It’s Boat Season: A Checklist to Make Sure Yours is Ready

Spring has officially sprung, which means summer is right around the corner, so it’s time to think about getting your boat ready for the season. You don’t want to risk taking the boat out on the water and risk something happening you, your passengers or the boat, so the following checklist will help you ensure it is in tip-top condition before you head out to the water.

Electrical Connections
Carefully check all of the electrical connections to make sure they are clean and tight. Check for corrosion, which may be sign of an unsafe connection. Remove the terminals and clean the cable ends and connections with a wire brush. Charge the battery and make sure to test it to ensure it is holding a charge. It is highly recommended that you have the electrical systems inspected by a qualified technician.

Cables, Hoses & Belts
Check control cables for swelling or cracks on the outer layer and replace them if needed. Cables can be easily replaced by a boat repair center or you can order the cables to replace them yourself. Always check the hoses for any cracking that may have occurred during winter storage. The belts should fit tightly around the pulleys to prevent the risk of slipping. Belts that are worn typically have a black substance near the pulley and/or they may have a lose fit.

Fluid Levels
Check all of the fluid levels, including:

  • Coolant
  • Power steering fluid
  • Power trim reservoir
  • Engine oil-if the oil was not changed during winterizing, make sure to change the oil, replace the filter and change the drive lubricants.

Inspect the fuel lines for damage. Typical signs of damaged hoses include cracking, or hoses that are hard or extra soft. Remember to check the connections and the tank surfaces. Make sure the clamps and fittings are secure.

Along with the above checklist, it is also important to make sure you check the safety gear to ensure all life jackets are in good condition and that you have various sizes to accommodate all passengers. The onboard fire extinguisher must be the correct class for your boat and fully charged. It is also important to ensure your trailer is in good condition, so inspect the wheels and check the trailer straps to make sure they are not worn.

One of the most important things for Wayzata, MN residents should have on their boat checklist is insurance. Make sure to contact Pizano Insurance to check on your current boat policy or to start a new boat policy.