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Winterizing your Skeeter

By Craig Lamb

Winterizing the boat is an all-too-familiar autumn ritual for northern boaters. Those anglers put the boat to bed for winter and go hunting, ice fishing, or enjoy snow sports.

Winterizing your Skeeter

What about anglers living in warmer climates? Is it worth spending the time and money on a boat that won’t be used until next spring? Those are questions faced by even hardcore anglers choosing to run a Skeeter Boat.

The answer: you bet it is, and here are the reasons why. Maintenance is a must to prevent damage to the boat and engine. All it takes is an unexpected hard freeze or short cold snap to damage mechanical parts, electrical systems, and even the hull and trailer.

Before you get started, now is also the time to have the outboard winterized, unless you are a do-it-yourself expert. Schedule any maintenance with your local authorized Skeeter dealer to avoid trouble come to the spring thaw. 

After tournament season ends, to give the hull a good cleaning, avoid causing more harm than good when cleaning the thin layer of gel coat. Bleach products are a big no-no, and so are solvents with acetone and toluene. Save those products for other less sensitive cleaning chores.   

Winterizing your Skeeter

Better choices are cleaners with chelating agents that clean on a molecular level and bring out dirt as you rinse. For most boats you can spend about two hours, applying a gel coat friendly product like Yamalube® Pro Wash Spray  It’s a biodegradable spray that’s effective in removing grime, soil, grease and bugs from the hull’s surface.  The concentrated gallon form can be mixed in a bucket or used in a pressure washer.   Frequency varies depending on how often you go boating.

With the gel coat all shiny and looking like new it’s a good idea to apply a protective wax coating. Over time the plasticizers responsible for the shine leach out, leaving a dull appearance. Slow it down with carnauba, which is the hardest natural wax. Don’t go all the way with 100 percent carnauba because it would be too tough to apply. Yamalube Glare® Polish is a state of the art hi-tech, an ultra high-gloss sealant with Glassplexin® that blocks harmful UV (UVA/UVB) sun rays and provides superior surface protection. A good choice and best to follow the product’s label for application.

Winter air can shift between humid and dry, and both conditions can bring grief to upholstery. Another unwelcome invader is mold and mildew, which can form over the winter when surfaces remain moist. The preventative measure is venting your boat cover for good airflow to minimize the retention of moisture. Mildew sprays and chemical dehumidifiers are your best friend to keep mold and mildew out.

Moisture can also corrode electronics and other related devices. Remove those expensive and valuable electronics and store inside. Then, spray all exposed electrical connections with a moisture-displacing lubricant.

If your boat has a head, it needs TLC, too. When pumping the toilet a telltale sign of trouble is back-pressure in the line. If you feel it during operation, then stop the pump and get to work. Even better, head off the problem by cleaning the vent’s screen with a toothbrush at least once a season.

Winterizing your Skeeter

Save disinfectant sprays, bleaches, or any petroleum products for the home. Those products can destroy rubber parts like hoses. Instead, spend a few minutes each week flushing the system with distilled white vinegar. Mix one cup to a gallon of fresh water.

Finally, be sure to store the boat with the batteries fully charged. Have the batteries load tested to make sure they are ready to come spring, and keep them charged monthly if possible. Even better, remove the batteries and store indoors if you plan to store the boat outside.

Following these simple tips will ensure that next spring when tournament time finally arrives, you will be ready to compete.

Visit Skeeter Boats.com today.

This document contains many of Skeeter’s valuable trademarks. It may also contain trademarks belonging to other companies. Any references to other companies or their products are for identification purposes only and are not intended to be an endorsement.

Original Source: Sportsmans Lifestyle.com

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