How to Summerize Your Boat

Spring is right around the corner, which means it will soon be time to pull your boat out of storage and get it ready for the upcoming months of warm weather and sunshine! A well-maintained boat is a safer boat and will last you many more years than a boat that is poorly cared for. Follow Kent’s Boats’ tips for summerizing your boat to make sure you’re ready for the upcoming boating season.

Your Engine

Your boat’s engine is likely the place that will need the most love and attention. Even if you did your best to winterize your boat, cold weather and months of storage can leave your engine a little ragged.

Things to check:

  • Oil (now is the best time to replace your oil)
  • Oil filter
  • Battery (check for how well the battery holds a charge, and if your battery holds water, be sure it stays full, as a dry battery is no longer usable)
  • Cooling system (hopefully you drained it before storage; now is the time to refill)
  • Gas tank
  • Distributor (clean out all corrosion)
  • Lines, tubes and belts (look for cracks, holes, erosion, and loose worn belts)

The greatest killer of a good time out on the lake is an engine failure. Take your time summerizing your engine, and most problems will be easily avoided.

Your Hull

Damage to your hull can literally sink your boat. Don’t forget to conduct a thorough inspection of all areas of your boat’s hull, bow to stern.

What to look for:

  • Chips and cracks
  • Chalky residue (sign of possible oxidation)
  • Blisters
  • Holes and punctures

This is the time of year you’ll want to restore your hull’s gelcoat. A gelcoat is responsible not only for your boat’s reflective shimmer out on the water, it is also what repels water and thus protects your hull from oxidation. Low levels of oxidation can generally be repaired with fiberglass cleaner, but you may need to hire a professional to address serious oxidation.

Your Canvas and Vinyl

Canvas and vinyl is easier to fix than most other areas on your boat. Check for tears, mildew, dirt and anything else growing and gunking up your boat. Clean thoroughly with cleaners that are canvas and vinyl safe.

Your Electronics

It’s best to make sure all of your electronics are working properly before you take your boat out. Radio, GPS and compass, depth readers, etc. should all be checked to be sure that they are in fine and working order.

Your Safety Equipment

Now is the time to double-check your life-preserves and fire extinguisher. Make sure you the legally required number of life-jackets and that your extinguisher is current and stored properly.

Your Metal and Teak

As a boat owner, you should be proud of your watercraft. Nothing says pride quite like well-maintained metal and teak. Applying a simple stain and varnish or a metal polisher is enough to make your boat stand out on the water.

At Kent’s Boats, we are here to help you have the best time possible, whether it’s on your own boat or one of our Coeur d’Alene boat rentals. Check us out on Facebook, where we regularly post special pricing and summer deals: www.facebook.com/kentsboats.