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Guide to winterizing your boat for the season


Guide to winterizing your boat for the season

It’s that time of year again when the boating season for most of us has come to an end and our thoughts turn to winterizing our boats. We try to keep our boat in the water as long as possible, hoping for Indian Summer or that one last beautiful Fall day to enjoy the water with friends and family. But there is always a balance – at least for the crew of Calypso II – to use the boat as late in the season as we can, but still have time to complete all necessary winterizing activities before freezing weather sets in. 

In the Northeast, temperatures can drop below freezing overnight as early as October but definitely by November, and you don’t want to be caught with something not winterized.  Freeze damage can be costly to a boat.

Winterizing activities fall into two groups

Group one are those things that must be completed while the boat is still in the water, because either it requires the engines to run, or in the case of pumping the blackwater tank, the activity cannot be completed once the boat has been pulled out of the water. 

The second group contains those activities, no surprise, that can be completed after the boat has come out of the water.

CHECKLIST: 18 steps to winterize a boat

Below is our checklist of 18 winterizing activities, broken into the two groups mentioned above. We’ve also published videos showing how we do some of the items on the list. Subscribe to our YouTube channel and click the bell to be notified when new content is available.

Have questions or comments about any of the items below? Send them to us via this website, our YouTube Channel or Instagram.

Things to do while the boat is still in the water:

⃞   Have the black water tank pumped empty or do it yourself

⃞    Change the engine and generator oil and filters

⃞  Change the fuel filters

⃞ Top off fuel tank(diesel) add bug inhibitor

Things to do when the boat is out of the water:

⃞ If bottom has not been pressure washed when the boat came out, do that now

⃞ Wash salt off topsides and decks

⃞ Clean railings

⃞ Remove canvas and isinglass and clean-store indoors

⃞ Add antifreeze to the water tank and run liquid through all faucets, showers and hoses, hot and cold!

⃞ Add antifreeze to head bowls and shower sump box

⃞ Pump antifreeze through AC system until all lines are full and water is purged

⃞ Replace engine zincs (if Diesel)

⃞ Remove all food from the refrigerator and cupboards that may go bad

⃞ Remove any liquids that could freeze from storage. Alcohol too.

⃞ Place damp-rid buckets throughout the boat to absorb moisture and help eliminate mold

⃞ Charge batteries, top off wet cells with distilled water – option to remove and store inside

⃞ Shrink-wrap or move boat inside

Look back longingly at the memories and start planning for next season!

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