Guest author: Eva Tucker for Volvo Penta
We all have been that friend or have that one friend who can’t seem to get enough of their boat. Whether it’s fishing off the back, racing upfront with a buddy on deck- there are few things better in life than being behind the engine and feeling free. But while boats may be fun for everyone else around them, what about when it’s time to be away from the water?
After you’ve had your boat for a while, the best way to care for it is by being intentional about what needs attention. Countless ways can help with maintaining any size vessel in excellent condition, including these simple tips.
What do you need to make sure your boat is working before you begin boating?
The saying “a bad day on the water is better than a good one at work” has never been more true. You might feel that way until your boat begins turning into an expensive floating bus with nothing but tired passengers and a dead motor to keep you company.
Boaters can get stuck out on the water for several reasons. Still, if you happen to run out of gas and have no way of contacting someone who does have fuel available, then things will quickly go from bad to worse. In addition, knowing how much your boat uses per hour or mile could be crucial to avoid guessing.
Engine failure on the water can be dangerous. Preparing your engine at home with necessary repairs is easier. Finding accessible parts is much more practical than fumbling about in rough seas or trying to fix something located far away from land-based locations.
Electrical systems are just as crucial to your boats’ performance and longevity as any other system. The electrical components can be complex for some people new at maintenance, but it doesn’t affect you if you know what tools work best.
Safety Equipment is just as essential to your boat’s wellbeing. Still, it often goes unnoticed because of how mundane they seem. You might not think about safety equipment needing maintenance or being present at all times, but some laws say otherwise!
What are things to look out for when you are in open water?
Boating is a great way to spend time with family and friends. Whether you decide to go fishing, swimming, or enjoy the beauty of nature, boaters should make safety their top priority when in the water.
Nowadays, it is impossible to predict the weather. That means that even on a beautiful day like today, we need an umbrella and raincoat just in case! Therefore, it would be great if you could also remember these two important pieces of advice:
- Always check for low water temperatures before going out onto your boat
- Don’t forget about strong gusts of wind when planning which direction will take you through open waters at different times during your journey
Aids to Navigation is a system of navigation that provides information similar in nature and function, if not identical at all times for boaters. The two main types are buoys that float on top with beacons. These aids are moored down permanently to underwater surfaces like reefs or shoals.
A day beacon is a type of informational sign. The term top mark refers to any non-lighting element, such as a sphere affixed on the top of an Aid, and often has an LED light show at night or strobe lights within their design.
What preventative measures are the most important?
Boating has become one of the most popular recreational activities for people. The percentage of those opting to go boating is increasing, which means they need safety precautions taken seriously enough.
However, inadequate care and practices have caused an increase in casualties during boat rides. So here are some tips on how you can stay safe while enjoying your afternoon at sea:
1. Follow the Navigation
You need to follow the boat traffic rules while boating. Navigating the ship can assure safe passage and reduce injury risk for you (and others).
So pay attention out on those waters. You don’t want yourself or anyone going through an unfortunate situation.
2. Keep an eye on the Weather
A sailor’s life is all about preparation, and checking the weather before boarding your ship should not be an exception. A radio that can monitor bad conditions in case you need to get out of the water quickly is also an essential item on board for any emergencies.
3. Check all of the Safety Gear
To have a safe and enjoyable experience during your trip, you must pack all the safety gear beforehand. Make sure everything works correctly by checking before boarding! Carrying an extra set of lifejackets can be helpful as well.
4. Check all of the Equipment on the Ship
Be sure the navigation system, radio, and lights are working properly. Ensure that you have enough fuel for your journey ahead or prepare to call in at an emergency landing strip.
We hope you’ve found this article to be informative and helpful. Boating is fun, but it can also present risks if specific safety measures are not taken beforehand. Always remember the three most important preventative measures for boating:
1. Always check your boat before loading up passengers or cargo.
2. Know how to operate your vessel so that you don’t get lost in open water.
3. Make sure everyone on board has life jackets strapped onto their bodies at all times-even if they won’t need them now.
Eva Tucker, writer for Volvo Penta