During the winter while the boat is laid up is the perfect time to tend to routine boat maintenance. We will recommend most of these tasks when you bring your boat in for storage.
Clean bilges are important for several reasons.
Keeping strainers working properly will extend the life of other equipment and help prevent problems during cruising. We tackle both strainers as a matter of routine maintenance - the external scoop type stainers and the internal water strainers. Both are important and both need maintenance. For more on water strainers, see our strainers and seacocks page.
Maintaining scoop strainers requires them to be removed from the boat. Usually, they have barnacles in them which will need to be scraped off. The interior of the thruhull they are protecting needs to be inspected for growth inside and cleaned. The strainer is then sanded, painted and bedded back on the bottom. Allowing growth inside the strainers will limit the amount of water that is permitted to enter the seacock. This could cause overheating engines or electric pump failures.
When your boat is hauled, we give it a light power wash. This does not remove barnacles or heavy build up. Having clean props and shafts is critical to the performance of your boat. During layup we send the crew around to scrape and sand smooth the props and shafts. We will also inspect them for suspected damage and may recommend prop reconditioning if necessary. We also are firm believers in protective coatings.
Proper care of gel coat will not only make your boat look better, it will enhance the value of the vessel and make it easier to maintain. Polishing can not be done on faded or stained gel coat. Compounding will clean and replenish the surface - allowing the shine to emerge when the polish is applied. We have more about boat polishing in our service log.
There are proper steps to getting a good bottom job. The most important thing is to make sure the paint you are applying is compatible with what you already have on the boat. This is part of adequate record keeping. Always let the yard know what kind of paint you have. We have an article on bottom painting in our service log.
This subject demands a whole section since it is so important to the health of your vessel. See our engine maintenance section.
3831 Trappe Landing Road
Trappe, MD 21673