How to Prepare Your Boat for Storage

Unlike other modes of transport, most boats have many vital parts exposed to the elements as they don't have full roofs. For this reason, it's even more critical that they are stored correctly in the offseason. A boat is a significant investment, and repairs are costly. Preventing damages can save you tons of money, plus ensure your boat is ready to get straight out into the water next year.
With these tips, you can adequately prepare your boat for storage.

Where will you store it?

Before preparing your boat for storage, you first need to decide where it will be stored. This may be challenging, especially if you lack adequate space. But all hope is not lost yet! One great idea is to book an external space. Investing in secure self storage units will help safeguard your boat against harsh elements, such as snow, dust, rain, theft, and damage. As a tip, consider choosing a reliable facility near you. That way, you will enjoy your peace of mind knowing your watercraft is safely tucked away until you require it. Though some people keep their boat in the water, inside a boathouse, this is not recommended. Your boat will face exposure to dropping temperatures and ice within the water, which can damage it or even cause it to sink. Therefore, the best way to store a boat in on land under a large canopy. Car canopies work great for this purpose as they prevent any damage from the weather or debris from falling into your boat. Ideally, you should have a tight cover for around the top of your boat and then park it under the canopy.

Steps to prep your boat for storage

1. Let your boat run

Turn your boat on and let it run while you listen to the sounds it makes. Notice if anything sounds off or if you hear any rattling that could indict a crack or that something is loose.

2. Drain out any water

You'll want to ensure all water is drained from the boat before you store it. Any water left in the tanks, pipes, or bilge will freeze and likely cause damage. Put anti-freeze into the water tank and the bilge just to ensure if there is any moisture that it won't turn into ice.

3. Clean everything

Your boat likely hasn't had a good cleaning since last year, so give it a good scrub. The exterior should be clear of any plant matter that might be stuck to it. Clean the interior as well, making sure to thoroughly check all the nooks, crannies, and drawers to get anything out. You don't want to end up finding a half-eaten sandwich in the drawer months later. Give the boat a nice coat of wax once it's clean.

4. Prep your engine

There are a few things to consider when prepping your engine. First, flush it out with clean water to get rid of any dirt or saltwater that may have built up. Top up the anti-freeze and change the oil. Take out the drive belts, so they don't break from the tension when they freeze up. You'll also want to fill your gas tank up with gasoline and stabilizer. Then make sure to run the engine so that the infused fuel gets into the lines.

5. Take out the battery

Remove the battery from your boat and store it somewhere dry. Apply grease to both the terminals and the cable ends.

6. Cover up the exhaust

Make sure your seal up any exhaust ports. Furry critters love to make nests inside the pipes, which can clog them up. Sealing them off will prevent any uninvited guests.
By following these steps, your boat will be all set for storage.