Whether it’s a big fishing boat meant for the open ocean, a yacht or just a simple fishing boat with a small outboard motor for inland trips, your boat is an investment. It’s in your best interests to maintain that investment. Depending on the model and level of preservation, some boats even wind up appreciating on a collector’s market over time. If you’re trying to get the most out of your vessel, hull preservation is vital.
As you set up maintenance processes for a new boat, consider these three tips for minimizing wear and tear to your hull. It’s one of the best ways to preserve a boat’s value.
1. Keep It Out of the Water
Plenty of people buy boats with the intention of docking them for the season, but leaving the boat in water when it’s not being used means giving the water and anything in it a chance to work on the hull. In freshwater, that can mean mussels and sometimes damage from acidic or alkaline water. In the ocean, it means continuous attrition from saltwater and sometimes barnacles or other parasites.
To balance the convenience of a boat that’s always docked and ready against the risk of possible water damage, look for a contractor installing boat lifts South Florida. Lifts give you an easy mechanism for raising a vessel out of the water to store or clean while keeping it in place and ready to be lowered quickly for a trip out.
2. Clean It Regularly
Once you have a boat lift installed, cleaning and damage remediation are both much easier to accomplish. After all, the boat is already up and out of the water between uses. You may as well take care of any grime or residue that’s lingering on the hull while spraying off new passengers before they really take hold. A freshwater hose and 10 minutes after each trip can do wonders for your hull, and a full cleaning with an all natural green cleaning product every couple weeks will do even more.
3. Address Osmosis Immediately
The gel coat over your hull is the first line of defense you’ve got against damage from water, salt, and more. When osmosis sets in, it’s no longer doing the work you depend on it to do, so you need to take care of things quickly. There are options to repair light damage without stripping the gel coat and applying a new one, but they are for light to moderate osmosis damage.
If osmosis progresses and becomes extensive before it is detected, then the expensive investment in a gel coat strip and reseal is essential. Like rust on a car body, unaddressed osmosis slowly makes your boat unusable. Luckily, just like rust, it’s easy to control if you get to it right away.