Checklist to help guard against frost, damp, corrosion and theft

The winter months can be tough on your boat.  Not only is it left unattended for longer periods of time but the harsh weather conditions can cause damage. Follow the checklist below to help guard against frost, damp, corrosion and theft:

  • Choose a boat yard with good security, lights, patrols and CCTV
  • Remove all valuable and personal items
  • Store the outboard motor, tender, life-raft, oars and lifebuoys in a secure place
  • Leave all doors (fridge and cooker), lockers and compartments open for ventilation
  • Move all soft furnishings, mattresses and cushions to a dry store
  • Ensure the fuel tank is full throughout the winter to avoid damage caused by damp
  • Change the oil and filter to minimise corrosion from sulphuric acid
  • Lubricate hinges and locks and dress external connectors with petroleum jelly
  • Drain all pipes, pumps and water tanks to prevent freezing
  • Replace fresh cooling water with antifreeze
  • Have engines winterised by a professional, or carefully by yourself
  • Wash and dry mainsails, headsails and sprayhoods and store them in a dry place
  • Disconnect batteries, and keep them fully charged
  • If leaving on covers make sure they are close-fitting. Do not tie chocks, as gales can pull them out
  • Close curtains so no-one can look in
  • Take your personal and vessel papers home with you
  • Finally, visit your boat on a regular basis, as early detection of problems can prevent long-term damage.

 

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