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Groloe

Winterizing

31 posts in this topic

I'm wanting to winterize my boat myself for the first time this year. I've read a few things and talked to a few people, so have a good start to knowing what needs to be done. The one thing I've figured out is that everyone seems to agree on 75% of the tasks. With the other 25%, one guy will tell you it's a must, and the next will tell you not to waste your time. I'm hoping to draw from the years of experience on this forum and find out what needs to/should be done and what to look out for? Any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks- Groloe

Editors Note Click here to get the info you need to properly winterize your boat:

http://fishingminnesota.com/fishinfo4.html

[This message has been edited by Rick (edited 09-12-2002).]

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Hey Groloe- don't mind me but I would like to jump on the bandwagon and find out the same information. I assume you're refering to outboard motors(?) I change the lower-unit oil and that's it- I've never came across any issues with that, but, like you, I've heard about other things that (should) be done.

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If you fellas want to winterize your own rigs its really very simple. If you do not do anything else at least do these 3 things. First stabilize the fuel, this keeps it fresh and ready for next season. I usually put the stabilizer in will I am still using the boat this helps remove any moisture that is in the fuel tank, and insure that it gets in the carbs. Next change the lower unit gear oil, this allows you to remove and or notice any water that has gotten into it. This will prevent any water from freezing and possibly cracking the lower unit, plus it will be ready to go in the spring. Then fog the engine, some eng. have a valve to hook a can of fogging oil to, just like a tire valve stem. Start the eng (hooked up to water) disconnect the fuel line and just as the engine starts to sputter from lack of fuel let the fogging oil rip until the eng dies it only needs to go for a few seconds to coat all the internal stuff.If you don't have the valve just spray it down the throats of the carbs. It can also be sprayed in thru the plug holes but thru the intake is better. Now the eng is ready for hibernation. Batterys should also be taken out so they will not discharge and freeze. You should also lube all the grease fittings to prevent corrosion, drain the bilges, and clean the boat. If all these things are done then the boat will be ready to go in the spring. Also if the boat is to be left outside over the winter the best thing to do is have it shrinkwrapped, it will shed virtually any amount of snow and it will stay clean and dry and avoid any snow damage.

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Here's what I do.......

(1) put fuel stabilizer in fuel and run it
through motor.

(2) Drain/refill lower end.

(3) Pull spark plugs and squirt some
fogging oil into each cylinder
while bumping motor over.
(replace plugs after starting/running
awhile in spring)

(4) Bring in batteries/ensure charge
store in basement(on plywood mats)

(5) Throw in box of DECON mice/rat killer
in boat


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the guys have good advice. follow it and you will be all set for spring. the only thing i do different is i spray a decarbonizer into the intake with the motor runing, before fogging. i have a 175 and it loads up if i idle to much.( i have to around my area.) also if you have a elec trolling motor; take the prop off it to check for any fishing line or gunk that may have gotten wrapped around it. del

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Delmuts, has good point that I should have mentioned. Pull the prop off of your O/B also and check for fish line, if left unchecked it can lead to substantial damage to the lower unit. I just checked mine on sunday while waiting for a buddy to arrive at the ramp, so I guess it slipped my mind!

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The owners manual for my Motorguide trolling motor states NOT to leave the motor out in below frezing weather, it will cause the plastic housing to crack and is bad for the circut boards, and if it gets really cold like around here the magnets in the motor could crack. I always take my trolling motor off and store in the basement over the winter.

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I have a question about fogging your motor. Over the last 15 years or so, I have never fogged my engine before storage. When I bought my latest rig 3 years ago, I started fogging the motor. Now each spring my motor runs terrible until I am able to run a few fresh tanks of gas and some Seafoam through it(and I do stabilize my gas). Does anyone else have this problem? I will most likely not try it again. I've never had any problems not fogging the engine.

