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Boat Winterizing Checklist we use on our boat

Boat Winterizing Steps Boat Winterizing Checklist

If you live somewhere where you pull your boat in the fall and store it over the winter months, this article is for you.

We live in the Northeastern United States in Vermont and store our boat on the hard from late September through mid-May.
 
Here are the steps that we follow for Winterizing our boat, S/V "Second Wind", in an easy checklist format.
 
This list will help you come up with your own personalized checklist for your boat depending on what equipment you have.
 
WINTERIZING CHECKLIST: 
 
 Pump out the head storage tank
 Remove dinghy Davits
 Remove the anchor and rode from the anchor locker
 Remove the dodger and bimini as needed
 Winterize Engine:
  •  Remove water intake hose on water impeller
  •  Attach a clear hose to engine fitting
  •  Put the end of the hose in Gallon of engine antifreeze and start the engine
  •  Ensure antifreeze comes out the thru hull fitting
  •  Shut down the engine
Empty freshwater tanks - check/clean water pump filter first
 
 
Hot water tank:
  •  Drain water from the tank
  •  Attach 5/8" ID hose (attach to bottom fitting before removing top fitting)
  •  Use a shut-off valve on the drain line
  •  Drain tank into lower storage compartment using a bucket and dump as needed
  •  Install hot water tank bypass fitting - connects input and output lines on hot water tank together (this saves a lot of antifreeze)
Flush/Pump fresh water antifreeze thru:
  •  Fresh water lines using water pressure pump - open all faucets and check both the hot and cold sides
  •  Icebox/cooler drain hand pump
  •  Head and both lines on anti-siphon fitting
  •  Arid Bilge Vacuum until the antifreeze comes out the thru hull fitting
  •  Manual bilge pump & automatic bilge pump until the antifreeze comes out the thru hull fitting(s)
  •  Add antifreeze to the bilge
 Remove various items from the boat:
  •  Brass clock
  •  Compass - put plastic over the opening
  •  Solar panel 
  •  Sails
  •  Dodger and Bimini canvas
  •  Cushions
  •  Boat grill, cover & tools
  •  Safety Equipment:
    •  PFDs / Lifejackets
    •  Throwable(s)
    •  Flares
    •  Life sling/horseshoe throwable
    •  Fire extinguishers
    •  Handheld VHF
    •  Binoculars
Set up winter cover frame:
  •  Start assembling the frame at the bow
  •  Bring up front cover canvas section before stern section frame is up
  •  Finish stern section frame, bring up stern section cover
  •  Install the bow cover section and then the stern cover section
  •  Tie boom to winter cover frame using sail ties or other short lines
 Fuel tank:
  • Add diesel/gas stabilizer to the fuel tank - follow instructions on the bottle
  • Fill fuel tank - use siphon hose
 Batteries:
  •  Charge batteries
  • Disconnect batteries
  • Remove batteries and bring home
 Ensure all thru hulls are in the open position
 

 Below are some pictures showing some of the above steps:

 
 Boom tied to Winter Cover FrameHot Water Tank Bypass FittingWinter Cover Frame Going UpIce Box Manual Pump
 
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You may have other work items for your boat depending on the different systems and electronics that you have. This list should give you a good starting point for winterizing your boat.

Please comment on this blog below if you have other things that you do to your boat for winter storage or you can shoot me an email at Steve@seadogboatingsolutions.com

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