Pop quiz: when are you finished with maintenance on your sailboat? It’s a trick question. The real answer is “never,” because a sailboat needs regular care and attention if it’s going to perform at its best. And that care and attention won’t help if it isn’t comprehensive. That’s why we’ve put together this ultimate sailboat maintenance checklist to help keep your ship in top condition:
- Inspect the boat. Survey the bilge, for example. Test the bilge pump and make sure it runs smoothly. Visually inspect the hull. Look for leaks. Check the raw water sea strainers and look at your battery levels on a regular basis. The key word here is “comprehensive.” Remember, without a comprehensive inspection, you won’t know which issues need addressing.
- Inspect your anchorage. Keeping an anchor in proper condition is essential. You don’t want to head out on a journey and find out that your anchor is suddenly flawed. Some experts recommend waiting for clear waters and weather and diving down to check the anchor itself.
- When in doubt, get a second opinion. If you’re not sure about the quality of a particular system, you should bring in an extra pair of eyes—preferably an expert’s pair of eyes. It’s better to know that your sailboat doesn’t have a problem than to wonder.
- Write down your regular maintenance habits. Add a date next to your notes so you know what needs to be done first. You’d be amazed at how much time can pass since you inspect a critical system if you don’t track it. By tracking it, you’ll know which spots on your sailboat deserve the most attention next time around.
- Look at the quality of your sailboat’s wood. A sailboat’s wood is comparable to its lifeblood. You don’t want dry rot to set in and completely change its quality. We recommend a range of Wood Restorers that can help you out here if a total replacement is not needed. Our Git-Rot Kit is particularly helpful. It uses capillary action to penetrate through wood rot and strengthen the wood to make it both sandable and paintable.
- Keep it clean! If there’s one thing inexperienced boat owners often forget, it’s that keeping a clean boat can work wonders. Keeping your sailboat clean will help prevent mildew from developing, which in turn ensures that you don’t end up with a lot of strange odors that become hard to eradicate. We have a full range of Boat Cleaning Products here at BoatLIFE for you to peruse.
- Address maintenance issues as soon as they arise. Don’t put a new issue, such as a strange noise, on the back-burner. You don’t want to find out about a new problem when you’re out on the water. You want to know everything there is to know when you’re safe at home.
Stock Up On Boat Maintenance Products
There is a lot you can do to maintain a high-quality, sea-worthy sailboat—and you’ve read a lot of it here. Make sure to expand your boat maintenance toolkit with our boating products here at BoatLIFE.