A FEW BOAT WINTERIZATION OPTIONS COULD SAVE THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS
It’s that time of year – days are getting shorter, and nights a little bit colder. If you’re a first-time boat owner, or are a boat owner who has moved to a colder climate, the ins and outs of winterization can be confusing and a few boat winterization options could save you thousands of dollars.
Some owners say boat winterizing is a sham, while others swear by it. But, unless you’re in a climate that allows year-round boating, consider the following facts:
- Insurance companies view a cracked engine block due to freezing as improper maintenance, and will not cover the claim. Read the fine print in your policy to determine your coverage.
- California is the state with the most cases of freeze-related boat damage, according to insurance statistics. Boat owners in warmer states typically don’t think about winterizing their boats until an unusual cold spell when it is too late to act.
- Don’t forget the galley, head and waste system – any system involving liquids can be susceptible to winter damage in freezing conditions.
- Boats with a low freeboard wintered in water can easily sink with even a small amount of ice or snow build up. Even blowing snow can accumulate on your boat adding weight to your boat, thereby sinking it.
- Open thru-hulls near the waterline can lead to sinking if there’s enough snow or ice accumulation. The extra weight pushes the boat down until the above becomes a below waterline thru-hull.
- If you’re the do-it-yourself type, the cost savings of a few tools, supplies, and time will far outweigh the cost of a new motor block. If you don’t have the time, or don’t feel comfortable undertaking the task, schedule the winterization with your preferred mechanic or boat dealer.
- If you really want to protect your investment, you can add Ice and Freeze Coverage to your boat’s insurance policy but act fast because these policies are not offered after October when winter season starts.
Below are some additional articles and resources:
Boating World Magazine
Six Most Common Winterizing Mistakes
Coast Guard Compass
Boat U.S Freeze Coverage
Boaters Guide to Winterizing