Ready To Launch? 3 Boat Parts That May Need To Be Replaced After A Long Winter In Storage

Whether its a modest river fishing boat, a mid-size ski boat for lake use, or an ocean-going skiff, it's a sure bet that you are eager to get your vessel out of storage and ready to launch as soon as summer arrives each year. But taking shortcuts at this critical time is sure to increase the chances that your boat will suffer a mechanical issue and need to be towed back to the shore. If you would like to make sure that your first summer voyage will be a successful one, here are some critical parts you should check before that first launch of the boating season. 

Is the battery still capable of supplying full charge? 

Without the battery to help you start the engine and keep the electronics functional, you could be unable to restart your boat while out on the water. Boat owners should always keep an inexpensive battery tester on hand and form the proactive habit of checking the battery as part of each pre-launch routine. If the battery test shows that the battery is strong, take a moment to check the battery cables for damage and remove any corrosion that may have formed. If the battery does not test within the appropriate range, replacing it before you launch will help to ensure that your outing is fun and trouble-free.

Are the fuel lines free of cracks and damage? 

Getting fuel to the motor is a critical part of ensuring that it will run smoothly and carry your passengers safely while out on the water. During the months of storage, fuel lines can rust from condensation or split from age or temperature conditions. Checking your boat's fuel lines takes only a few seconds, but doing so can mean the difference between having a great time on the water or having to flag down assistance because you are stranded without power.

Are the electronics fully functional? 

Depending on the type and size of the boat, you probably have some combination of bilge pumps to remove excess water from inside the boat and a variety of electrical lights and systems on board. Taking a moment to verify that each of these components is fully functional will help to eliminate any unpleasant surprises out on the water. 

Having access to a reputable marine supply store is a boater's best option for purchasing high-quality marine supplies, boat parts, safety gear, and maintenance needs for all types of boats and watercraft.