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As the sun begins to peak out of the clouds, you may be itching to get your boat out onto the water again. But after a winter in storage, it’s going to needs some work before you can start speeding through the open waters. Here are some steps to take to summerize your boat.
Start with the engine oil. If you took the time to winterize your boat at the end of the boating season, you may have already changed the oil. If not, now is the time to do it. At the same time, install a new oil filter and change the gear lube. Does your boat have a power steering reservoir? Make sure it’s full and ready to go.
You should have unhooked the battery at the end of last season, so it’ll be ready to test. Make sure there’s enough water, and then use a battery tester. If it responds well, clean off any grime and corrosion that may have accumulated in storage. If not, go ahead and replace the battery.
During the winterization process, you should have drained all the lines to prevent freezing and breakage. If you didn’t, inspect all the lines and connections for damage. If you see anything wrong, replace them before use. Providing you kept the gas tank full over the winter, it should be free of any problematic moisture. If not, check the fuel filter.
If everything looks good to go with the fuel system, refill the cooling system and fill up the rest of the tank with fresh fuel.
Spark plugs should all be in place and tightly fastened – give them a quick jiggle. Then give the distributor a once-over to make sure there is no corrosion around the cap. Next, if you placed plastic around the carburetor during the winterization process, remove it. Finally, give the belt a quick push to see if it’s loose or has soot around the pully. If so, replace it right away.
If you’re testing the engine out of water, you need to do so in a way that won’t ruin the motor. Follow these steps for testing a boat engine on dry land. While it’s running, take another pass around the boat. Check for any possible leaks, and make sure all the gauges read properly. The bilge pump and blower should be running as well.
Of all the maintenance steps you need to take before your boat is on the water, this is the most important. Count all the floatation devices and confirm that there are enough for everyone who will be on the boat. Make sure fire extinguishers have not expired. Then test any lights, flares, horns, and other signaling equipment.
It may seem far away, but the summer will be over before you know it. When it’s time to store your boat away again for the winter, choose Storage World. Our storage facilities near Atlanta offer boat parking, ideal for storing your boat between trips or seasons.
Reserve a storage space for your boat with Storage World today.