With the season fast approaching, we thought we would share our ten top tips for getting you and your boat ready for the summer! Assuming the boat has been properly winterised, these tips will get you up and running in no time!
1. Scan the hull for any damage
An important but often overlooked step: as soon as the cover comes off scan the hull for any cracks, holes or potential damage. Completing this step sooner rather than later will ensure the condition will not deteriorate and will prevent you from facing issues on the day of your launch or, even worse, at sea!
2. Give your boat a deep clean
One of the first things we would suggest is a thorough, intensive clean. We understand that this step is highly laborious and, as a result, is often ignored but making sure your boat is thoroughly cleaned of all grime and debris that has likely accumulated over the winter will help keep every part of the boat in tip top condition and running smoothly!
3. Thoroughly check the engine
This includes everything! From checking the fuel to checking the batteries. Make sure everything is in position and with minimal corrosion; ensure there is oil with no hint of fuel, check the wires are secure and there are no hints of any leaks. Charge the battery and make sure the kill cord still works. Finally get the engine running! Always remember that we, as marine engineers, will happily check the engine for you.
4. Oil Change
Having checked the oil, now is the time for the oil change. This isn't always a necessity as oil changes should be made based on how many hours have been used. As a rough guideline, this should be every 100 hours or once a year but can be less - if you have changed it recently but have not done many hours, consider missing this step.
It is always a good idea to schedule your services for before the season - this will mean that your boat or engine will be prepped and in good shape in time for you to use. It will also provide an extra layer of security should you accidentally miss anything in your checks. We recommend this to our customers!
As marine engineers, we always believe that antifouling is a very important step. Fouling is the build up of plant and animal life on your boat and, more importantly, the hull. As we mentioned earlier, this can cause major damage to your hull and the workings of your boat, so we always consult the customer about antifouling when a boat comes to us. Not only will antifouling help with the damage in the season, it will also make your life easier when it comes to winterising! Give us a call for any questions on this topic!
It goes without saying, but it never hurts to check! Ensure your insurance, registration and licence is all correct and up-to date and there are copies aboard your vessel.
8. Safety Equipment
Another very important aspect! Some safety equipment, including flares, have an expiration date! Pre-season is always a good time to find what you are missing or what you need. We stock most safety equipment including life jackets in our in-house shop!
9. Trailer Safety
Just like with engines, trailers also need servicing; pre-season is a great time to do that! Making sure the lights, wheels and body are all working and in good condition is essential when it comes to launching your boat. You don't want to risk any surprise accidents!
10. Finally, bring the boat to JJB Marine Specialists!
For any advice, questions or concerns, a marine engineer at JJB Marine Specialists will be happy to assist you in your pre-season checks. To make sure your season goes smoothly and safely, we are always here to help no matter the problem.
This concludes our ten top tips for season preparation and we hope they are helpful. It is important to remember that once a season checks are no substitute for pre-use checks and should always be carried out in correspondence with regular maintenance.