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Bryan  Hughes

Don't Sink Your Boat on Dry Land

By November 30, 2012

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I will never forget my first boat. It was a 1988 Supra TS6M competition ski boat. It was red and white, had over 900 hours on it, no back seat, and there was a certain kind of charm in the quirky instrument panel. In fact I don't think we ever really knew how fast we were going since the speedometer would float between 17 and 25 mph with every small bump in the water.

Needless to say, the boat wasn't much to look at. Still, it had tons of heart and ran like a top -- that is, until we failed to pull the plugs one winter, and flooded it on dry land. It was a hard lesson to learn, but it also made us take proper winterizing steps very seriously with the next boat.

Thankfully, you don't have to learn the hard way. So if you have a brand new boat, then make sure you take the necessary steps to keep your boat maintained and stored properly.

But I am curious -- do any of you out there have a boat horror story to tell? Please share with the class in the comments so we can all learn from it.


November 30, 2012 at 2:03 pm
(1) Norris Lake Junkie says:

A couples years after buying my first boat (a 1984, 19 foot, Bayliner bowrider) we had an unusually warm winter…..the blue tarp help keep water out but as I found out it also kept water in. The worst thing you can do is not permit your boat to breath. I also didn’t fog the engine. In spring I had mold all over the interior and two cracked heads. Very expensive screw up. My wife wanted to KILL me.

November 30, 2012 at 2:08 pm
(2) Steve says:

I don’t winterize. Instead, I put a drop light under the motor on a timer. It keeps my motor warm enough to not freeze but it’s not hot enough to ignite any gas fumes. Since the timer is on the house there is no spark when the light turns on and off. ‘Been doing this for years and it works great. Drop lights at the big home improvement stores are under $10.

Boats really fill up with a lot of water when it rains, even with a cover, so I leave the plug out. I made it so the removeable plug fits on the key ring so I have to physically handle the plug to start the boat. My neighbor forgot once – but we alll have one of those stories.

Once again, don’t forget to remove the plug. One year I opened the motor cover to find my drop light “on” but under about 6″ of water. That was scary since I was standing in the wet boat when i saw it.

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