Labor Day was just last week and while the weather outside might not really feel like autumn, the holiday usually marks the end of summer. It’s the time of year where students start moving to college and folks like you try to squeeze in just one more barbeque. But, it also means that you’ve got to start thinking about winterizing your boat.
As a boat owner, you already know that you can’t wait until winter hits to store your boat – that’s something you need to prepare for in the fall. There are three main methods for storing your boat over the winter – the backyard, the boatyard, and indoors. Let’s take a look at all three.
The backyard option for storing your boat is usually the cheapest, but you have got to do it right. Otherwise, your boat could sustain damage through the colder months. If you decide to store your boat in the backyard, it is smart to invest in the right boat cover. Covers range in price from $100 to about $2,500. Experts usually recommend a high-end boat cover for the maximum protection. While the cover needs to protect your boat from moisture, a cover that doesn’t allow for proper ventilation can lead to mildew and mold. A good cover will probably last you around ten years.
If you decide that you’d prefer professional boat storage, the boatyard is always a good choice. You can have your boat shrink-wrapped to protect against moisture but also keeping it well ventilated. Boatyards specialize in caring for boats, so you know your baby will be in good hands. The only downside to the shrink-wrap is that you won’t be able to work on your boat over the winter, unless you want to pay for it to be re-wrapped.
Believe it or not, there are tons of choices when it comes to indoor boat storage. There are heated and unheated options, climate-controlled or not. The biggest draw to indoor storage for many boat owners is that the boat will be protected from the elements plus having access to it throughout the winter months. However, storing your boat at a full-service storage facility can be expensive and limit the time of day you can access your boat – you might actually need to make an appointment.
Regardless of how you choose to store your boat this winter, it is time to start thinking about it now. The summer is practically over and before you know it, the holidays will be here! So, think over the different options, consider what you did last year, and get started! Remember, your boat isn’t just your baby it’s an investment. Do your best to protect it.