It’s boating season! Every summer, thousands of North Carolinians cool off by boating around our beautiful coastal shores and inland lakes. Watercraft season is once again here! Time to collect your boat from storage, check your safety equipment, and get out there. After running through your start-up checklist you’ll be ready to hit the water!
As a boater, adding these items to your checklist can help you stay safe, better enjoy your time out on the water, and maybe even save on your insurance.
Inspect for leaks in the fuel system and fuel hoses.
Replace damaged fuel hoses – soft, brittle, or cracking hoses indicate they may need to be replaced.
Be sure not to fill your boat with fuel that contains more than 10% ethanol. This could cause damage to your engine.
Charge any batteries.
Inspect electrical connections: look for corrosion and clean with a wire brush where necessary.
Propeller & Hull
Inspect propellers for cracks or dents and ensure they are properly secured.
Ensure drain plug is secure.
Belts, Hoses & Cables
Ensure belts are fitting tightly around the pulley system – if you see black residue around the pulley, your belt may be worn.
Check for cracks or swells on the shift and steering control cables as well as the throttle jacket. This could indicate internal damage.
Clean and vacuum your boat for your family to enjoy!
Check to make sure life jackets are in good condition.
Check all fluid levels.
Take a boating safety class – some insurance policies offer a discount!
Review your insurance policy to make sure you have the coverage you need to start the season!
Double Check Your Boat Insurance Policy
Before you start fishing, water skiing, sailing, or any other water-related activity, don’t forget to consider all the ways to protect your family and property.
Do you have enough liability coverage?
According to the U.S. Coast Guard, the most common boating accident is a collision with another recreational vehicle. If you don’t have a great insurance plan, that can cost you thousands of dollars in damages. A boat insurance plan has personal liability and boat coverage. That means you don’t need to pay out of pocket for damages to the other vehicle.
What will you pay if you get towed?
What about that towing fee? If you get grounded, stall, or collide with a fixed object, a towboat can also cost hundreds of dollars. When you look at a boat insurance plan, make sure that it has “roadside” assistance to avoid paying these fees!
Be vigilant on the waters and have a safe and fun boating season this year!