Utah State Parks Blog

Top 10 Tips: Getting Your Boat Ready For Summer

Most Utah boats have been unused for 3-4 months, and spring is upon us, so here are our Top 10 pieces of advice for making sure your boat is summer-ready!


Ensure your boat is ready for the summer!

If you are not mechanically inclined, or if you are unfamiliar of your boats mechanical standards, there is time to schedule a tune-up with a certified marine technician.

  1. Get a tune up

To ensure your engine is performing to its optimum this will save you in the long run in fuel economy and a frustrating break down on the lake or reservoir.

  1. Water pump and thermostat

Check the impellers for wear and cracking; also, you should make sure your thermostat is in good working order.  Both of these will ensure proper cooling and prevent any unwanted damage.

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    Check your fluids and filters


Check your oil levels. For 2-=cycle engines make sure there is 2 cycle oil either premixed in the fuel tank or in the oil tank. If you are driving a 4-cycle engine, make sure there is a proper amount of oil in the crankcase for proper lubrication.  Also, be sure to check the power trim and lower end oil levels.

  1. Filters

Replace your fuel filter every 100 hours or annually – whichever comes first.  It is recommended to use a 10 micron fuel/water separating filter to catch debris or water from reaching the engine.  Try not to purchase gas with ethanol. Hoever, sometimes it’s your only option; if so, make sure it contains no more than 10-percent ethanol.

  1. Battery

Check your battery and its water levels if it is a wet cell battery.  It is recommended to us a battery tender to maintain its charge and extend its lifetime.

  1. Always be sure to check your battery.

    Always be sure to check your battery.

    Inspect the anodes

Sacrificial anodes, are mounted near metal parts found at the bottom of your boat or outdrives.  They absorb damaging electrical current in the water, thus protecting your drives form electrolysis.  If your anodes are corroded, you need to replace them immediately.

  1. Check bilge pump

Check your bilge circuit, pump and automatic switch.  The bilge pump float switch senses a rise of water level in the bilge and will signal the pump to turn on.  If the switch fails to operate, your boat can flood, you can drain the battery, or even preeminently damage your pump.

  1. Manifolds and risers (sterndrive or inboard/outboard engines)

These two parts of the exhaust system get very hot, and will only last about 6-7 years.  It is important to have a skilled mechanic perform a visual inspection in the spring to make sure there is not deterioration.

  1. Taking a trailer? Be sure to inspect it before loading any weight.

    Taking a trailer? Be sure to inspect it before loading any weight.

    Bellows (sterndrive or inboard/outboard engines)

Bellows, the pleated, rubber membranes on a sterndrive engine, connect the inboard engine and the outdrive unit.  Should they dry rot, you boat can take on water and even sink.

  1. Trailers

Ensure that the wheel bearings are properly greased, and tires are not rotted and are in good shape, and the brake system are working.  Also check your trailer lights for proper operation.

And there you have it; our Top 10 tips on things to check to ensure your boat is summer ready.

If you’re wondering how about decontaminating your boat between trips, visit STD of the SEA to learn more about how to prevent contamination and keeping our waters and boats safe!

Once all of this is done don’t forget to check your boat for the required safety equipment you need to carry while boating in Utah.

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