Check List for Pacific Northwest Boat Storage


Almost A Member
Oct 23, 2019
Ocean Park, Wa
Weldcraft 24' Ocean King
Winter is here and like a many of us NW boaters the season is over and the boat goes into the shop or gets outside storage. So I've put together what I feel is a minimum of what should be tackled for that storage.

1. Service your engines, that is change all the fluids, filters, pull props and lube the splines, and use the recommended corrosion spray. Its a great time to change out water pump impeller if you haven't in a few years its a simple task. My last fuel up in the marina I always add a fuel stabilizer and run the engines to make sure the stabilized fuel is throughout the system. For small engines I have already disconnected the fuel line and let them run out of fuel and shut down. I also make sure the engines are in the down position if their outboards to drain any remaining water from them and then turn them over a few times with the starter. This will prevent freeze damage.

2. Disconnect your batteries and if you have battery maintainer units like Battery Tender hook them up. I've found the HF little cheap units do just fine provided the battery is fully charged to begin with. However one HF unit to one battery. Good time also if your ambitious to pull the batteries and with a little baking soda scrub them and rinse them off. If your going to that much work leave them out of the boat and bench them with the chargers.

3. Open every dam hatch and cover in your boat unless your one of those that lets you boat sit outside uncovered. Well mine is inside out of the weather so I even open the side windows. I pullout all the clothing, PFDs and even tackle boxes. This is when you find that snack that you couldn't find one day. Check the PFD, if inflation style make sure things are not out of date. I even take the manual blow tube and inflate the PFD to make sure they hold air.

4. Get some air movement in the boat, even if its covered you need some air moving around or that ugly bug called mold will take up residence in your boat. I use a fan that is set into hull and moves air under the floor and out to the bow anchor locker. I also put one of those pancake style dehumidifier units that is nothing but a fan into the cabin area. My thought is you can't have too much air moving.

5. Take that soggy anchor ground line and hang it out to dry. I wrap mine back and forth over the bow rails. It looks weird but it works. Good time to inspect anchor swivels and hardware for rust. I always spray these down with some Corrosion Blocker when doing this.

6. Block up the trailer, get the wheels off the ground. Check brake fluids and make sure if you have a surge brakes the coupler is all the way forward. I do this when I park the trailer by blocking the front of the wheels and then pulling forward before I unhook. This makes sure any and all hydraulic pressure is off the pads and reduces any chance of stuck brakes. "Since I've started doing this I have not had a frozen brake after the trailer sits around.

7. Pour yourself a drink you've done all you can, now sit around the shop's stove, toss in another log and wait for spring.
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