Thursday, 14 February 2019

10 boat checks to do BEFORE heading out on the water

1. Check all fuel hoses and connections for any fuel leaks, cracks and brittle areas.  Replace fuel filter.

2. Check battery condition, recharge or replace if its not holding charge.  Check the battery terminal connections and clean with a wire brush.

3. Check and replace water pump impeller.

4. Change engine oil, oil filter and gear box oil.

5. Check control cables are working, check the outer jacket for cracks or swells which may indicate a problem.

6. Ensure drain plug has been fitted.

7. Check propeller condition and that it is secured properly.

8. Check all the safety gear.  Check that all life jackets are in good working order and the fire extinguishers are all fully charged.

9. Check the bilge pumps are working correctly.

10. Check engine starts and all is running ok before launching.

A few more useful tips:

If you have a VHF Radio on board your boat it would worthwhile doing a radio check by contacting the Solent Coast Guard.  Use Channel 67 and say: “Solent Coastguard, Solent Coastguard, Solent Coastguard. This is [your boat name, your boat name, your boat name]. Radio Check. Over.”

Another important check is your boat trailer. Always check the wheel bearings and any other moving parts for signs of corrosion.  You don’t want to be stuck on the side of the motorway with your family and a broken trailer!