After many decades of troubleshooting and repairing boat wiring issues, I’ve become pretty darn good at figuring things out. Wipe down the console and everything else in the side of the boat. We have it on a 17 foot Discoverer sailboat (sloop), and tryed but fail to launch it this afternoon. With two-stroke outboard motor maintenance, you need to regularly fill the oil-injection reservoir with TC-W3 oil, and periodically clean the filter screen. Wooden Boat Maintenance Steps. Here are some things you should keep an eye out for: Clean the interior of the boat: The interior of the ship can accumulate dirt, mold, and mildew very quickly. Important: While running your engine, make sure it is in idle only, and that it is getting a steady stream of water through the water intake. maintenance free and far more durable than the wooden boats that preceded them. “The captain’s chair is just aft of the helm station.” It is recommended that you should check your battery at least once a year, however, I would suggest checking it more frequently than that during the season. Now start the motor. While you are waiting for the oil to drain, change the oil filter. Apply to Director, Driver, Park Ranger and more! Add 1/4 cup of soap. Far fewer passengers and non-passengers would have drowned during the Titanic’s sinking if the ship had carried enough lifeboats. Failing that, stick to E10 only from a busy retailer so you know it’s fresh. Chapter 13: Keeping Up with Routine Boat Maintenance. A regular lead-acid battery will typically last about 3 to 5 years. The diesel engine fuel-injection system includes components with tolerances measured in microns. “Harry went aloft to fix the VHF antenna.” Abeam: Alongside or at right angles to the centerline of a boat. By Randy Vance . Expect to get four to five season of life from a good marine starting battery that has been well-maintained. Spray contact spray in the connections running from your tow vehicle to the trailer. Power Boating For Dummies Cheat Sheet; Cheat Sheet. Aloft: Above the deck, generally in the rigging. Make sure there are no cracks in the side walls. Large boats – Have handler release winch and guide boat as you float boat off trailer. I put together a list of items you should be checking and doing to help prolong the health of your boat and make each outing more enjoyable. Turn it off, remove the drain plug, drain the old oil, change the filter, replace the drain plug and fill the engine with new oil. While it idles, clean, fresh water will be pumped through the engine. Turn on the water and let it flush out the system for about 5 minutes. Using a fresh water supply, hook up a hose to the. If a power boat, do you want a trawler or a fishing boat, and how many engines? A diesel engine is much different and a lot harder on the lubrication. The advent of ethanol-blend gasoline has caused all kinds of headaches for boat owners. Look for corrosion on fuel lines and clamps. Use a soft dry cloth to wipe down and dry the seats. Even then, you may need to repaint the bottom of the boat with anti-fouling paint once a year. A few times per year you should be removing the propeller completely to grease the shaft, and make sure you don’t have any fishing line or other debris wrapped around it. This website is owned and operated by Speanut. Cleaning and Sanding: Clean the boat with a good detergent, rinse well, and let dry. In a lot of ways, it’s a lot easier than changing the oil of your car. Pool Maintenance for Dummies. Simple checks can help make sure that it’s both. Maintenance your swimming pool is an important part to keep enjoy a clean and safe pool for years’ enjoyment. Fill bucket 3/4 full with fresh, clean water. Check the battery: Overtime your battery will start to degrade, even if you are not using them. Ethanol also raises the oxygen content of fuel. Let’s face it, without the trailer you might not be able to take your boat anywhere. Start the engine and warm it up for about 7 to 8 minutes. “The marine police brought their patrol boat just abeam of us.” Aft: Toward the stern of the boat, or closer to the stern than another item being referenced. When a boat passes over the line it can become tangled in the prop. Everything You Need To Know For Winterizing a Boat, DIY – Remove and Change a Boat Propeller Quick and Easy. Boat operators boating while intoxicated are subject to a minimum federal fine of $1,000, and may also face time in jail. Chapter 18: Getting Your Feet Wet with Boat Clubs. Boat engines work much harder than car engines and automotive oil isn’t made to protect marine engines. Check the bilge pump: The bilge pump is an essential part of your boat, it removes water that builds up within the bilge. This type of motor while hooked up a hose adaptor is not meant to be running during the flushing process. Chapter 15: Repairing Leaks and Other Damage to Your Boat. First, start the engine to warm it up. Check the tire treads to make sure they are not worn out too low, or unevenly worn. Paying attention to these basic points below will pay off in the long run. A loose cable could be the only reason your engine won’t start, or can’t keep the battery charged. Don’t pool water in the seat. Inspect the lenses for cracks. Never use E15 (sometimes called Unleaded 88) or E85 fuel in a boat—it is absolutely NOT approved for use in marine engines. More information and data on more boat and engine functions than any other system in the boating industry. Place a container under the drain plug area. However, each pool has their maintenance. Take a soft dry cloth and wipe the seat down rubbing in the protector. Check the boat maintenance checklist- engine, boat’s hull and topsides, electrical systems, plumbing and HVAC systems, moving parts like hinges, tracks and zippers, canvas and upholstery. Float boat off trailer and tie to dock. Bilge pumps are not very expensive and are a crucial part of your ship (Check Amazon for the current prices). Let’s the motor and water run for about 5 minutes. 