Great Tips for Winter Boat Storage
Any type of extended storage for your boat requires proper preparation. However, winter storage requires you to focus not only on the boat but the motor and trailer as well. Without proper storage techniques you may not have a boat to use when the weather improves. So follow the next few steps to safely store your boat for the winter. The items you will need to do this include storage/fogging oil, fuel stabilizer, anti-corrosion spray, spray lube, trailer jack and toolbox. The first step is to add the fuel stabilizer. A good rule is to add one ounce of fuel stabilizer to every gallon of gas you have left in the fuel tank. You need to fill the fuel tank full to avoid condensation, oxidation and spoilage. If you don't have undoped gas in your tank then you will need to drain all your fuel systems before storage, this includes the lines, VRO and OMC motors. Now start the flusher and run it up until its warm, which takes about ten to fifteen, minutes. You want to make sure the treated fuel gets throughout the whole system. Cover the carburetors with the fogging oil equally. On some boats this will be easy since there is a fitting where you can apply this. Sometimes it may be difficult to find openings, but it is important to cover the whole carburetor in fogging oil. The engine may smoke more than usual during this process, but that is normal. Once you have finished running the motor you should unhook the flusher and drain the gear case. Once this is done refill it with fresh lube. Any water in the gear case can cause it to freeze and burst during the winter. If you notice that the fluid is milky in appearance then you may also want to replace the prop shaft seal at this time as well to avoid costly repairs later on down the line. The fourth step is to pull spark plugs and depending on their condition replace them. While the spark plugs are removed tilt the engine up and spray fogging oil directly onto the cylinders. To distribute the fogging oil on the cylinder walls you should turn the engine by hand. You should also clean the build up off the housing and electrical connections by using the anti-corrosion spray. Now you need to disconnect the steering link arm from the motor. Take the steering cable off the motor and extend it. Clean the tube and drain it for a while to get all the water out. Use the anti-corrosion spray on the tube. Now you can either grease and reinstall the tube or choose to hang it up in a safe place for the winter. However, if you have hydraulic steering in your boat you can skip over this step. The sixth step involves disconnecting and removing the battery or batteries. It is best to keep them inside the boat with a trickle charger at least a few days a month. Spray anti-corrosion treatment on the battery. After you have finished all the necessary steps you can tilt you motor down into a running position and cover it for storage. However, don't use plastic since this can trap moisture inside and ruin your engine. Rather you should use a cover made from canvas or cloth. Following this few steps can help you preserve your boat and avoid costly repairs.
 
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