Unless you’re the captain of the Flying Dutchman, the legendary ghost ship doomed to forever sail the oceans, it’s that time of year to think about storing your watercraft for the colder months.
It can be very costly to store your boat at the marina for the winter months or when you’re unable to use it for an extended period of time. Trying to store it at home is inconvenient and can be a security risk. It takes up space in your driveway or elsewhere on your property and is exposed to theft and vandalism. A better solution would be to store your boat in a conventional storage unit that has sufficient space for your boat and trailer, or a secure outdoor parking area. Your jet skis, kayaks, and canoes can be stored right along with your boat. Storing with us is far less hassle for you and a safe, secure option for all your watercraft.
Here are some tips to help you get your boat prepared for storage. Some extra work now will have your boat in pristine condition and waiting for you when the warmer weather arrives.
Get Your Boat Ready for Storage
Clean the Hull and Deck
You’ll be storing your boat for an entire season. You want it clean and free of last summer’s trash when you’re ready to put it in the water next summer.
Add a Fuel Stabilizer and Fill the Tank
Condensation can form in an empty gas tank, causing corrosion or worse if the moisture freezes. Fuel stabilizer will prevent this from happening and your fuel will be ready to go when you are.
Change the Oil
Water or acids that have gotten into your oil can corrode the engine. Change the filter and flush it out so that no water remains. Then, add new oil.
Refresh the Coolant System
Drain the current coolant, flush with water, and fill with fresh antifreeze. Make sure you’ve diluted the antifreeze to specification. This will protect your engine from freezing and corrosion.
Disconnect the Battery
Don’t allow your battery to drain over the winter. Disconnect it and top it off with distilled water. Charge it periodically to make sure it’s ready to go when you hook it back up to your boat.
Grease the Steering Mechanism
Grease the steering and control mechanisms so that they will be moving smoothly when it’s time to take the boat out again.
Remove the Drive Belts
Before storing your boat, loosen or remove the drive belts. They may crack under the stress of being kept under tension for long periods of time.
Maintain the Interior of Your Boat
If you have electronics in your boat, they are vulnerable to extreme cold and moisture. Remove them prior to storage. Leather, canvas, and any other organic fabrics should be removed to prevent mold and mildew. Empty the water tanks and run antifreeze through the pipes.
Wash and Wax the Exterior
Cover the body of your boat with wax. This will prevent rust from corroding your boat’s exterior and is particularly important if you are storing your boat outside.
Use A Cover
A cover is not merely an accessory, it is a necessity. A cover can be a significant investment, but it will protect your boat from moisture, mold, fading, cracking and animals as well as being a theft deterrent.
Here at Universal Storage we can offer you a convenient, affordable, and secure facility to not only store, but protect your watercraft. Any one of our friendly, knowledgeable staff will be happy to discuss your boat storage options.