Boat & Watercraft Storage
Boat Storage FAQs
Keep your boat in good condition for years to come by taking the time to ensure you boat is stored properly. To truly protect your boat from the elements, pests, extreme weather, and other harms, you should consider a storage unit rather than leaving your boat in the backyard or driveway. You’ve invested a lot of money in this boat, you should do everything you can to make sure you get your money’s worth.
Frequently asked questions about boat storage:
- Do I need to winterize my boat if it’s stored inside a heated storage unit?
- Yes. You’ll want to drain the fuel or run the engine with a fuel stabilizer. Because the boat won’t be outside in frigid temperatures you won’t need to antifreeze the system since the chance of the engine freezing won’t be an issue. Review your owner’s manual for additional tips and insights for storing your boat over the winter months.
- How do I keep moisture away from my boat while in storage?
- Before renting any outdoor storage unit, check the unit for any leaks or cracks in the walls and ceiling. If you’re still worried about moisture getting into your storage unit, or live in a high humidity area, you can use charcoal, kitty litter, or any other moisture absorber to help protect your items. If using any one of these moisture absorbers, remember to check on them every few weeks and change them out. Another option for ensuring moisture stays out of your unit is to rent a climate-controlled storage unit. These units were created for storing items that have a greater chance of being damaged due to humidity or extreme temperatures.
- How do I prevent musty smells on my boat while in storage?
- One way to keep musty and other unwanted odors at bay by placing open boxes of baking soda around (and inside) your boat. Another option for keeping odors away is to use desiccant bags which is great for keeping odors away.
- Should I leave my boat fuel tanks full of ethanol during the 5+ months of winter storage?
- You should never leave ethanol in your fuel tanks. Ethanol absorbs water out of the atmosphere and will cause rust in your tanks.
- How do I winterize my boat?
- To winterize your boat, once the boat is out of the water, follow these simple tips to protect your boat over the winter:
- Check the hull for gelcoat blisters, cracks, or any other damage with may have happened over the summer.
- Clean your motors to protect them from barnacles or any other unwanted guest which may cause serious to your boat. In addition, use this time to washing and waxing your hull to remove any dirt, algae, and other scum. This is also a good time to clean the inside of your boat, such as the vinyl which can dry and crack or, in humid areas, be the perfect place for mildew to grow.
- Remove any electronics you can to protect them from the harsh environment winter may bring. Once you’ve transferred the electronics into a safe place, spray a moisture-displacing lubricant over the disclosed electrical connections.
- While you’re tending to the interior of your boat, this is the perfect time to wash down walls and vacuum any carpet. Also, if your boat has a removable head, remove the piece and clean it (make sure it is dried well) before you store the boat for the winter.
- Drain your fuel engine and flush the engine out flush out with fresh water. After the engine is cleaned out, add anti-freeze your engine and lines to protect them from freezing. If your boat has any sinks or showers, check to ensure they are drained and filled with antifreeze.
- Now that you’ve cleaned out the interior of your boat and flushed out your engines, keep the exterior of your boat protected by cover. As you decide on a cover for your boat, choose a cover that will the waterline. In addition, you will want to have a frame over your boat to ensure the weight of the snow is distributed evenly. If you don’t have a frame around your boat, there are some aluminum tubing kits you can get to ensure your boat is protected.
If you have any questions about preparing your boat for the winter, refer to the owner’s manual.