It’s that time of the year again; temperatures are getting warmer, school is ending, and the summer boating season is rapidly approaching.
If you are a boat owner, there is nothing more exciting than the seasons’ maiden voyage. But before you hit the water, there are some things you need to take care of to make sure you and your boat are ready.
“Making sure your boat and trailer are ready for summer is easy and will save you time and money,” said Nevada Game Warden Victor Jordan. “Knowing that you have prepared for the first outing of the summer should relieve a lot of stress.”
Here are some helpful tips to get you and your boat ready for the first outing.
1. Make sure your vessel is registered and you have an Aquatic Invasive Species (AIS) sticker.
2. Give the boat a good cleaning inside and out. Remove all the dust, dirt, and mold that might have accumulated.
3. While cleaning, check for cracks or any damage that might need to be addressed before you launch.
4. Check the battery. Make sure it’s fully charged, the terminals are clean and corrosion free, and inspect the wiring to make sure there are no exposed wires.
5. Make sure all the navigation lights are working. Clean the lens if they are starting to get hazy.
6. Inspect the engine. Make sure all hoses and belts are not cracked or leaking. Change the oil and check all fluids.
An often-overlooked item in the boat preparation, but no less important, is the trailer. You should check the following:
1. Check tire pressure.
2. Inspect rubber and tread on tires for damage or rotting.
3. Jack up wheels and make sure they rotate freely with no noise from the bearings.
4. Inspect trailer lights.
Lastly, now that the boat and trailer are ready to go you need to make sure all your safety gear is still in a serviceable condition.
1. Check your life jackets/PFD’s. Make sure the life jackets are not ripped and that all the buckles and zippers work.
If you have children check the size and fit. They might have outgrown last year’s life jacket.
2. Check that the fire extinguisher is still charged.
After you have checked all these items you will be ready for a fun, safe, and worry-free day on the water.
The Nevada Department of Wildlife (NDOW) protects, conserves, manages and restores wildlife and its habitat for the aesthetic, scientific, educational, recreational, and economic benefits to citizens of Nevada and the United States, and to promote the safety of persons using vessels on the waters of Nevada. Find us on Facebook, Twitter or visit us at www.ndow.org.