Row of boats in storage for the winter under the awning. Warehouse on the boat pier. Concept preparation for winter.

How To Prepare Your Boat for Storage

We’ve all heard of the Baby Boom and the Economic Boom, but now we’re experiencing a Boating Boom. Manufacturers are experiencing an exponential sales increase, and it doesn’t look like it will slow down anytime soon.

If you’re a first-time boater, there is a lot of information to learn. What about caring for your boat? Do you know how to store it properly?

During the winter, icy water can cause untold damage to your boat. Therefore, you must haul it out and store it for the season.

By taking time to prepare your boat for storage, you can be one of the first back on the water. Follow our easy steps on how to store your boat.

Rinse and Drain

After hauling your boat out of the water, the next crucial step is to rinse and drain the inside and outside. Any saltwater remnants can corrode it and even affect the engine cooling system.

Use a pressure jet on the hull to remove salt and areas of grime. At the same time, check the rudders and propellers for barnacles. Then, wash the interior as per the manufacturers’ instructions.

After you have washed everything, drain away all of the water. You will also need to flush the engine with non-toxic antifreeze before storage.

Wrap It Twice, Keep It Nice

Some people choose not to shrinkwrap their boats. However, for added protection, we’d recommend not skipping this stage. You can buy shrinkwrap from most hardware stores for an affordable price.

Also, if you live in a damp or humid area, consider putting a few moisture absorbers in for added peace of mind.

Once you have fully wrapped the boat, lay the custom-made cover over it. The cover has breathable vents and is key to keeping out moisture and mildew.

Choose Your Storage Location

The cost of storing a boat through the winter depends on a few variables. The first variable is whether you will keep it at home or in boat storage facilities. Storing your boat at home is cheaper, but you will need to purchase additional equipment and tools.

Keeping it in a dedicated unit offers extra protection such as climate control and CCTV. We’d recommend that you find out more information before deciding which option is best for you.

Storage for Boats Checklist

Follow our handy checklist to make sure you are ready for boat storage:

  • Rinse and drain everything in your boat
  • Flush the systems with antifreeze
  • Put fuel stabilizer in the gas tank (if desired)
  • Allow the boat to dry
  • Remove the battery (if storing for an extended period)
  • Consider using moisture absorbers if you live in a damp climate
  • Shrinkwrap your vessel to protect against mildew
  • Use a custom-made protective cover

Prepare Your Boat for Storage

By following these tips on how to prepare your boat, you know it will remain in pristine condition until the next season. If this is your first season, you might want to hire an experienced hand to help with storage. You can learn from them how to do it properly.

Happy sailing!