1. Drain and Replace the Fresh Water System with Antifreeze.
Larger boats, like our Cruisers Yachts line, have fresh water lines that run all the fresh water on the boat. This includes the sinks, bathrooms, water heater, and waste holding tanks. If there are lines that hold water, we'll need to flush them out to prevent possible damage over the winter. Our service crew will check the boat's manual to verify which products we can use to replace the water. Generally, a non-toxic antifreeze can be used in the onboard water heater and all lines to any faucets or drains, including the bathroom. The antifreeze is used to flush the water out of the system and help protect the water lines.
When storing your boat for the winter, it's important to get all the water out of the engine. This includes hose lines, the engine block, and exhaust manifolds. The goal is to prevent water from freezing/expanding which can cause cracks and leaks in the components of the engine. We will flush the systems with antifreeze to protect your engine from the winter weather. Additionally, we will make sure the transmission fluid is full and also check the closed coolant system to make sure it's able to withstand the winter. Finally, we will wipe the engine down and clean it using fogging oil to keep the shine and protect the exterior of the engine.
Filling up the tank 3/4 full before you put away the boat is important for a couple different reasons. Keeping it full fills the vacuum, preventing any water from condensing in the tank. We recommend holding the tank at 75%, so the fuel has room to expand on a warmer day without spilling through the vent and all over the boat. Some boat experts believe that fuel with ethanol may spoil over the winter; they recommend adding a fuel stabilizer to prevent any issues.
Don't let the process of winterizing your boat overwhelm you! With the best boat service crew at the Lake of the Ozarks, your watercraft will be well-protected from the winter elements. Our service department will winterize ANY watercraft, from PWC to yachts. They work by appointment, so call Rick at our office today and get your boat ready for the winter at the Lake.