WINTERISING YOUR BOAT
1. RAW WATER SYSTEM DRAIN. Ensure the raw water cooling system is drained down and the impellor is removed. This will reduce the risk of the cooling hoses splitting and will prolong the life of the impellor.
2. FILL UP FUEL TANKS. Try to ensure that the fuel tanks are filled especially diesels as this will reduce the risk of water contamination and fuelbugs.
3. FRESH WATER SYSTEM DRAIN. Tanks should be drained down to reduce the risk of freezing waters splitting the tanks and pipework.
4. BATTERY CHARGE MAINTAIN. If the batteries are being left on the boat and being trickle charged make sure the levels are topped up so that the batteries don’t dry out and buckle the plates. If possible take the batteries off the boat and keep them in the garage this Winter where they can be checked more easily.
5. INSULATE ENGINE. If possible fit an inexpensive tube heater in the engine bay and in the accommodation space which will help prevent freezing. If eletricity is not available an old blanket can be used to wrap around the engine to keep the temperature up.
6. OIL CHANGE. If possible change the oil before the vessel is laid up. This will prevent contaminates in the oil such as moisture being left on the internal engine parts thus reducing the risk of corrosion and wear.
7. UPHOLSTERY. Cushions should ideally be taken home but if this is not possible lift them enough to ensure that condensation cannot gather underneath and air can circulate more freely.
8. EMPTY CONDENSATION TRAPS. Condensation traps place them in areas where, if they overfill, they will not damage upholstery or internal linings.
9. CANOPY SUPPORT. Try to ensure that the canopy is well supported so water cannot gather and stretch or rip the materal. You can use Vaseline on canopy clips and lip balm on zips which will prevent the clips from corroding and reduce the risk of zips seizing.
10.KEEP BILGES DRY. Try to ensure that bilges are left dry. This will reduce the risk of freezing water damaging your boat.
11.REMOVE SAILS. Over the Winter months they never get time to dry and algae will start to build up attacking the stitching and causing corrosion in the eyes.
12.RIGGING CHECK. Secure the rigging with shock cord or bungee reducing the movement from the wind and thus reducing wear in the rigging.