster than newer ones. The average life of a marine battery is three years. Find out more in our Battery Chargers article.
Inspect the bilge for water that may have gathered from melting snow or heavy rain. If you're in a cold climate and the drain got clogged, you may well be looking at ice in the bilge. Use rock salt and antifreeze to break it up, dry the bilge completely, and make sure the boat will drain going forward.
Boat Registration Updated?
Is yours current? In most states, it can be done online.
Check The Prop
Need a different prop for next season, or troubleshooting the one you have? Check out our article on propellers. If it needs some TLC, removing the prop is easy with our video: www.BoatUS.com/Videos/Prop
Look At The Anode
If it's 50 percent of what it once was, replace it. Find out more about Anodes.
Get To Grips With The Transducer
BoatUS expert Tom Neale says replacing it is no big deal (www.BoatUS.com/Transducer).
New Graphics For The Boat
It can all be ordered online: www.BoatUS.com/BoatGraphics
And here's a video about what to do next: www.BoatUS.com/Videos/Graphics
If you're thinking about a new layer for the hull's bottom, BoatUS Expert and Technical Editor Don Casey tells you what to expect (www.BoatUS.com/BoatTECH/BottomPaint).
That Big Trip You've Been Talking About
If your boat is wider than 8' 6" and you're planning an out-of state trek, start applying for the permits now. BoatUS members get a discount.
And Last, But Not Least ...
Take The BoatUS Foundation's Online Safety Course. It's recognized by the United States Coast Guard and 34 states. If your boat is insured by BoatUS Marine Insurance, you can get as much as a 10-percent discount on premiums.
BoatUS Experts are right here: www.BoatUS.com/BoatTECH
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It's that little box that keeps the whole show running. Show it the respect it deserves with these tips.
Why boats get damaged during the winter, and how to protect them.
Frequent oil changes ward off breakdowns and extend the life of your engine(s) by thousands of hours--simple as that.