Prep for Fall: A Guide for Boat Owners
With the past two winters we have had in Texas, boat owners shouldn’t leave anything to chance when it comes to preparing for cold, inclimate weather. From seasonal maintenance for use during the cold months to prepping for off-season storage, there is plenty to be done during the fall season to ensure the longevity and security of your boat. So, with September being National Preparation Month, our insurance experts have put together a comprehensive guide to help boat owners like you prepare for fall and winter!
Prep Tips for Boat Owners
While all boat owners know how important regular maintenance is, regardless of seasonal use, it will be a recurring part of your fall prep guide. Not only is maintenance necessary to keep your boat running smoothly for use during fall and winter, but there are even some crucual maintenance steps all boat owners should take before off-season storage. We will walk you through how to prep for both!
♦ Fall Prep for Boat Owners Starts Here ♦
1. Start with a Deep Clean
Whether you store your boat for the season or take her out year-round, a deep cleaning is likely in order. To start, clean and varnish metal and wood surfaces that are prone to rusting or drying out. This is especially important if you plan to store your boat all winter. It’s also important to open up and drain any seacocks. While your boat is out of the water, remove any plant life or barnacles that have hitched a ride to dry land. If you do plan to store your boat indoors this winter, you should give the hull a wax job.
2. Take it for a Professional Tune-Up
Once you’ve scoured your skiff, it’s time to make sure that all electrical and plumbing systems are functioning properly. Even if your boat will not alight the water for the next few months, you should tackle any electrical, plumbing, or engine repairs now, rather than leaving these issues for the start of next spring. Before you store your boat for the next few months with a tank full of gas, be sure to add fuel stabilizer. This will keep the ethanol in the gas from damaging your tank!
Prep for Fall & Save
As the season changes, it may be a great time to shop your current boat insurance policy for deeper discounts. Give us a call or click below for a quote!
Now that we’ve covered some proactive steps you can take to prep for fall around your home, let’s dive into some things you can do to prep your car, boat, motorcycle, and RV for this season!
3. Cover & Pest-Proof It
Whether you plan to either store your boat on the water or continue to use it during the winter months, a strong tarp is your best friend. Just be sure to use a polyvinyl tarp that is made to fit the size of your boat. A loosely fitting cover can allow moisture to invade, leading to the build-up of rust and mold. You’ll also want to make sure that your boat doesn’t become a popular pest party spot. With that goal in mind, make sure all points of entry are sealed and blocked, and store your boat far away enough from the ground so vermin cannot reach it.
4. Winterize Your Boat
For the most comprehensive fall prep, you should leave your boat winterization to your mechanic. This typically includes a fuel filter and water separator change, a bulb and fuel line checkup, an oil change and filter replacement, water impeller replacement, changing of all fluids, and an engine and battery tuneup. Before handing it off to your mechanic, top off the tank and add a multifunction fuel stabilizer. For more tips about ways you can winterize your boat like a pro, you can visit the National Boat Owners Association.
♦ Prep for Fall and Beyond ♦
Now that you have a solid checklist to get started, you can rest assured that you’ll stay ahead of whatever surprises Mother Nature throws your way this season. However, if you’re looking for year-round coverage with an insurance team who lives in Texas and understands our unpredictable weather, it’s time to talk to our pros. Give us a call today at (972) 771-2622 or visit our website for a quote from one of our agents.