Owning a boat will change your life in many ways. You’ll not only spend many unforgettable days on the water, but you’ll learn new skills, make friends, and enjoy a better quality of life.
However, before rushing into buying a vessel, you must gain an in-depth understanding of your requirements as a boat owner. Read the below five steps to take after buying a boat.
Step One: Register Your Boat
If you plan to use your boat or keep it on a river or canal, you must register it. It is essential for most types of boats, such as:
- A sailing boat
- Canal boat
- Rowing boat
Step Two: Invest in Boat Insurance
After registering your boat, you must find the best insurance policy for your needs and budget. Don’t overlook this essential step, as it will cover you for any damage to the boat and liability.
Before choosing insurance, remember there are specific coverage options related to boats. For instance, you may need to pick a policy with fuel-spill liability to financially protect you from third-party damage or clean-up claims. It is common with accidental oil or fuel discharge when a boat experiences a leak or sinks.
Remember, a boat insurance policy may only cover specific costs, and it may not protect you from natural disasters or damage when traveling overseas.
Step Three: Choose the Best Storing Option
Have you thought about where you would like to store your boat? You can choose from many options, such as a:
- Dry stack valet service
If you choose a trailer outside your home, bear in mind that some communities may not permit the long-term storage of boats on driveways. A marina is often the best choice, as you can safely moor it at a stunning location. Check out the best marinas near me to make an informed choice.
Step Four: Learn Basic Boat Maintenance
It doesn’t matter if you’ve purchased a personal watercraft or a powerboat; you will need to understand basic engine maintenance tactics. For instance, you’ll need to learn how to:
- Change the gearcase lubricant
- Change the oil and filter
- Perform a visual inspection of the propeller and trim/tilt systems
If you’re buying a boat in a cold climate, you may need to find residential moorings for off-season storage.
Don’t forget to keep your boat clean and shiny. If you don’t clean and wax the gel coat, it will oxide and become chalky. Also, dirt and grim may develop in your drains, pumps, hinges, and other moving parts that may cause mechanical problems.
Step Five: Add Safety Equipment
Boat owners must ensure they stock various safety items onto their vessels. For example, you’ll need:
- Personal flotation devices, such as life jackets
- Dock lines and fenders
- A first aid kit
- Flares, horns, and whistles
- Life rafts
- Fire extinguishers
- Emergency beacons
The above gear could save your and passengers’ lives in an emergency aboard a boat, such as a leak, fire, or medical emergency.