Parts Manager, Service Adviser
As summer comes to an end, most boat owners are coming up to the annual storage period for their vessel. This is the time when you should be considering a few things. We recommend doing a full service on the engine and drive before the storage period, most people think "spring tune up", but if its done in the winter you won't be on a mile long waiting list when the weather gets nice again. Not to mention your engine and drive won't be sitting with old, possibly caustic fluids for duration of the storage period.
Now you have to find a suitable place to store your boat. Everyone knows that inside storage is best, but it's not always feasible; in which case- Shrink Wrap to the rescue!! Here's what needs to be addressed before shrink wrapping can happen:
- Make sure the boat is DRY! The last think you want to do is unwrap a moldy mess in the spring.
- Remove gear. Especially WET GEAR. A lot of gear (life jackets, for example) tend to hold moisture longer than other surfaces in the boat, bringing us back to unwrapping a moldy mess in the spring. Besides that, in order to properly support the peak of the shrink wrap material, uprights must be utilized, which requires a clear path on the floor.
- Wash the exterior. Dirt and particles can leave scratches in the finish where the band and shrink wrap material are touching the boat, especially if you are planning to trailer the boat anywhere-like from the facility to where you plan on storing it. The wind will cause movement and the dirt acts like sand paper on your nice shiny finish.
Now lets talk about service. Here's some things to consider if you decide to take your boat to a professional service facility. Be considerate of the technician. He or she has devoted their time and in most cases, considerable amounts of money in order to become proficient in what they do-which is service and repair of your engine and drive. Here's how to help:
- Give them a clear path. Remove gear and personal items from engine compartments and anywhere else that they may need to get to. Access to those areas of the boat is already difficult, the fewer obstacles the better. This also saves you any added labor costs that may ensue if too much clean up is needed.
- Another reason to leave your gear at home is that is where it will be when you are ready to use it again. If the facility has to remove gear to access your engine, it will most likely get put in a box and moved onto a shelf to be out of the way, which leaves an opportunity for it to get left behind.
- Same thing applies to bimini tops, unless a repair is being done to the top or rails, it is just one more obstacle for the technician.
- If you have a boat cover, BRING IT! Even if there is no rain in the forecast, the cover will keep debris out of your boat and the sun off the interior while it's outside or not being worked on.