Steps To Properly Storing Your Boat

Published on 6/2/2016

Boat Storage: Steps To Properly Storing Your Boat


When you are not out on the water, it is important to take care of your boat so it will work properly next time you use it. Since you can’t exactly park your boat in the garage, boat storage is one of the most important things to consider for boat owners. Self storage is a great, affordable solution and there are steps you can take to ensure your boat stays in good condition especially while in storage. Here are some helpful steps you can use for storing your boat at a self storage facility. Keeping it safe and clean until it's time to hit the water again.

  • To prevent dirty oil from sitting in the engine, it’s a good idea to change the oil and the filter. The engine is a very expensive part of your boat; you want to keep it clean even when you are not using it.

  • The next step will be draining the engine's cooling system. For closed system engines, refill it with the antifreeze and water solution recommended by the manufacturer. For open system boats, insert a clean garden hose into the intake opening and flush it with clean water. Locate the coolant drains and open them, allowing the system to drain completely.

  • If your boat has a carburetor, use the drain screw located at the bottom of the bowl to drain all of the gas from the tank. Once the fuel has been drained, replace the screw and refill the tank with the manufacturer's recommended fuel stabilizer.

  • The battery should be disconnected and all of the terminals should be cleaned and sprayed with anti-corrosion liquid. Store the battery, and don’t forget to put it on charge while the boat is in storage for about 2-3 days each month.

  • Here’s where things get a little messy. The holding tank for bathroom waste should be pumped as dry as possible. A boatyard is recommended to do this step at unless you are able to remove the tank from the boat without difficulty. Once emptied, the tank should be treated with a deodorizing solution.

  • Take all of your equipment and personal effects out of the boat, including life jackets, sails, seat covers, etc. These objects will likely collect moisture causing mold or mildew if left in storage with the boat.

  • All storage lockers and hatches should be left open while your boat is in storage. This will keep air flowing so there is no stale smell when winter is over and its time to get back out on the boat.