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Help getting the boat ready!!

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Ok!! ok!! Smack me upside the head already!!

Last fall I didn't do anything to get my boat ready for winter. It was my first fall having a boat - and between buying/closing on my house and moving in, I didn't do anything. In fact, it didn't even make it into the garage before Jan.

So now I need to know what to do to get it ready for this year. Its a 14ft '60 aluminum Crestliner with a '63 18hp Johnson.

Can someone tell me what I need to do? or tell me where there's a good guide?



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Ones that I can quickly remember

Check the water level in the batteries and charge them.

Check the bilge and live well pumps

Drain and refill outboard lower unit

Remove propeller and inspect for fishing line etc.

Pull spark plugs and inspect

Inspect trailer tires and bearings

Inspect wicnh cable/strap

Check oil reservoir

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Patti, for your motor you may want to consider taking it to a small engine repair guy or outboard repair guy if you don't want to tackle it yourself. First thing I would do is drain and refill the lower unit lube, should only use about 1/2 a tube worth or so. Then you will need to remove the motor cover and pull the spark plugs, when you pull them, spray some deep creep in the cylinders to clean up any carbon buildup. You don't need a lot, but it helps for sure. Go ahead and get a couple of new plugs, they are cheap and the easiest thing to replace. Check your fuel filter bowl for water or any buildup. Clean the gas lines that go to and from the fuel filter bowl. If this doesn't get you going, you will need to do a full carb clean which is the hard part. There are some tips on carb cleaning in another thread here a little lower.

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Check out this thread:

Summerizing for the "Normal" things to do to prepare your boat for open water.

Depending on what you find during those checks you may need to do additional things. My biggest concern would be that there was water in the gearcase, which froze and pushed the lower unit seals out.


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Thanks guys!!

And thanks for the concern Tom - I'm not completely on my own - my dad knows alot about engines but for someone who does - he doesn't do preventative maintenance too often.

Of course I've been there in his boat at the dock when it wouldn't start - so not relying on him 100% to tell me what needs to be done.

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