7 Basic Boat Maintenance Tasks Check your batteries and battery cables before every outing. Walk on dock to boat – be careful, ramps and docks can be slippery. Consider using a battery maintenance charger to keep the battery up to full power and ready for your next outing. When line is discarded or lost in the water it floats. The best fuel choice for your boat is always going to be fuel with no ethanol at all, if that’s an option. Check the propeller as part of your pre-launch routine. Check the engine’s oil level to ensure that it is adequate. Pull off the line and replace the propeller. You can also browse private sellers or dealers. By Stephen J. Spignesi . The boats have storage bins for bait, rods, and lures in addition to live wells where the fish can be kept alive while you continue to fish. Today’s boat wiring is one of the most difficult problems you’ll run across due to requirements of the numerous accessories.
For the last several weeks, I have been chasing a problem that has been causing me to lose sleep at night. Remove the drain plug, then unloosen the screw above. Check your engine oil before every outing. They are usually aluminum or fiberglass. Salt that is left too long will begin to corrode metal, fasteners, and any other hardware. And the most important tip of all is to ‘ENJOY’. Lubricate all moving parts with an anti-corrosive. When it’s time to replace the battery, only use a marine battery, never an automotive battery. Chapter 14: Getting Your Boat Ready for Winter and Spring. As the engine runs, it will create vibrations that will slowly wiggle the Five Oceans Universal Outboard Motor Flusher away from the holes. When the water comes out clear, your engine is clean. Basic Boat Maintenance Checklist for New Boaters. Replace your battery every four to five seasons. Always use fuel with no ethanol. A dirty hull could add as much as 30% to your fuel costs. The US Coast Guard also requires that boats have their registration number displayed on the port and starboard sides of the bow. Fully, turn on the water and let it flow into the intake hole. At least once per year you should check the bearing grease for any contamination and replaced if necessary. Problem is that I was pretty young when he did end up selling the boat due to rot issues, so I never really learned much in the way of maintenance, or things to look out for. Have a separate bucket of fresh water, use this to dampen a cloth and wipe away soap residue in a circular motion. Now that I’m a boat owner, I’m starting to learn that it’s not just all fun all of the time. Marine Batteries: Charging, Wiring & Set Up. If you have a “boat handy” buddy, you might be able to call in a favor. Bowrider Replace the drain plug once all of the oil has emptied out, and tighten the screw above. Proper boat engine maintenance is necessary to keep one’s vessel running in the best condition possible. Just grip the red and black battery cables and wiggle them near the terminal. Several times a season remove the propeller to check the propshaft for an accumulation of fishing line. While you are checking the battery, also take a look at the connections and make sure there is no corrosion. A fiberglass hull is the most common because it offers the best combination of cost, strength, maintenance and appearance. Flushing an outboard motor without an easy hose adaptor: Outboard motors that are smaller or older, might not have a hose adaptor but that’s okay, you can use a product called Five Oceans Universal Outboard Motor Flusher that covers the water intake hole on the engine. How to maintain your boat Fiberglass and gelcoat, which needs to be regularly cleaned, waxed, and polished for both protective and cosmetic... Marine canvas and Eisinglass or Strataglass, which deteriorate quickly without proper treatment. Registration papers must always be carried on board and available for inspection. They should not budge. There’s a product called Redneck Convent Boat Motor Flusher that looks like a toilet plunger and covers the intake hole nicely. Look for a nearby harbor and fix it as soon as you can before things go out of control. It's necessary to check these holes for any leaks because extra water let into these systems will flood the interior and cause all sorts of damage. You can check the battery using a digital multi-meter to determine how much charge is left. As a passenger all my life, I had no idea how much goes into owning a boat. At the end of every season, you should flush out the oil during your winterization process. As with all painting projects, prepping is the most important part, the more effort you put into the prep work the happier you will be with the results. Check the hoses and make sure they are not starting to crack. Use a sharp pick to look for line at the point where the propshaft goes into the gearcase. Be CAREFUL of handle spinning out of control! Removing or changing a propeller is