The best thing to do to make sure that your boat is summer
ready, is test it out before you plan to use it. You are so excited to get out on the water for the first day of the boating
season, that you figure, "Hey, it was running fine at the end of last year. It should be fine now."
Make sure that your safety
equipment is in good condition.
Lifejackets are an essential part of boating, and should not have any tears. Also make
sure that there are enough for everyone on board, and that children's fit properly.
Fire extinguishers are necessary to
have readily available. Make sure that they are in working order and charged, because discharge usually happens in months
of storage. Check the expiration date.
One thing that may be overlooked when getting your boat summer-ready
is your registration. Check to make sure it is current, and that you have the sticker on your boat.
Topside, and Deck:
Give your boat a good spring cleaning.
The topsides, hull, and deck need to
be cleaned with a mild detergent, polished, and waxed
Check the hull for any cracks, abrasions, or other damages, and
repair if necessary. Also make sure the plug is intact and in good condition.
Also check to make sure you have all of
the necessary supplies for a boating trip.
Electronics, Lights and Batteries:
sure that you have a working battery; if you don't have power, you won't get very far.
Reattach the cables, and check to
make sure the battery is charged and will remain charged. If it seems to be weak, or not charged; replace it. It is better
to be safe than sorry when dealing with a battery that can die out and leave you stranded.
Check cabin and navigation
lights to make sure that they are working properly. It is a good idea to have spare lights on board just in case.
exposed wires for cracks or wear, and make sure they are attached properly
Make sure all electrical components are in
working order such as; radio, bilge pump, horn, etc.
Engine and Fuel:
gas from last year and top it off to avoid condensation build up
replace the fuel filter, and make sure that the lines
are attached and not cracked
Change the oil and oil filters
Check coolant and transmission fluid and change if necessary
Check the tension of the belts, and tighten if needed to prevent wearing and slipping.
It is a good idea to start
your engine out of the water ahead of time to make sure it is good condition.
By going through this checklist, you can avoid a lot of trouble
out on the water. If you come across a problem, it is much easier to fix before it is too late, and possible does more damage.
Your boat is now ready to hit the water, go ahead and enjoy the summer!