Laying up and fitting out

Check your insurance policy to see if it covers 12 months in commission or if you are required to lay up your boat ashore during the winter months. Most importantly, ensure you maintain full insurance cover when laid up for risks such as storm damage, theft, vandalism and fire, which are more likely to occur during the darker nights and exposed weather conditions.

  • If there is a warranty or endorsement on your policy that requires your boat to be ashore by a certain date, remember it is important that you adhere to this. Plan ahead and book a reputable crane company well in advance. If there are any delays due to weather conditions, tides or crane problems you must contact your insurer immediately for agreement.
  • If you are moving your boat and it requires transportation by road, Saga automatically provides cover whilst in transit (within the UK) subject to conditions. If you are using your own trailer, ensure it is thoroughly checked and serviced if necessary before setting off – it can be a policy condition that the trailer is kept in a roadworthy condition. It is also a condition that a wheel clamp is fitted if left unattended at any time.
  • If you choose to transport your boat using a haulier, Saga will still cover you because haulage companies do not always cover for the full amount of the boat’s value.
  • Winter preparation for your boat is important once ashore, and a few hours spent shutting down in the autumn can provide valuable protection and save valuable time at the start of next season. If you have an engine, get it professionally winterised or carefully follow the instructions for decommissioning it given in the manufacturer’s handbook. In particular, you will need to flush out the raw-water cooling system, drain down and replace the oil, lubricate any external moving parts and give electrical connections a spray of WD40. Batteries will benefit from an occasional recharge. Elsewhere on the boat, you should be carrying out the usual rigging and equipment checks. Replace anything that needs replacing now – or order it in so you don’t have to wait for it to arrive at the start of next season.


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