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How to Winterize Your Boat Before Using Self-Storage

Simple steps to winterize your boat for self-storage

Simple steps to winterize your boat for self-storage

While using self-storage will protect your boat for the harsh winter months, you still need to take certain steps to protect it. This is usually called winterization.

It’s typically a good idea to let a professional handle this. Or your self-storage provider may be able to do it for you, or at lease refer you to someone who can.

But if you’re looking to save a bit of money, here is what you will need to do, according to’s Ericka Watson.

Change the Engine and Drive Train Oil
“Use a manual or electric oil changing system to make draining the oil easier, then add new oil according to the manufacturer’s specifications. Run the engine to circulate the oil through the system. At the same time you change the oil, be sure to change the oil filter. Change the oil in transmission or the outboard’s lower unit as well.”

Add Antifreeze to an Inboard Cooling Systems
Inboards: “Before adding antifreeze, start the engines to warm them up. After the engines are warm, close the seacock and open the strainer to flush the water. Finally, add the antifreeze.”

Outboards: “Purchase a winterizing kit from your local marine supply store that contains a bucket, hose and fittings.”

Fog the Engine Cylinders
“Consult the engine’s manual, a mechanic or the manufacturer to find out which method to use for your engine.”

Treat the Fuel System
“One method is to empty the fuel tank completely, which is extremely difficult. The second method, generally preferred by boaters, is to empty the fuel tank as much as possible and then refill it to leave as little room as possible. Once the tank is full, treat the fuel with a biocide (for diesels) or a stabilizer (for all engines).”

Care for the Batteries
“If your boat is small enough, simply disconnect the batteries and bring them home, add distilled water and charge them occasionally. For larger boats, disconnect the batteries, add distilled water and then periodically reconnect and charge them using shore power.”

You spend so much money on your boat. It would be a shame to damage it over the winter while you’re not using it.

If you have any questions about storing your boat in self-storage in in Brampton, North York, Toronto, and Etobicoke, please contact us any time.

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