What happens when the weather cools down? You clean up your boat, store it, and call it a season, right? Well, not always. For some people, boating in cold weather is not only an option, but it can be a great way to continue to enjoy the outdoors. But, as a responsible boat owner, you’ll still want to take care of your boat during wintery conditions. Here are some tips for boating in cold weather:
Know What to Do When Exposed to Cold Water
One of the chief risks of boating in cold weather is your body being exposed to the water. Water creates a far more efficient transfer of heat than the open air, which in turn means that your risk of hypothermia increases exponentially. Here are some vital facts you’ll need to know if you’re exposed to cold water:
- Always wear a life jacket. The shock of hitting the cold can affect your muscles, your dexterity, and your ability to swim. Keeping your life jacket on makes it easier for you to stay afloat while others rescue you. A whistle is another handy object in cold weather environments when you need to get someone’s attention, but don’t have the ability to shout for help.
- When out of the water, limit movements. If you’ve been rescued from the water, limit your movements as much as possible. Jarring movements while exposed to hypothermia could trigger cardiac arrest.
- Dress for the weather. That means synthetic materials that can wick away water, not just heavy layers designed to keep in warm air.
- Prep a cold weather first aid kit. Don’t forget to keep blankets (which help someone warm their body at a slower, healthier rate) handy.
Prepare your Boat for Cold Weather
Once you have the general rules of safety ready to go, it’s time to think about your boat. Here are some great ways to keep your boat in top condition during cold weather:
- Check your batteries. Just as you’d work to keep your car batteries well taken care of during the winter, your boat batteries are one of the most important items to maintain. Make sure they’re charged and that you minimize your use of electronics sourced from this battery while out on the water.
- Plan ahead. What’s the weather report? Keep a radio (with independent power that doesn’t drain the battery) for your NOAA reports so you’ll know if the weather is about to turn on you.
Prepare with BoatLIFE Products
Are you looking for more tips for boating in cold weather? We recommend that you browse the boat cleaning and sealing solutions available here at BoatLIFE. These products will ensure that your craft is in top condition not matter the weather conditions. Shop today and get your boat prepared to hit the water!