Boat maintenance is a time-consuming – but necessary – part of owning a boat. Doing the hard work of maintaining your boat allows you to do all the fun stuff, like taking your boat out on the lake. Because there are so many working parts to a boat, it can be difficult to keep track of everything that needs to be maintained. That is why keeping a boat maintenance checklist is so important. A checklist will serve as your “cheat sheet” for boat maintenance. Below, we have listed some key items that every boat maintenance checklist should have. For an actual sample of a detailed powerboat maintenance checklist, we recommend visiting the following webpage: https://www.larsenmarine.com/service/boat-maintenance-checklist/.
Checking and maintaining your boat’s safety equipment is an often neglected, but very important, task. For one, you want to keep track of when your boat’s fire extinguishers were last inspected. We also recommend keeping track of when the extinguishers were certified, and whether they need to be replaced. Speaking of fires, your checklist should also include a line for your boat’s fume detectors, especially if you own a gas-powered boat. Since your VHF Marine Radio can be a kind of lifeline for your boat, you need to test its frequency and keep track of repairs/replacements. Of course, you also need to maintain your boat’s actual lifelines. This includes adding a reminder to check the condition of the lifelines and tracking lifeline replacements.
This is another essential section of any powerboat maintenance checklist. There are two questions that you will need to be mindful of when devising an engine checklist:
- Does your engine reach its maximum rated RPM?
- Does your engine produce excessive exhaust smoke?
Other points that you will want to add to your engine checklist include compression tests (to evaluate the engine’s condition), cleaning/rebuilding the carburetor (for gas engines), engine tune-ups, fuel hoses, v-belts, water pumps, batteries, battery chargers, and engine instruments. When checking your boat’s engine instruments, you will want to record any defective gauges. Staying on top of these items will keep your boat running.
There are several other items on a boat that keep it running day-to-day. Many of these items are every bit as important as your boat’s engine, and your checklist should account for them. These items include:
- The bilge blower (check operation and hoses)
- The bilge pump
- The pressure water system (keep track of leak repair)
- The waste system (be sure to record any unpleasant odors)
- Hull seacocks
- Trim tabs
Tracking these items and others will ensure that your boat stays reliable. The link mentioned above has a more complete list of “reliability” items that you will need to track.
If Repairs Are Needed
Of course, the whole point of the checklist is so that you will know when it is time to have repairs or replacements made. If such services are needed, we recommend contacting Larsen Marine https://www.larsenmarine.com/service/. Larsen Marine’s five-star service center has been servicing boats in the Chicago area for years.