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Spring Boat Launch Checklist

During the spring you will begin to take your boat out of winter storage and prepare for your first launch of the season.  This annual preparation includes cleaning and inspecting your boat for any damages that might prevent it from running smoothly in the following months. 

There are certain steps every boater should take in preparation for boating season, either independently or in consultation with a qualified marine expert.  The guidelines below can serve as a reference as you learn how to properly recommission your boat as well as prepare for routine spring boat maintenance. 

Spring Boat Prep and Pre-Launch Checklist

Engine and Fuel System
  • Replace engine and transmission cooler zincs
  • Inspect engine mounts
  • Replace engine heater plugs
  • Replace engine air filter
  • Check the oil cooler for leaks
  • Check level of the oil reservoir
  • Commission engine at dock; check fluids, cooling and oil pressure
  • Soap and scrub bilges and engine pan and replace oil absorbent pads.
Belts, Cables, and Hoses
  • Inspect hoses and clamps for leaks and corrosion
  • Inspect exhaust elbows
  • Replace engine belts
  • Inspect the boat's steering controls & linkage. Lubricate and adjust as necessary.
  • Inspect wear ring & impeller
Electric System
  • Examine all electrical connections on the boat's motor
  • Before launch, clean all connections, hook up all terminals
  • Apply anti-corrosive product to all connections
  • Test & charge batteries as needed
  • Test all mechanical systems for proper operation
  • Check that all electronics function
Propellers and Hulls
  • Replace raw water pump impellers and gasket
  • Inspect & clean raw water strainers
  • Service hull sea cocks by removing barnacles and growths, lubricating the sea cocks and confirming proper operation
  • Examine the condition of shaft and boots
  • Clean propeller of growth or barnacles and check for damage to blades
  • Install new zinc
Water System
  • Replace holding tank filter
  • Commission fresh water system and fill water tank
  • Test all water systems and remove all non-toxic antifreeze: to include head, shower sump, deck faucet and all spigots in head and galley.
Exterior
  • Prep and paint lower unit as needed
  • Clean and paint strainers
  • Prep and paint bottom
  • Clean swim platform, boarding ladder and boarding step
  • Re-install exterior cushions and canvas
Safety
  • Adjust windshield wipers & replace blades
  • Inspect & certify fire extinguishers
  • Make sure that you have adequate amount of lifejackets onboard
Insurance
  • Ensure that your insurance policy is up-to-date and you have proof of insurance in a safe place on the boat.