Boat Maintenance Checklist for Dummies – Top Care Tips

Whatever type of boat you have – from yachts to powerboats – you want to spend your time on board relaxing and enjoying yourself, so cleaning and boat maintenance can seem like an unnecessary chore. However, if you spend a little time carrying out our top boat care tips, then you can avoid spending large amounts of time and money fixing bigger problems caused by neglect.

Regular boat maintenance and cleaning, and using the best marine cleaning materials, will protect your investment, as well as allow you to enjoy life at sea. Here’s our tried and tested boat maintenance checklist for beginners.

Clean Little and Often

Inevitably, water and dirt will build up over time. It can get into small spaces, causing damage if it is left unchecked. The secret to successful cleaning is simply to use a whole lot of elbow grease. However, you will also find that a little of the right product can go a long way in helping you keep your boat clean. Try something like Gamazyme which you can use on both hard and soft surfaces.

Keep Bad Smells At Bay

Musty smells caused by mould and mildew are all too common in the damp environment of a boat, and they can really spoil your enjoyment. It’s not easy to keep your boat smelling sweet, as anything absorbent on board will take on water, but a little regular attention will work wonders. Make sure your cabin has adequate ventilation with something that will combat unpleasant smells like Evans Dri-Foam.

Keep the Rust Away

Again, this is a tricky one as any metal surface on your boat is susceptible to rust when in contact with water; this includes parts of your engine as well as every nut and bolt on board, which can potentially lead to serious problems if you don’t keep on top of it. The simplest way to combat rust and corrosion is to wipe down all your metal surfaces each time you use the boat. Flushing clean water through the engine will help to prevent any internal corrosion.

Keep Your Engine Running Smoothly

Unless you have the know-how and expertise to see to it yourself, a regular service is the best way to make sure your engine keeps running smoothly. There are also things you can do to prevent damage to your engine and keep potential problems away. Change the oil regularly and keep an eye on the propeller, checking to make sure it is not obstructed by debris and that the blades are not bent. Check out this range of shell marine products to keep your engine running smoothly.

Keep Your Hull Clean

Keeping your hull clean will keep your boat speeding through the water. Barnacles and other marine growth that become attached to your hull will slow you down and can cause damage. A little cleaning as often as possible will help to keep your hull clean and protect it from damage.

Keep Your Bilge Clean

If dirty water builds up in your bilge, it will cause bad smells and can cause damage to any equipment. Keep it clean to avoid any build-up of bacteria. If you find an unusual amount of water in the bilge, it may indicate a problem, so be sure to check this out. If your bilge water is contaminated with oil, make sure you dispose of it safely to avoid polluting the ocean.

Keep Your Boat Safe in Cold Weather

When preparing your boat for Winter, it’s worth taking steps to keep it clean over the colder months to come. Clean everything as thoroughly as possible and remove as much moisture from the air as you can. If you clean regularly throughout the winter, you can keep mildew and mould away.

If you take a little time to clean and maintain your boat, you can avoid serious problems further down the line. You will also be able to enjoy your downtime on a clean, sweetly smelling boat that runs smoothly and efficiently. Remember that ‘little and often’ works wonders for your vessel’s seaworthiness and your enjoyment of it.

If you need any marine supplies online, marine engine spares or advice in caring for your boat, contact us and we’ll be happy to help you find what you need.