Should I Winterize My New Boat? Yes, and This is Why

Well, it’s that time of year again in most parts of the country. Time to winterize your boats, so they are ready to go next spring when you go to fire her up. Today, we are going to cover some of the important reasons why you should not let your baby sit through the winter the way you last parked it, and why you should winterize your boat.

Photo Credit: boatus.com

Reasons to Winterize Your Boat

There are many reasons you should winterize your boat, below you will find what we think are the most important reasons.

Keeping it running well

I’m sure you know what happens when you let gas sit in anything with a motor for a long period of time. You think your weed-eater is hard to start? You don’t want the investment you put into your boat to be just as hard to start.

  1. Gas will turn sour and lose it’s “punch”. Old gas does not burn as good as fresh gas. In fact, the longer gas sits, the worse it is for your vehicle. You want to get your gas tank emptied and all your hoses drained. Not doing so, can lead to many issues including lowering the life of your motor. On top of that, gas can freeze which can expand and crack your hoses.
  2. Your carb! Gas sitting in your carburetor can run havoc on how your boat runs. Making sure it is clean when you put her down for the year will insure a quick start in the spring.
  3. There is no better time to replace old oil with new. It is important to drain your lower unit oil in the winter and replace with fresh in the spring. Didn’t use your boat much this year? It doesn’t matter, it is worth the small investment to just do it.
  4. By greasing all your electric connections and movable parts, it will protect them from the harshness of winter. You can find this grease at any Marine Supplies Store. You don’t want flaky connections while out on the water!

Keeping it looking good

It would be nice to have indoor winter storage for your boat, but most people do not have the space for this. This means that most boats are kept outdoors. And just like the summer sun, winter can prematurely age your boat in many ways.

  1. Between the sun, snow, rain and cold, your seats and carpet will pay a heavy price if not covered correctly. Keep your boat looking good and invest in a boat cover. Do not use a tarp, they are not made to breathe and will hold in wetness. Boat covers are made to let moisture out and allow everything to breathe. This will protect you against mold and sitting water.
  2. Besides covering your boat, using tire covers will allow you to get many more years out of your tires. You will notice many trailers have dry-rotted tires (cracks in them). This is caused from sitting more then being drove, by the sun and water. Making sure to use some tire shine, then covering them will make them last much longer.
  3. While speaking about your tires, another thing you may want to do is to have them either parked on a hard surface that drains, or jack them up off the ground.  Parking in grass or soft gravel will degrade your tires way faster than if you have them parked in a way that doesn’t allow standing water.
  4. Cleaning your boat now while winterizing will make sure everything looks good come spring.

The best time to fix and replace parts

Depending on how your store your boat, depends on how much you can do while it is down for the winter. If parked inside, you have all winter to tinker with it. But if you have it outside and covered, this would be a good time to do any maintenance that you have been putting off. Want to add some pole holders? This is the perfect time!

My go-to place is Marinewaze. Much cheaper than local and I save on taxes. You can check them out or give them a call at 1-800-201-1221 if you like.

The Bottom Line

No matter what your telling yourself, know that it is important to winterize your boat. Don’t be lazy and let it pass by, you will be kicking yourself in the butt next year when you’re broke down in the middle of the lake. If you have never had to ask another boater for a tow back to dock, consider yourself lucky. It is not only a buzz kill, but embarrassing!

Take care of your equipment now so you are the one being asked for help later.

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