Now that it’s warming up, boat owners everywhere are throwing off the canvas covering their vessels and looking to get their boats out on the water as soon as possible. Before you load your boat up on the trailer, though, you should take some time to wake her from her slumber. Since you winterized your boat before you stored her, you must now reverse that process and de-winterize her, readying her for all your summer maritime excursions. If you’re not sure where to start with this process, Tom-N-Jerry’s Boat Center has created this quick guide to get you going. Our dealership is in Mount Vernon, Washington, so if you have any questions or need to get some service on your boat, give us a call!
Once you’ve taken off the canvas of your boat, you’ll want to walk around her and give her a thorough inspection. You’re looking for any damage that you might have missed in the fall, plus any damage that might have accrued while she was stored. Unless you backed your truck into her, this will probably be minimal to nothing, but remember that animals may have climbed aboard to make her their winter respite, so check for signs of damage from them. The hull should be pristine and everything should be just as you left it, provided your boat wasn’t outside in harsh weather.
Your boat’s engine needs to be in good shape before you take her out on the water, so you’ll want to remove the covers and have a good look around inside. Look at the coolant and oil levels to see that they’re clean and filled and top them up or change them as necessary. Look for signs of leaks around the engine heads and gaskets. Pull out a spark plug or two to see that they aren’t corroded and that their ceramic housing is whole. You should perform any minor repairs within your capabilities now, and if there’s something you can’t fix, call our service department so we can have a look.
It’s likely that you carry several electronic devices on your boat and you want to make sure these are both present and functional. Check your fish finder and GPS to see that they’re working and get them charged up. Replace batteries as necessary so you’re not caught out on the water without a way to navigate.
Your boat’s canvas is what protects her when she’s not in use, and it can suffer damage from mold, mildew, UV rays and animal infestations. Look the whole cloth over and patch up any rips or tears you see before they become too big. Your boat’s seats are likely made of similar material so check them for the same kinds of damage.
You undoubtedly cleaned up your boat before you stored her for winter, but now that she’s sat in storage for months, she could probably use a little sprucing up. This will not only ensure she looks good, but your passengers will be more comfortable and happy on a clean-smelling boat free of mildew and dust. Polish up your boat’s chrome, wipe down all the seats and canvas, sweep the decks free of dead leaves and detritus and clean your glass and windshields thoroughly. Clean out any livewells and baitwells and coolers so they don’t smell.
Have some questions about boat maintenance? Looking to upgrade your current boat or purchase a new style? Visit our showroom to see the wide selection of new and used boats we have in stock. Tom-N-Jerry’s Boat Center is in Mount Vernon, serving the Washington cities of Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue and Shoreline. We’re also here for our customers coming down from Alaska!