Can you believe it is October already? This years weather has been unusual to say the least; Spring was late, Summer never really got Hot and now Fall is here. If you are going to put your boat away for the winter, it is time to get your boat prepared now.
If you are going to use your boat all Winter long, you only really need to check your gear oil for water so it doesn't freeze once the weather gets cold. You can now go fishing or hunting as the rest of this blog will do little to help you. If you are going to winterize and store you boat this Winter, the helpful hints below will be of service to you when you do put your boat away later this Fall.
Here are some hints that will aid you in getting your boat ready to store or winterize later this Fall. The biggest problem with today's boats is the use gasoline with ethanol in it. Most people in our region have little choice but to use this product as it is mandated by the EPA for the entire I 95 corridor. In the past manufactures and mechanics recommended filling your gas tanks on your boat with fuel to prevent condensation from building up in your fuel tank. This is no longer the recommendation, keep as little fuel as possible in the fuel tank for storage. Now is the time to start monitoring your boats fuel level and now is the time to start adding a fuel stabilization product with ethanol treatment to your gas every time you fuel up. Here is what I mean by monitoring your fuel level, if you are going boating and plan on running around a lot it is OK to fill the tank up, if you are going out for a couple of hours and have enough fuel in the boat already, don't fuel up. When it gets the time to winterize your boat, you don't want to pump the fuel out of your boat if possible. By adding fuel treatment now, if you get caught and don't take your boat back out, the fuel in the engine will have been already treated. Another item that should be addressed now is water levels in your batteries. If you have maintenance free batteries, again you can now go fishing or hunting. If you have batteries that your can add water to, you should check it now rather than latter. Only use distilled water when filling batteries, you can get an gallon at the grocery store for only a dollar. The reason that you need to do it now is that it will have a chance to charge and cycle the battery. A charged battery can not freeze, if you put the water in latter it is possible that the battery will freeze. By doing it now, you can use the boat and the motor will charge it up.
Do these simple items now and when you get ready to winterize your boat latter this Fall, all the hard items will be easy not having to deal with pumping gas out of your boat or a bad battery next Spring.