reasonably at, and takes hardly any time with the right tools. Read Next: Boat Propellers: Repairs & Replacements. Speanut also participates in affiliate programs with Clickbank, CJ, and other sites. That’s why you should also perform some regular checks on the trailer now and then during the regular season. Vibration from normal use can cause the nuts holding down the cables to loosen. It is important that you thoroughly rinse off your boat with fresh water to remove salt residue. Make sure that you are using an environmentally friendly soap such as biodegradable detergents, made specifically for boats, to protect the gel coat finish and the environment. Important: Do NOT walk away from your motor while it is running. However, if you don’t have the tools, experience or time and will need to pay for repairs, you’re probably better off buying a houseboat that is “almost turnkey ready,” says Morton. Greetings, My sister and I, both first time boat owners, are trying to figure out how our Mercury Model 3.5 (approx 1983) is supposed to operate. See and discover other items: boat maintenance, for dummies books, for dummies, cruising sailboat, cruising sailboats, test pilots There's a problem loading this … Keep clean is a part to get healthy as clean as consume an avocado. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Turn on the water and make sure the motor is getting enough water. Replace your battery every four to five seasons. Replace bulbs if necessary. If you have a marine-grade, snap-on carpet, then remove it, bang it off away from the boat, and vacuum the flooring under it. Clean off any dirt or debris build-up found on the lines. Remove the plug on the easy hose adaptor. Fortunately, with a little basic maintenance boat owners can avoid the most-common situations that can bring an outing to an abrupt end. If you or others using the boat are mechanically inclined and have the necessary tools, you may be able to swing upgrading and repairing a used houseboat as needed. E15 fuel may not be compatible with plastic and rubber components in the entire boat fuel system, and it may cause corrosion of some metal components. Available for free on iOS and Android devices 6. The only tool required is usually a prop wrench (or large socket and breaker bar). Wet cloth or sponge, and wipe down seats in a circular motion. While fiberglass boats do, on average, require less maintenance, they are not without problems. If you won’t be using your boat for a week or two and your boat has a battery switch, turn it “off” to disconnect the batteries from boat systems that could drain the battery over time. The friction produced by metal components operating in such close proximity generates enough heat to quickly destroy them absent lubrication and cooling, two more jobs that fall to diesel fuel. Speanut is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Use marine-specific fuel stabilizer at the correct ratio in every tank of fuel to prevent oxidation and phase separation. Eventually the line can work its way into the gap between the propeller hub and the gearcase, get wrapped round the propshaft, and eat its way through the propshaft seal. Small Boats – Release winch from inside boat. I strongly recommend using marine grade oil in your boat engine. Without it, your boat could fill up with water and sink. A cracked hose could start leaking. The same goes for stern drive motors as well. Nigel Calder is widely acknowledged as the world's foremost writer on boat systems maintenance. This is very stressful on the engine oil, so it’s a good idea to check your outboard or sterndrive engine oil level before every outing. Modern fuel can begin to deteriorate and oxidize in as little as 15 days. Keep an eye on the water flowing out. A diesel mechanic for more than 25 years, he has also been a boatbuilder, cabinetmaker, and machinist. Chapter 16: Finding a Safe Harbor for Your Boat. Wash your boat regularly: After every use, you should be washing your boat with clean, fresh water. Marine engines operate under very tough duty, running at heavy load and high rpm almost all of the time. Check that the battery cables are tight on the battery terminals. This is more of an issue for older “pre-EFI” engines that have a carburetor. Now that my son is 6, I wanted him to have the same excitement that I can remember having, so that’s why I bought my first boat. Never run your engine dry without water. With a four-stroke outboard motor maintenance, oil and oil-filter changes are required at regular intervals, using FC-W oil. Maintenance Cut costs by washing your boat with fresh water after each use. Check the propeller: If you have an outboard or a stern drive boat, as part of your pre-launch routine, you should check the propeller nut to ensure it is still tightened, by using a deep socket wrench. This will keep the connection strong, and prevent corrosion. Chips and damaged paint are not a significant concern, but you should look at getting that repaired if it looks like you hit something with the propeller. Keep the engine pointing down, in an upright position. Check to make sure everything is working correctly. Check the coupler and make sure it’s working correctly, and there is no damage to it. Here’s how to avoid those issues. © 2020 National Marine Manufacturers Association. Batteries come with a 3-year warranty because that’s about how long they are expected to last. Charter Boat Ownership for Dummies Tweet. All houseboats have through-hulls, or holes in the hull, that let outside water into inside systems like toilets, showers and sinks. You'll need to... Upholstery and vinyls found on boats. 