How To Prepare Your Boat for Both Summer and Winter Self Storage
Boating is the ultimate recreation for people who love the water and water sports. It’s fun, relaxing and an enjoyable family activity. However, boat maintenance and self storage takes time and energy. One of the biggest problems for boat owners, is properly storing their boat. Winter storage is critical for those living in a climate where temperatures fall below freezing.
On the other hand, storing a boat during the summer months can be important even if you’re using it only on weekends and holidays. Your boat can be permanently ruined if it’s stored improperly. Storing a boat correctly is not only necessary in the winter, but also during the summer.
Boat Storage Prep
Here are some tips to help you get your boat prepared for storage. Some extra work now will have your boat in pristine condition and waiting for you when your ready to enjoy the water.
Get Your Boat Ready for Summer Self Storage
If you use your boat only sporadically during the summer, it should be stored properly when not in use. To keep your boat in the best condition and prevent mold and mildew, consider climate-controlled storage. You don’t want to incur damage or deterioration due to high temperatures or humidity.
Here are some steps to consider for summer storage:
Keep the Trailer in Good Shape
The tires should be properly inflated, and check that the safety lights and wires are in good working condition.
Clean the Hull and Deck
Even though you’re not storing your boat for an entire season, you want it clean and free of trash and debris when you’re ready to use it again. Wash off the outside of the boat with a garden hose or sprayer.
Do a Quick Check for Damage
Check for any damage on the hull and motor. A small problem now that may lead to a large repair bill later can be corrected.
Be Sure Your Gear is Properly Stowed
All of your gear should be in good condition and correctly stored. Life jackets, fire extinguishers, first aid kits and flares should be checked for expiration dates and, if necessary, replaced.
Cover Your Boat
High temperatures and humidity are hard on a boat. When storing your boat during the summer, use a tough, plastic woven shade cover that will inhibit mold, rust, and fading.
Get Your Boat Ready for Winter Storage
It can be very costly to store your boat at the marina for the winter months or when you’re unable to use it for an extended period of time. Trying to store it at home is inconvenient and can be a security risk. It takes up space in your driveway or elsewhere on your property and is exposed to theft and vandalism.
A better solution would be to store your boat in a conventional storage unit that has sufficient space for your boat and trailer, or a secure outdoor parking area. Your jet skis, kayaks, and canoes can be stored right along with your boat. Storing with us is far less hassle for you and a safe, secure option for all your watercraft.
Follow these tips for safe winter storage:
Clean the Hull and Deck
You’ll be storing your boat for an entire season. You want it clean and free of last
summer’s trash when you’re ready to put it in the water next summer.
Add a Fuel Stabilizer and Fill the Tank
Condensation can form in an empty gas tank, causing corrosion or worse if the moisture
freezes. Fuel stabilizer will prevent this from happening and your fuel will be ready to go
when you are.
Change the Oil
Water or acids that have gotten into your oil can corrode the engine. Change the filter
and flush it out so that no water remains. Then, add new oil.
Refresh the Coolant System
Drain the current coolant, flush with water, and fill with fresh antifreeze. Make sure
you’ve diluted the antifreeze to specification. This will protect your engine from freezing
Disconnect the Battery
Don’t allow your battery to drain over the winter. Disconnect it and top it off with
distilled water. Charge it periodically to make sure it’s ready to go when you hook it
back up to your boat.
Grease the Steering Mechanism
Grease the steering and control mechanisms so that they will be moving smoothly when
it’s time to take the boat out again.
Remove the Drive Belts
Before storing your boat, loosen or remove the drive belts. They may crack under the
stress of being kept under tension for long periods of time.
Maintain the Interior of Your Boat
If you have electronics in your boat, they are vulnerable to extreme cold and moisture.
Remove them prior to storage. Leather, canvas, and any other organic fabrics should be
removed to prevent mold and mildew. Empty the water tanks and run antifreeze through
Wash and Wax the Exterior
Cover the body of your boat with wax. This will prevent rust from corroding your boat’s
exterior and is particularly important if you are storing your boat outside.
Use A Cover
A cover is not merely an accessory, it is a necessity. A cover can be a significant investment, but it will protect your
boat from moisture, mold, fading, cracking and animals as well as being a theft deterrent.
Here at Trusted Self Storage we can offer you a convenient, affordable, and secure facility to not only store, but protect your watercraft. Any one of our friendly, knowledgeable staff will be happy to discuss your boat storage options.