Time To Put The Toys Away

By Pat Piper
Published: Summer 2013

Maintaining your trailer in the off-season is as important as doing so
when it's in use

Photo of a boat and trailer stored on grassy area

Outdoor Warrior

Park the trailer on concrete if possible. Parking on grass will result in moisture that can harm the trailer frame. If grass is your only option, park the trailer rig over plywood.

Pull The Plug

Place a block of wood under the trailer jack to raise the bow. This will help rainwater and melting snow drain out.

Spare The Tires

Removing the tires deters theft, but it also helps avoid flat spots on tires caused by sitting in one position for a long period of time while holding the weight of the boat.

If tires are removed, place jackstand(s) under the axle(s) as close to the wheels as possible. Do not place stands in the center of the axle because this could bend it.

If you can't remove the tires, cover them (there are trailer tire covers available at most marine centers). The sun's UV rays can harm tires over a long period of time.

Theft Protection:
Keep Your Boat Safe In Storage

  • Face the trailer tongue away from the street.
  • Remove all electronic gear and, if possible, the outboard from the boat.
  • Remove one or more of the tires and store them inside with the lug nuts. Support the trailer with jackstands.
  • Remove the license plate from the trailer. A trailer without plates should attract the attention of police if your boat is stolen.
  • Have photos of the trailer and etch your initials or address into the trailer frame for identification when police recover it.
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