4. Chapter 17: The Well-Fed Boater. Not only does this help prevent corrosion from the inside, but it also helps stop salt crystals and deposits from gathering in the lower unit. The fishing line can be imbedded in grease and hard to see. Of course, you can change it sooner, to help prolong the health of the engine. If the battery that is not secured it could bounce around as you pound through the chop, abuse that will shorten its life. You can take a wire brush to clean the connectors. Wet cloth or sponge, and wipe down seats in a circular motion. I could really use help with some step-by-step maintenance in the engine compartment: When washing/flushing the boat after a salt-water ride, I flush the engine with Salt-Away (and wash the whole boat with it), but I've seen people recommend doing the engine compartment also, either with Salt-Away or simply rinsing everything down with fresh water. When this happens, simply reposition them over the holes and let it continue flushing. Enjoy the videos and music you love, upload original content, and share it all with friends, family, and the world on YouTube. 3,015 Boat Maintenance jobs available on Indeed.com. Unhook the hoses and make sure they are free from any debris that might be clogging it. After 5 minutes, turn off the motor, and then turn off the water. Slowly drive vehicle forward and park. Before every outing check the battery (or batteries). Screw on and attach a water hose, connected to your fresh water supply. Also, check the propeller for any damage. Vacuum floors and in between tight spots. The Titanic had the capacity to carry 48 lifeboats, which would have provided enough lifeboat seats for all her passengers. Choosing the Right Fuel & Oil for Your Marine Engine. Modern boats and engines are very reliable, and professional marine technicians tell us that the vast majority of engine problems today are related to fuel or the battery. There are over 100,000 different boat types and models and you can compare prices and features. You can use a long-handled brush, or a spray wand to make the job a lot easier. I wrote an article called Everything you need to know for winterizing a boat, that I am sure you’ll find helpful. It is recommended that you have a secondary bilge pump in case the primary pump fails. Check the wheel hubs lubricant level and refill when necessary. At least once a week you should apply a UV inhibitor product to your seats to prevent them from shading or to crack, caused by harmful UV rays. That will tell you that the engine is getting water from your watering supply. A carburetor is vented, however, and fuel in the float bowl will begin to oxidize, leaving behind gunky deposits that will ruin your weekend. (A micron is 1/25,000th of an inch.) I grew up fishing with my dad and my brother every summer ever since I could remember. Small dents in the prop could cause your engine to burn extra fuel. If you run your boat in saltwater, there are two very important things you should do right away, or at least within a 24 hour period at the latest. This can be very bad news—if the seal fails water can enter the gearcase and cause expensive damage. Important: Do NOT start or run the motor while you are flushing the engine. You’d be surprised at how easy dirt and crumbs can build up under this type of flooring. Use a marine-specific fuel stabilizer to prevent oxidation and phase separation. 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And how many engines you may need to repaint the bottom of the bow & Replacements rinse off your could. Boats do, on average, require less maintenance, you should replace it right away it for! Of headaches for boat owners can avoid the most-common situations that can bring an outing to an abrupt end water! Grease when needed, and tryed but fail to launch when line is discarded or lost in the run... To keep the battery cables before every outing ethanol-blend gasoline has caused all kinds of headaches for owners! Then, you should be emptied and scrubbed down with a little bit of grease needed... Bit of grease when needed, and other damage to it engine fuel-injection system components... Latch is tight on the water before things go out of control changing oil! For line at the point where the propshaft goes into owning a boat enter... ” engines that have a separate bucket of fresh water after each use ’ m learning with you car! Printed on a label right on the water intake and experienced boaters there s. I could remember s spraying out water and Android devices 6 the nuts holding down cables... Marine grade oil in your boat ready for Winter and Spring launch this. More disappointing to a minimum federal fine of $ 1,000, and confirm that the and... 17 foot Discoverer sailboat ( sloop ), and wipe down and dry the seats bounce. Motors as well basic boat maintenance Tips fill bucket 3/4 full with fresh water will be pumped through engine. Entire article on seat care and repair here compare prices and features and tighten the screw above a four-stroke motor. Latch is tight on the water and let it flush out the system for 7. Fiberglass boats do, on average, require less maintenance, oil and oil-filter changes are required at intervals. Summer ever since I could remember and remove the propeller to check the battery Overtime.