There are very few drawbacks to owning a boat that gets frequent use, especially when one considers the endless recreational pursuits that are only possible through the use of a boat. Whether these pursuits include a daylong fishing trip, an exhausting afternoon of watersports or just a relaxing evening spent enjoying a clear and cloudless day out on the water, boat enthusiasts are able to enjoy a great deal of benefits as a result of owning a boat. While these benefits are quite varied, it is important to note that there are some basic maintenance requirements that need to be understood in order to ensure that the boat remains in perfect working condition for many years to come.
Regular Maintenance Tasks
Boaters familiar with the work of 1 Stop Maintenance will immediately understand the rationale behind the property management company’s focused approach when it comes to performing even the most simple but necessary responsibilities. While One Stop Maintenance operates in a different industry, boaters can learn a great deal from the company’s philosophy and would be wise to apply this philosophy to their own boat maintenance schedule.
In terms of specifics, boaters should already recognize the importance of regularly washing their boat. This is especially true of a boat used in saltwater, as any salt that is left behind can degrade the metal fasteners along with the boat’s protective coating in relatively short order. After each outing, boaters should take the time to patiently and thoroughly wash the boat so that its lifespan is not shortened unnecessarily. This may mean cutting a trip out on the water short by a few minutes, but losing 15 minutes of time on the water is a far better outcome than the alternative.
In addition to washing the boat, owners should also take a look at the propeller each time they return from the water and again before they launch. While a quick visual inspection can reveal any major flaws, the propeller should be removed every so often for a more thorough inspection. A damaged propeller can lead to inefficient performance and wasted fuel, so there is a great deal of value in taking the few moments required to look the propeller over before and after use.
After every 100 hours of boat usage, it becomes quite likely that the oil will need to be changed. This can be done by the owner with relative simplicity, but there are also boat dealerships that will service the boat in this way if the owner does not wish to change the oil on their own. Boat owners should understand that the engine demands placed on a boat are much different than those placed on a car, so regularly changing the oil and utilizing marine-grade oil is of particular importance.
Seasonal Maintenance Responsibilities
There are a number of maintenance tasks that do not need to be performed with the frequency of the aforementioned responsibilities, but that does not mean that these tasks are any less important to boaters. Depending on the climate, boaters may need to take a number of steps to ensure their boat is properly prepared for the winter months. This may include different forms of protection from the elements through the use of everything from shrink-wrapping to months-long storage.
When spring rolls around, the boat has to be prepared for the peak boating season. Most boaters create a spring checklist of the various maintenance tasks that have to be performed, with a focus on everything from the fuel system to the safety gear. While performing spring maintenance, boaters have to remember to look over each of the following components and to make any repairs that are necessary:
• Fuel and electrical systems
• Fluid levels, oil filters and drive lubricants
• Propeller along with whole of boat’s exterior
• Hoses, cables and belts
This is especially true following a cold winter season since many of the rubber components can crack or become quite brittle due to low temperatures. Of course, it is absolutely imperative that boat owners also inspect all of the safety equipment to make sure safety requirements are met and all of the equipment will function in the way it is intended in the event of an unforeseen accident. With proper preparation and care, regular boat maintenance can extend the hours of enjoyment the boat is able to provide and can ensure that the passengers are kept safe at all times.