If your like me and have your garage full of junk, then where do you put your boat when it’s not being used. You always want to make sure that it’s in a secure place and the best and cheapest place is your backyard. But, there is more to than just backing it in the yard and unhitching it.
The ideal way to store your boat from the standpoint of providing the best support for the hull, is in the water. The advantage of water cradling may be offset by the cost of securing the boat to a dock or in a slip. That way you don’t usually have to worry about damage from other boats or the elements of the weather.
Storing your boat at home offers the advantage of having it on hand where you can perform maintenance or add custumized features without having to drive to a boat dock.
Preventive maintenance should be performed regardless of your boat being stored ashore or in the water. the ravages of sun, rain , sleet and snow will make themselves apparent no matter where your boat is stored, if it’s left un-protected.
If you have a routine that you regularly follow, then repairs or more costly replacements can be kept to a minimum. The next time your at lake or river, look at the boats and trailers that are launching. Most boat owners fall to take advantage of the adjustable features built into their trailers. You may see distortions in the hull due to improper supported hulls. Most trailers provide adjustable rollers or bunk supports. It is better to be sure that these are properly adjusted to give your boat suitable cradling.
Tires, rot quicker if they are left in contact with the wet ground. If they are partially buried in mud or sitting in pools of water. It takes only a few minutes to jack up your trailer and stick some blocks underneath the trailer axle to keep the tires off the ground. I sometimes even take my tires off and store them inside, it may keep the theives from stealing your boat, too.
The wood in boats will deteriorate faster if water is allowed to collect and lay in the bilges. Raise and block the trailer tongue high enough so that any water that comes into the boat will drain to the rear where your plug hole is, never leave the plug in the boat while the boat is not in use.
Batteries, they are so expensive in this day and time. So you want to keep them in good shape. In the winter time, remove your batteries and store them in a dry place. I like to take my and and put them in my garage on a wood board. Never put a battery directly on concrete, It will ruin them. If your batteries are dirty, you can clean them with baking soda. Simply just sprinkle some baking soda on top of them and maybe scrub them a little and rinse off with clean water. It’s also a good idea to keep the batteries on a trickle charger or maintainer. You can pick one up at any parts store or Harbor Freight pretty cheap, expecially compared to the price of a new battery today.
Some people even remove their outboard motors and store them at a dealer or have the maintenance done during the winter months when they don’t plan on using them.
I hope I have shared a few backyard boating tips with you here and until I see you down the trail, next time.