------------------
Tonka Boy

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Tonka boy About 3 years ago you wernt burning corn gas and it didnt break down like the new oxygenated gas does. 30 days and its old. Use the premium pump with unoxygenated gas. Add a fuel stabilizer when you store gas.
If your not going to any of the above then at least drain the carbs and fog the engine. the fogging is going to coat the cylinder walls and bearing. It only takes 1 speck of rust on the bearings to puke a motor out in 2 hours of use next spring. Also dirty carbs not only makes your engine run like crap they make an engine run lean. In time it will cook your engine. Storage prep has been covered here before but needs repeating.
Fall is a good time to clean a repack trailer bearings too and since you have the trailer blocked up bring the tires in the house.
One of these mouse traps that spins and holds about 50 mice would be a good idea too. I had one livin in my boat last winter and thank God all it shreaded up was the roll of toilet paper my wife left in the boat.

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I have just one thing to throw in......

I put mothballs in dixie cups at strategic places around the boat before double tarping the boat for winter. In the splash well, down near the plug hole, in corners, in storage areas. Mice, coons and other animals do not like the smell of mothballs (much like myself!) and will not stay in an area where they are present.

Another thing is to make sure that you leave nothing dangling from the boat or trailer. Rope, tarp straps, even trailer wires. Mice love to climb up things and have no problem using them as a means of entrance and exit.

In the spring, your boat will be rather aromatic, but after a couple of trips out, the odor is gone. Be sure you don't keep any tackle in the boat over winter, as I assume that would carry the mothball smell for a while, too.

Hey.....does all this talk mean that I need to put the boat away for the year? frown.gif

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I have fogged since my motor was new. Never had any problem in the spring. Starts and runs just fine; even though I always forget to treat the fuel tank.

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I also heard to make sure your nice metal gas cans are full all of the way so that they can't rust from the inside in case there is any condensation. We had one that rusted up and plugged up the fuel filter about midway through opening weekend. Lots of fun when you are out on Basswood.

Plastic or aluminum shouldn't seem to matter I would guess.

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You should have your tanks top off to prevent condinsation from building up in the tank.

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Yes drain the engine block. In your owners manual it will show all the drin plugs. They should be brass and 3/8", some may be a petcock that looks like your radiator drain. Dont miss any of them. When your done put the plugs back and fill the block with anti freeze. Take a hose off the plenium(sp) to do so. Its recommended to pull the lower unit off and greese the shaft with splines on it. Store the out drive in the down position so the bellows dosent obtain memory.
Put a new water /fuel separator in.
Do this and the posts mentioned earlier on this tread. If its to much for ya you can have it done at most marine dealers

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Fill your gas tank, add a can of sea foam motor tune up/gas treatment.

Run motor til the fresh treated gas has made it to the carbs. (with water muffs or in the lake of course)

Fog the motor. This prevents any corrosion and rust on the rings and cylinder walls, causing premature wear on the motor upon starting in the spring.

Change the lower gear lube.

Wait til spring to change the spark plugs.

In the spring, the fogging oil is guilty of fouling the spark plugs. Run the motor for a few minutes to burn off the oil on the old plugs, and then replace them.

PCG

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Hey guys, I agree with everything you are doing, but what do you do for your livewells? I run an older Lund 1775 ProVee, [1992] and I fill the livewell lines with RV winterizing fluid. I don't know about you, but,I do not like taking my boat apart to repair water lines.

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Another tip winterizing an IO is to run a wire into each drain hole. That will loosen any Sand, gravel or silt that has been sucked into the block and water jackets. Also if you have a V6 or V8 be sure to pull the hoses off the water jackets.
IO's are a hassle to winterize, thats why I went back to an outboard.

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Thanks guys! I will give list to hubby. He just loves it when I come up with something I have learned on here and show him how to do it. rolleyes.gif But, he was impressed when I hooked up the trolling motor batteries myself - of course I did not show him the list of directions I had on how to connect the two batteries that I got from you guys.

------------------
Phyl

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If I store my boat outside will shrinkwrapping it keep the critters out? Last year I tarped it over my canvas cover and still ended up with a weasel in it. I went to take the anchor out of the bow compartment and pretty much had to clean out my shorts after the thing jumped by my face. Boy did it make a mess. Luckily it was a bachelor.

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It is a very good idea to use these things.

The difference is Sea Foam has some agents that help remove carbon, and other deposits that may clog ports injectors, and such...

For winterizing, either product is a good idea to prevent gelling and varnishing.

PCG

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Do you need to use Sea Foam and Sta-Bil for winterizing outboards? What is the difference?

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What is the difference between Sea Foam and Sta-Bil? Can I use both?

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