Just like the car you drive, your boat is also your investment. You’ve made financial and personal adjustments in your life so you can enjoy traveling in the open seas with your own boat. And now that you finally have one, you want to maximize this investment for the longest time possible—and properly storing your boat is one way of achieving this goal.
You can only sail your boat during specific times of the year. To ensure your safety and that of your passengers at sea, you should pay attention to the waves, wind, and weather before sailing. If none of these are appropriate, you should properly store your boat by following the tips below:
1. Take it for the last ride.
Before working on the storage of your boat, you should take it for the last ride. If you’re fond of riding your boat, this task won’t become a chore for you—in fact, you might even enjoy accomplishing it. However, this task isn’t just about having fun—it’s your last chance to take note of any cosmetic or mechanical issues your boat might have. Once you’ve noticed any, have them repaired before storing it. Minor boat problems can become worse if not treated as soon as possible.
2. Select a storage location for your boat.
Deciding on the location of your boat storage should be on top of your to-do list. The location you’ll end up choosing can dramatically impact the condition of your boat. If you choose a location that isn’t suitable for the size or material of your boat, you might be surprised by how damaged your boat is when you finally use it again. Steer away from this direction by deciding whether you’re going to store it in your own property or at a storage facility. Any of these options have their own pros and cons so make sure that you weigh your options carefully. Although it can be tempting, price shouldn’t be your sole deciding factor in coming up with a decision.
3. Always clean your boat before storing.
Once you’ve decided how you’re going to store your boat, you now have to work on cleaning it. This is an essential step because its cleanliness can drastically affect the boat’s overall performance and lifespan. If you want your boat to run smoothly even after storing it, clean it by using non-abrasive fabric cleaners. You should use this to clean all of the furniture in your boat and make sure that all of these are free from any dirt or debris. You should also take time to drain your boat from any excess water and take out the bilge drain plug before storing.
The interior of your boat should be thoroughly cleaned as well. Depending on how long you’re planning to store your boat, consider using odor control bags in lockers and other enclosed spaces. You should also clean all the closets, drawers, and refrigerators. Clothes, life vests, and other supplies should be taken out from the boat before storage.
4. Take care of the fuel system.
Your boat will never run without its fuel system, but since you’re going to store it, you don’t have to keep its fuel system full. As a safety precaution, you should actually drain the fuel system before storing your boat. Doing this can reduce the moisture that can possibly seep in your boat, making it hard for you to run your engine once you use the boat again.
5. Cover your boat.
If you don’t have any experience in storing a boat, you might think that simply getting a cloth to cover your boat is enough. This is a misconception. If you want to properly cover your boat, especially if you’re going to store it for several months, be prepared to do your research. The cover you’ll choose will play an important role in the condition of your boat as this will protect it from the elements, mildew, and mold. Here are some factors to consider when choosing a cover:
- Dimensions of your boat
- UV ray resistance
- Water resistance
- Straps for tying down
Practice Makes Perfect
Contrary to popular belief, storing your boat is actually an easy task. Sure, it might seem challenging at first, but once you’ve weighed in what’s at stake and the benefits you can experience, you can assure that all of the efforts you put into storing your boat will be worth it in the end. To make this task easier for you, don’t forget to use this article as your guide. Once you know the basic tips and have actually mastered all of these, storing your boat in the future will become a piece of cake!