How to Prepare for Long-Term Boat Storage

10/24/2022 How To

Long-Term Boat Storage

Long-term boat storage can be hard on your boat. In any case, it’s sensitive to both hot and cold weather. You can’t just pull the boat out of the water and store it inside a storage facility like parking a car.

With the boating season coming to an end, it’s time to start planning and preparing for winter storage. What are some of the best ways to keep your boat safe during the off-season?

Indoor boat storage isn’t the same as parking your car in the garage. Your boat will be stored for a lengthy time. Check and prepare both internal and external areas to decrease the risk of damage. It may be tedious, but it’s worth it.

Here at Handy Storage, we have secure, affordable storage for your boats, RVs, and other vehicles. We are always happy to answer all of your storage questions.

If you’re wondering how to prepare your boat for storage, we have a few tips. Before we proceed, let’s first look at what you need to consider when searching for a self storage facility for your boat.

Long Term Boat Storage

What to Look For in a Boat Storage Facility

Be sure to locate a self storage facility with updated security. It must have security cameras, perimeter fencing, secure locks, and other security measures to keep your boat safe, especially if you’ll be keeping it in open storage.

Don’t overlook insurance coverage. Does your chosen storage facility offer insurance for boats that are kept in all types of storage? Insurance will protect you from losses in case your boat is damaged or stolen. Don’t forget to ask about a tenant protection plan.

Facility Cleanliness
A well-maintained storage unit decreases the chance of damage to your stored boat. If you’re using enclosed storage, ensure every corner of your unit is well-cleaned and thoroughly dried.

Climate-Controlled Storage
Your boat is sensitive to both hot and cold temperatures. If you’re using enclosed storage, be sure that your facility offers climate-controlled storage. It might cost a bit more, but it’s worth protecting your investment.

Long-Term Boat Storage: Preparations

Inspect and Clean Your Boat
Inspect both your boat’s interior and exterior area for any grime or dirt. You should also check for parts that need to be replaced or repaired. Look out for the following:

  • Dents or cracks on the boat’s fiberglass or gel coat
  • Signs of wear
  • Corrosions on cleats and hooks
  • Oil leaks
  • Tears on ropes and wires

You can repair some of these areas yourself, or hire someone to do it for you. For cracks and dents, you can use marine-grade epoxy resin filler and coat it with a high-bond primer. Oil leaks need to be cleaned prior to storing your boat.

Cleaning the exterior of your boat is easy. Hot soapy water will clean away dirt, grime, and even grease.

Properly Secure and Remove Your Batteries
To protect against the battery losing its charge, remove it prior to storage. You can take the battery home or to an auto shop to be sure that its charge is maintained. It’s important that you can easily start your boat when you’re ready to use it in the spring.

Additionally, be sure the terminals are clean. If there is any corrosion or rust, your battery won’t hold a charge. Check the terminals before and after storage.

Remove Any Chances for Moisture
Like any other item stored inside a storage unit, moisture is the biggest threat. Protect against it by opening all compartments after cleaning your boat. This will allow it to air dry properly before storage. Use a dry cloth to absorb trapped water.

Invest in Quality Covers and Tie-Downs
You should cover your boat whether you’re storing it in an open or an enclosed, climate-controlled unit. This will keep it free of dust and dirt. Check 10 Best Boat Covers for some good information.

If you’re using open storage, purchase a cover that is specifically designed to resist water and protect the boat from sun damage. Your cover should fit snugly and cover the entire boat.

Use tie-downs to keep the cover securely attached to the boat.

Long-Term Storage for Your Boat

In addition to the above tips, you should also consider pest control, corrosion protection, and lubrication.

Preparing your boat for long-term storage may be tedious; however, checking and maintaining your boat will ensure that it is ready for next year’s boat season.

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