You might be wondering, is there anything you can do to care for your boat in the middle of the summer season that would reduce the amount of end-of-year work that needs to be done? Well, depending on where you are located and the amount of boating you actually do, you could reduce end-of-year work, while also providing extra care in the middle of the season. Cleaning should be done regularly after every excursion, but yes, there are some above and beyond things that you can do to provide even better maintenance and care for your boat. Make sure before you try these or any other cleaning tips for mid-season or post-season maintenance that you check with the manufacturer’s recommendations and warranty information to ensure that you don’t use any products or techniques that you shouldn’t.
Step One: Lubricate
Begin your mid-season maintenance by changing out the lower unit lubricants. It’s a good idea to do this in the middle of your boating season because it also gives you the opportunity to check for any seaweed, fishing line or debris that could have gotten stuck around the shaft. If you don’t remove it and it is there for any length of time, it could ultimately destroy the seals. This is a good time to grease up all of the linkages and fittings. Get a corrosion block product to spray onto the fuse blocks, ground buses, and engine.
Step Two: Tighten
Take some time to check all of the nuts and bolts on your motor mounts, transom, and jack plate. Due to the vibration of the engine and normal wear and tear, they can work loose, resulting in severe damage. If you are operating at full power and they come apart, the accident that would occur could be very extreme, possibly fatal.
Step Three: Corrosion
Corrosion can happen at any time. Sometimes you won’t see any corrosion developing and then, all of a sudden, it appears. Corrosion on your anodes can result in a lot of damage. Check this as part of your regular pre-trip routine, but do an even more thorough check during your mid-season maintenance program.
Step Four: Inspection
If you are taking your boat out of the water, placing it on stackable boat stands or galvanized boat stands, you can inspect the bottom to see if it needs cleaning or repair. A safety chain for boat stands can be used to provide even more protection, especially if you are going to be cleaning and working underneath the vessel. Scrub away any scum carefully, making sure that you don’t damage the paint.
Some boat owners will do this while anchored out on the water by diving underneath, but if you are doing a complete mid-season clean and maintenance, you can definitely do it on dry land. If you are moving your vessel, you may also be able to inspect it on the trailer. Make sure also to inspect and replace trailer wedge stands and pads as needed to provide your boat with proper protection.
Step Five: Fuel Filter
It is recommended that you change out the fuel filter during your mid-season maintenance. You can inspect the filter to see if it needs changing by draining out the contents into a clear vessel so you can see how it looks. If there is any water in the fuel tank, it will separate from the gas, so you will be able to identify it clearly. Make sure to replace the fuel filter with the same type of filter as recommended by the manufacturer. Never try to “make it fit” if it is a different size.
Step Six: Safety
Check the lights on your boat to make sure that they are all working as they should. In some cases, just a simple cleaning of the contacts and socket will get everything working again. However, if you do need to buy a new fixture, find out if you can save some money by just buying replacement sockets. Check all other wiring, electrical systems, radios, and safety gear on board at this time to ensure that everything is still good and in working order. Check your fire extinguisher, first aid kit, and flares for expiration dates.
Brownell Boat Stands Make It Easy
If you take your boat out of the water for cleaning and maintenance, or if you take it out regularly throughout the season for trailering, you can trust the equipment, parts, accessories, and components available from Brownell. Whether you need stackable boat stands to use at the storage site, galvanized boat stands for at-home storage, and maintenance, a safety chain for boat stands to improve stability, or trailer wedge stands and pads for extra protection, you can count on Brownell Boat Stands for high quality American made products. Give us a call at 508-758-3671 to find an authorized dealer near you.