Spring is in the air. Is your boat ready to hit the water?
When De-winterizing your boat, make sure you do an inspection before you try and take it out. You want to be sure that all of the parts will be in working order.
First, start with the engine. If it wasn’t changed before the winter, change the engine oil. Check the out-drive oil as well to make sure everything is good there. You’ll also want to replace your oil filter while you are at it.
Second, check the battery of your boat. If you have water in your battery, be sure it stays full of water. When it’s dry, it’s no longer good. Use a battery tester to check out the amps and volts. If nothing seems to work on it, then you may need a new battery.
Third, it’s time to fill up the cooling system. You should already know to have drained it before the winter struck to avoid freezing lines. Be sure you examine the hoses for any cracks and empty out the strainer.
Fourth, the boat’s gas tank should have been full so no moisture had a chance to form. Make sure that the fuel filter has been changed and its lines were not cracked. It’s not uncommon to find these lines cracked from the winter temperatures.
Fifth, be sure you clean out the distributor. To do this, you’ll need to take its cap off. Wintertime can corrode distributors. Once you check it out, be sure the connections are completely hooked back up.
Sixth, check all of the boat’s belts. Any belt that seems too loose should be changed as it is worn. To check if a belt is worn out try pushing it down. It should push down just slightly, not significantly. The alternator belt on your boat can wear out faster than any others. How else can you check if there is a worn belt on your boat? Look for some black soot near the pulley.
While these are not the only parts you should check on your boat, they are vital to dewinterization and ensuring safety and fun throughout the warm months of Spring and Summer.