It’s important to make sure you have prepared your boat for the colder winter months, particularly freezing temperatures. If you haven’t done it already then make time, as it could save you time and money in the spring by preventing cold damage.
Visit your boat from time to time during the winter to nip any problems in the bud. If there is a cold spell this is particularly important.
Check the manufacturers guide for how to winterise your particular engine type.
If you are being lifted out, run the engine whilst in the water, whilst stationery.
Fill your fuel tank to the brim to prevent condensation and add anti-freeze to help resist the cold.
Change the Engine Oil.
Some people spray their engines with Fogging Oil for protection.
Soft Furnishings / Covers / Valuables:
Remove cushions, covers, bedding etc. to help prevent damp and mould.
If the boat isn’t ventilated, books, musical instruments, sentimental items should be removed to avoid damage.
If there is not a float charge, remove the batteries and store at home.
Batteries should be topped up monthly to ensure they keep maintained.
A float charge does keep batteries topped and give peace of mind.
It is important to prevent liquids in the vessel freezing, so if possible leave tanks empty.
You can add anti-freeze to the system. For safety purposes ensure it is safe for drinking (should contain propylene glycol and be pink). If in doubt make sure you flush the system through thoroughly in the spring.
If you add anti-freeze ensure you see it flowing from taps etc so you are certain it is throughout the whole system.
Be careful to flush the toilet through a few times to ensure it is clean before you anti-freeze the toilet. You should be able to run the anti-freeze through the inlet hose for the toilet. Make sure you run it through sufficiently as above.
Air conditioning can be treated in the same way.
MAKE SURE THE ANTI-FREEZE IS SAFE FOR DRINKING.
ALWAYS CHECK MANUFACTURERS INSTRUCTIONS.
Cover Your Boat / Secure the Halyards
It is a good idea to give the vessel a wash off and then add a strong cover.
Ensure it is lashed down well so it can stand up to high winds.
Double check that halyards are secured and not bashing about. This causes wear and tear which is unnecessary.
Ropes should be coiled and hung in a locker out of the weather.
Fenders should be stowed away.
Loose items on deck such as boat hooks, ladders should be stowed safely.
Ensure perishables are removed.
Check that the date on tins and packets is sufficient. You can use foods up at home and restock in the spring.
Doing a stock take can help you but just the right amount of food year by year.
Iron Wharf Boatyard
Iron Wharf Boatyard in Faversham, Kent provides storage, containers, DIY yard, and many other services.