Winterizing, Part Deux
By Andrew Spaulding
Michael wrote a comprehensive article last week on winterizing tips, suggestions, and best practices. In covering sailboats he wrote about items that also apply to powerboats such as batteries, seacocks, and fuel treatments. I’m going to cover additional items and add notes to last week’s list. Please let me know if you have any questions. My email is email@example.com.
Stern(out)drives – Stern drives work great until they don’t. Most people forget all about their sterndrives until something goes wrong, usually involving a lost weekend or two in the summer. The first thing to do is visually inspect the drive soon after it comes out of the water. You want to look for signs of corrosion, damaged wires and hoses, propeller dings, and any scrapes on the drive. When you change the oil, inspect the initial oil level and check the oil for signs of water. Inspect the drive and shift bellows for cracking or dry rot.
Stuffing box – On the way to the boat yard inspect the stuffing boxes for excessive leaking. If there isn’t any more adjustment, it is time for a re-pack. Underway a drip every 10-15 (ish) seconds is ok. Without the engine running, there should be a drip every 30-60 seconds.