Preparing Your Boat for Winter Lay-up

Click here to read about winterizing your boat

There are rumors that it will be an early winter this year.  Now for those  who like to cross country ski and snowshoe, that’s great news.  For avid boaters, though, it may mean a shorter boating season.

Properly preparing your boat for winter is very important.  It will definitely avoid costly repairs.  You may run the risk of having even a shorter boating season while your boat is being repaired due to improper winterization.

It’s also an excellent time to assess your safety equipment, taking note of things on the boat that needs fixing before next spring, completing those tasks over the winter.

Don’t leave it at the last minute!

Winterizing depends on the type of engine outboard, inboard or sterndrive.   Check your owner’s manual for both boat and motor for manufacturer’s recommendations for winterization.

Draining any water aboard or replacing it with enough of the right kind of antifreeze is key as water expansion from freezing damages the engine block, fiberglass, splits in hoses or destroys a refrigeration system

In addition, boat winter layup should be out of the water, under cover or in a climate controlled boat storage area.

Here is a link to a winterizing checklist.  You may want to add other items from the owner’s manual for your boat and the additional equipment it carries.  This helpful tool can serve as a starting point for creating you own winterizing list.

Winterizing Checklist Boat U.S.

Here are more sites with tips on developing your winterizing checklists and a checklist for the spring.

Discover Boating

Spring Start Up Check List

Your watercraft is an investment, one that requires consistent and proper maintenance and care so that your next boating season will be filled with great memories of boating on the beautiful waters of Ontario.


Winterizing your boat